Christopher Nolan Is My Brother

Everything you’ve heard about him is wrong

Jim Nolan
2 min readJul 25, 2023
My brother Christopher Nolan

Here we go again. Every year or so, a movie comes out and people claim that Christopher Nolan, my brother, made it. They go on and on about what an important filmmaker he is, inventive, fearless, an “auteur.”

This elaborate prank is getting old. Because my brother Chris is a geologist. While he certainly likes movies, he does not make them. Let me make this clear: The Earth is not flat. Humankind landed on the moon. And my brother, Christopher Nolan, has never made a film.

The lengths that people go to continue this charade amazes me. For example, if you go to Wikipedia—normally quite trustworthy—you will find a long, elaborate history of “Christopher Nolan.” For heaven’s sake. I know Christopher Nolan. I grew up with him. This is not my brother.

Chris has not kept “a viable alternative model of big-budget filmmaking alive.” Chris’s work is not “typically characterized by themes relating to epistemology and existentialism.” And Chris has certainly not been nominated for five Academy Awards, I think I would have heard.

The amount of time spent creating this wiki page is astounding. Where is the famous Wikipedia editorial team? Is it possible that they have been taken in, too?

The real tell? The photo is not of my brother. Chris has never had a beard.

By the way, I’m not unaware that sometimes people have the same name. But what are the chances in this case? Both names are extremely unusual. Nowadays “Nolan” is much more likely to be a first name, like Nolan Ryan.

And “Christopher”? Other than Chris Hemsworth, Chris Evans, Chris Pratt, Chris Rock, Chris Pine, Chris Tucker, Chris Brown, Christopher Guest, Christopher Lee, Christopher Walken, Christopher Cross, and Christopher Plummer, you never hear it anymore.

So the odds of there being another “Christopher Nolan” are next to nil.

One final question to ask yourself. I can see someone making a movie about Barbie. Or superheroes like Ant Man. But a movie about J. Robert Oppenheimer? A scientist? In 2023? Please. It would never get funded—unless somehow the Avengers traveled back in time to give him a hand.

To my brother Christopher Nolan, I hope you get your name back. You will always be the OG Christopher Nolan.

And to those propagating this hoax, next time try and make it at least a little believable. When the next “film” comes out, try and make the subject sound like something people might actually go to see.

How about a Xanadu remake? Roller skating, singing, and Olivia Newton-John. Not a nuclear physicist to be seen.



Jim Nolan

Jim’s humor writing has appeared in The New Yorker, Funny Times,, McSweeneys Internet Tendency, and on WBFO public radio.