Film director came to see Dutch minister at Oppenheimer house

English: Albert Einstein and Robert Oppenheimer in a posed photograph at the Institute for Advanced Study. Photo: courtesy of US Govt. Defense Threat Reduction Agency

Film director Christopher Nolan visited caretaker education minister Robbert Dijkgraaf several times at Robert Oppenheimer’s former home in Princeton to “pick up vibes”, Dijkgraaf has told talk show host Humberto Tan.

Dijkgraaf lived in the house of Oppenheimer, the physicist who paved the way for the atomic bomb, for nearly a decade during his time as a director of the Institute of Advanced Studies at the prestigious American university.

Oppenheimer director Nolan is a stickler for historical detail, Dijkgraaf told Humberto. “He wants everything to be just right. He came by twice to get the feel of the place, to pick up vibes,” Dijkgraaf said.

The furniture from the house also appears in the film, Dijkgraaf said. “We were in the cinema watching and the children squeezed my hand: there’s mama’s chair!

It did not take Nolan’s biopic to remind Dijkgraaf of the ill-fated scientist who came to bitterly regret his work on the bomb.

“It’s very strange because I lived very close to this man for 10 years. At least once a day I would think: ‘He lived here too, what happened here?’ You look at old photos and recognise little corners of the house.

“It’s strange to think that millions of people around the world are now watching it and Oppenheimer’s story too.”

Oppenheimer has been seen by nearly a million people in the Netherlands so far.

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