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“Barbenheimer” stars Margot Robbie and Cillian Murphy talk the year’s most unlikely double feature

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Oppenheimer star Cillian Murphy sat down for one of Variety’s ongoing Actors on Actors interviews with an appropriate partner: Barbie lead Margot Robbie.

After congratulating each other on both Barbie and Oppenheimer’s box office successes, the pair opened up about how the “Barbenheimer” frenzy almost didn’t happen — and probably wouldn’t have if she didn’t follow her instinct.

Murphy explained Oppenheimer director Christopher Nolan has traditionally — and superstitiously — favored releasing movies on or around the films’ eventual date night at the movies, July 21.

Robbie, a producer of her blockbuster, said one of the producers for the nuclear age drama called her and suggested she and the rest of the Barbie team shift their theatrical release so the two films wouldn’t go up against each other.

“And I was like, ‘We’re not moving our date,"” the actress recalled, smiling.

“If you’re scared to be up against us, then you move your date,"” she continued. “And he’s like, ‘We’re not moving our date. I just think it’d be better for you to move.’ And I was like, ‘We’re not moving!"” the Australian actress said.

She then expressed her reasoning for standing her ground, saying, “I think this is a really great pairing actually. It’s a perfect double billing, Oppenheimer and Barbie.”

“That was a good instinct,” Murphy responded with a laugh.

“Clearly the world agreed,” Robbie added. “Thank God.”

“I think both of these films show the appetite that the audience has for cinema,” Murphy expressed.

“People like everything. People are weird,” Margot said. “They have wide-ranging tastes.”

“The audience doesn’t like being told what to do … [Moviegoers] decided that this [pairing] was correct,” Murphy agreed.

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