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Christopher Nolan and wife Emma Thomas to receive knighthood and damehood

British filmmaker Christopher Nolan and his wife and producer Emma Thomas are to receive a knighthood and damehood for their services to film.

Their recognition comes after their biopic Oppenheimer swept the 2024 awards season.

Earlier this month, London-born filmmaker Nolan won his first Oscar for directing the movie about the “father of the atomic bomb”, which starred Irish actor Cillian Murphy in the titular role.

He had previously been nominated for six Academy Awards for examining important questions throughout his body of work but had never won an Oscar for directing until this year’s ceremony.

It was also the first time the couple won the best picture Oscar and best film Bafta having previously been nominated for 2010’s sci-fi Inception and 2017’s war thriller Dunkirk.

Over the years, Thomas has collaborated with Nolan on all of his major feature films, including The Dark Knight trilogy, 2014’s Interstellar and 2020’s Tenet.

Christopher Nolan and Cillian Murphy
Christopher Nolan and Cillian Murphy (Ian West/PA)

Born in London to a British father and American mother, Nolan read English at University College London (UCL), choosing the school because of its filmmaking facilities.

It is also where he met his future wife, Thomas, with whom he has four children – Flora, Oliver, Rory and Magnus.

Together they co-founded and run a production company, Syncopy, which has been behind many of their blockbusters.

When Nolan was presented with the British Film Institute (BFI) Fellowship for being “one of the world’s most innovative and influential film directors”, he credited his wife.

UK premiere of Oppenheimer – London
Christopher Nolan and Emma Thomas arrive for the UK premiere of Oppenheimer (Ian West/PA)

He said he never felt alone making films as Thomas “always saw things the same way I did in terms of the importance of the medium”.

Nolan was previously made a CBE in the 2019 New Year Honours for his services to film.

The co-chief executive officer of Netflix, Ted Sarandos, has been made an honorary CBE for his services to creative industries.

The American businessman has been responsible for content operations at the streaming giant since 2000 and was appointed to his top position in July 2020.

After being recognised, Sarandos said in a statement: “The UK’s creative brilliance, quality craftsmanship and best in class production facilities make it an extraordinary place to invest.

“We couldn’t be more excited to be part of the creative community here and this is a real honour.”