Christopher Nolan’s next movie will come out on July 21, 2017, as per Variety and THR. That’s all we know. I bet it’ll be pretty good. Insert pithy remark about hoping the sound mix will be better than it was on his last big movie, Interstellar, but then counter that pithy remark by ultimately praising Interstellar for its ambition and strengths as a cinematic experience. Point out how although Interstellar made a lot of money, it wasn’t quite on the same level as Nolan’s Batman movies or Inception. Frame that as making the box office prospects for his next movie an interesting thing to keep an eye on. Throw in a link to a review of Nolan’s recent documentary short about the Quay Brothers. End story. Publish.
That’s how quick and easy this kind of story should be. So, why did both SlashFilm and ScreenRant devote seven small paragraphs and BirthMoviesDeath four long paragraphs to reporting this story? Vulture has it about right with just a single paragraph, and DenOfGeek is not far behind. I noticed the variance in article lengths as I was swiping through my Flym News Reader app on my tablet this morning, and the ones I mentioned are just a couple of many potential examples.
Every site knows its audience and how much information they’ve come to expect in news stories, and they have to respond accordingly. Is your readership the type that will pretty much already know just as much about Nolan’s career as you and thus doesn’t really need any further reminders of how he’s the guy who made those Batman movies? Or are they the type that might not have even seen Interstellar yet or saw it but can’t remember what the critical consensus was at the time?
These are the types of questions I wrestle with all the time. So, I ask you – how much backstory do you really need for a story with no concrete details or even rumors but instead a mere release date, especially when the release date in question is for a new movie from a director whose movies have grossed over $4 billion worldwide? Because one sentence just about covers this whole thing – Christopher Nolan’s next movie will come out on July 21, 2017, but as per usual with the secretive director we know nothing more about it and probably won’t for quite a while.