The thriller, starring John David Washington and Robert Pattinson, was slated as one of the biggest movies of 2020 but, amid the COVID-19 crisis, it opened with limited showings and only earned $53.8 million at the U.S. box office.
It fared better internationally, securing a worldwide tally of $347.1 million, and, speaking to the Los Angeles Times, Nolan insisted he’s satisfied with the film’s performance.
“Warner Bros. released Tenet, and I’m thrilled that it has made almost $350 million,” he shared, before admitting he’s “worried” about how studios will fare as the pandemic continues.
He explained: “I am worried that the studios are drawing the wrong conclusions from our release — that rather than looking at where the film has worked well and how that can provide them with much-needed revenue, they’re looking at where it hasn’t lived up to pre-Covid expectations and will start using that as an excuse to make exhibition take all the losses from the pandemic instead of getting in the game and adapting — or rebuilding our business, in other words.
“Long term, moviegoing is a part of life, like restaurants and everything else,” shared the director. “But right now, everybody has to adapt to a new reality.”