How Florence Pugh's Oppenheimer Sex Scenes Are Being Changed In Select Countries

As Christopher Nolan's first R-rated venture in over 20 years, "Oppenheimer" was bound to have elements that would make some audience members squeamish. The media went even further, hyping up the sex scenes to the point where people speculated (incorrectly) that there was a 15-minute intimate scene in the film. The final result may not have been as titillating as some people expected, but even with this awareness, it has done little to stop censors from making adjustments to the film.  

Not long after the film came under scrutiny from Indian officials due to a sex scene between Cillian Murphy's Robert Oppenheimer and Florence Pugh's Jean Tatlock where Oppenheimer reads the heavily revered Bhagavad Gita, further action was taken to censor some of the film's nudity. In another scene that sees Oppenheimer and Tatlock sitting across each other in a hotel room while completely naked, a computer-generated black dress has been added to Pugh from some Indian and Middle Eastern censors. Regarding nudity, this type of censorship is considered common practice in the regions.

Unlike the more adult-oriented R-rating given to the film in the United States, India granted the film a UA rating. This means that children under the age of 12 are permitted to see the movie if they have a parent with them.

Still, others were unhappy with the censorship. Some, such as @pramitheus, have tweeted such criticism as, " ... it's pointless to watch #Oppenheimer in India. Blurred, blocked with black bars, slapped with "no smoking" signs. CBFC is the most anti-cinema thing in existence ... " To those who made the film, these racy scenes have more importance to them than some might think.

Christopher Nolan sees the sex scenes as essential to Oppenheimer's story

Everyone is entitled to their opinions on how the nude scenes with Cillian Murphy and Florence Pugh in "Oppenheimer" worked for them. Many likely found the sex scene between the two during the security clearance hearing to be a bit jarring. But in the eyes of the director Christopher Nolan, the film would feel incomplete had they been lost. 

In an interview with Insider, "The Dark Knight" and "Interstellar" director shared his motivation for including sex scenes in the film, something largely avoided prior in his filmography. "Well, when you look at Oppenheimer's life and you look at his story, that aspect of his life, the aspect of his sexuality, his way with women, the charm that he exuded, it's an essential part of his story," Nolan said. Many of the director's previous films were PG-13, and as such, they were largely absent of any sensual moments. But for the real-life story of such an integral figure in the world's history, it appears Nolan wanted to be sure the audience understood him as best they could.

He further explained how Jean Tatlock's position as a Communist made a major impact on Oppenheimer's life down the line, so perceiving their relationship through the right lens was crucial to understanding his later endeavors. "So it felt very important to understand their relationship and to really see inside it and understand what made it tick without being coy or allusive about it, but to try to be intimate," he continued. The filmmaker also believed that the talents of Murphy and Pugh helped make his job easier when planning out these moments. 

While the final result may not have worked for all audiences, it's nice to know that Nolan approached his latest box office hit and the touchy subject matter within it with only good intentions. Hopefully, the overarching message of "Oppenheimer" isn't lost on audiences simply due to a CGI black dress.