UPDATED 6/30, 3:10 p.m. ET: According to Christopher Nolan's spokesperson, the director doesn't ban chairs on his sets.
“For the record, the only things banned from [Christopher Nolan’s] sets are cell phones (not always successfully) and smoking (very successfully),” Nolan’s spokesperson, Kelly Bush Novak, told Indiewire. “The chairs Anne was referring to are the directors chairs clustered around the video monitor, allocated on the basis of hierarchy not physical need. Chris chooses not to use his but has never banned chairs from the set. Cast and crew can sit wherever and whenever they need and frequently do.”
See original story below.
Christopher Nolan does not ban chairs from his movie sets, a spokesperson for the director has confirmed to IndieWire. Social media buzz over an alleged chair ban on Nolan’s sets erupted June 29 after Variety published an “Actors on Actors” video interview between Anne Hathaway and Hugh Jackman in which the former complimented Nolan’s decision not to allow chairs on set. Hathaway has appeared in Nolan’s blockbusters “The Dark Knight Rises” and “Interstellar.”
“For the record, the only things banned from [Christopher Nolan’s] sets are cell phones (not always successfully) and smoking (very successfully),” Nolan’s spokesperson Kelly Bush Novak of ID said in a statement. “The chairs Anne was referring to are the directors chairs clustered around the video monitor, allocated on the basis of hierarchy not physical need. Chris chooses not to use his but has never banned chairs from the set. Cast and crew can sit wherever and whenever they need and frequently do.”
This tidbit/trivia knowledge, which could be hard to bring up in casual conversation, came about when Hathaway, who's had roles in a pair of Nolan films (namely The Dark Knight Rises and Interstellar), was speaking to Hugh Jackman during a virtual conversation the two partook in for Variety's "Actors on Actors."
The two Hollywood vets were talking about directors who wouldn't allow cellphones on set. That's when Hathaway brought up that Nolan takes things a step further when it comes to axing anything that may distract from the creative process.
"I don't want to contradict you," she said when Jackman was only able to rattle off two directors who uphold that cellphone ban. "But you've worked with three directors that don't allow cellphones: Christopher Nolan."
"Oh, that's right," recalled Jackman after apparently forgetting about 2006's The Prestige.
That's when Hathaway pivoted to Nolan's more restrictive policy, stating that she believes he may be "onto something." Perhaps this will bring back memories of some crappy summer job you held once.
"Chris also doesn't allow chairs," she said. "I worked with him twice. He doesn't allow chairs, and his reasoning is, if you have chairs, people will sit, and if they're sitting, they're not working. I mean, he has these incredible movies in terms of scope and ambition and technical prowess and emotion."
"[His movies] always arrives at the end under schedule and under budget," she went on. "I think he's onto something with the chair thing."
She also went on to talk about non-chair related topics (for whatever reason), but the tidbit that seems to have stuck with the social media masses is Nolan's disdain for formal seating. Well, at least that's the takeaway after reading these: