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Christopher Nolan’s mysterious Tenet gets first big trailer

The only footage before was theater-exclusive

Petrana Radulovic is an entertainment reporter specializing in animation, fandom culture, theme parks, Disney, and young adult fantasy franchises.

The first actual full trailer for Christopher Nolan’s Tenet is now actually, really online.

Previously, a very brief trailer, which only played in theaters, revealed John David Washington (BlacKkKlansman) as some kind of investigator, and featured a set of cryptic title cards that read: “Time has come for a new protagonist” and “time has come for a new mission.” Shots of Washington’s character passed out, a SWAT team, Washington’s character in a fight, dragged to a cell, and breathing through an oxygen mask followed. Mysterious!

But this new trailer gives some actual plot to the flashes of images. All that was known about Tenet was that it was “an action epic evolving from the world of international espionage.”

Turns out this means, John David Washington trying to stop World War III, with the help of Robert Pattinson and Elizabeth Debicki. Cars flip over! Pattinson is blonde! And some kind of time-twisting element that, while present in many of Nolan’s films, becomes more explicit as Washington’s character uncovers the truth about ... who knows. It involves Kenneth Branagh’s very nice yacht.

Tenet is set to debut in theaters on July 17, 2020.