April 20, 2023

An Early Viewing Of “Nuclear Now” Featuring Oliver Stone, Director, and Professor Joshua Goldstein

We are thrilled to be sharing this Special Edition COBT with you. The new film "Nuclear Now" is just a week away from hitting theaters and we had the opportunity to not only see it early but also to visit with the film’s acclaimed director, Oliver Stone, as well as Professor Joshua Goldstein, the co-writer of the book that inspired the film ("A Bright Future: How Some Countries Have Solved Climate Change and the Rest Can Follow"). Oliver is an Academy Award-winning director, screenwriter, producer, and author of "Chasing the Light." As you may know, some of his renowned work includes "Scarface," "Platoon," "Born on the 4th of July," "Wall Street," and "Midnight Express." Professor Goldstein is an award-winning scholar of international relations and an expert on war and society. Mike Bradley, Brett Rampal and I had the pleasure of hosting Oliver and Josh, talking about the key aspects of the movie, and delving where we could into the broader issues the movie raises.

In our discussion, Oliver describes how a review of "A Bright Future" in the New York Times sparked his interest in nuclear as part of the solution to address climate change. It took two and a half years to create the film, which covers not only the history of how the technology was developed but also its high and low moments in popular perception. We touch on Oliver’s takeaways from studying different aspects of American society and the overall misrepresentation of nuclear power that the film aims to correct. Josh provides background on how nuclear power and nuclear war became conflated, much to nuclear power’s detriment. We also discuss Admiral Hyman Rickover and his development of naval nuclear-powered submarines, the Hollywood community’s unfortunate portrayal of nuclear that’s added to the narrative over the years, and the team’s experience finding experts to interview as part of the film. Oliver also shares his perspective on international cooperation around nuclear and both he and Josh comment on the significant amount of fact checking that took place to create the film. “Nuclear Now" is technical in its approach and goes into significant detail around historical, existing, newer and future potential nuclear technology.

Nuclear Now opens to the public on May 1st in select theaters across the US and Canada. The film will also be available via streaming at a later date – you can sign up for updates on that release. If you are interested in more nuclear content, last month Veriten debuted a podcast dedicated entirely to the world of nuclear, power, and industrial heat called Gener8. We hope you can take time to dig in and learn more.

We want to thank Oliver, Josh, and the team behind Nuclear Now for improving the conversation around nuclear energy, for injecting more optimism into the energy/environment/climate discussion, and for spending an hour with us engaging on the film. We hope you all enjoy the film as much as we did!

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