Variety's Actors on Actors series released the most hotly anticipated interview of the season, with Cillian Murphy and Margot Robbie interviewing one another about the cultural phenomenon of Barbenheimer.
During the segment, Robbie shared that the first moment she knew the movie would be a cultural phenomenon was when photos of herself and Ryan Gosling rollerblading went viral during some of the film's "first look" photos.
She also shared that there had originally been some discussion about moving the release date of Barbie to not compete with Oppenheimer, but as the film's producer, she refused to do it.
Robbie opined that the Barbenheimer meme was proof "people are weird" and can't be contained or categorized by algorithms, while Murphy added that "audiences don't like to be told what to do" and people have an appetite for serious film.
At one point, Robbie asked Murphy if he was "aware of memes" and the Barbie vs. Oppenheimer phenomenon, given his reputation for being offline.
Murphy said he knew "there were memes about me not knowing what a meme is," and that although "children started that stuff," he now knows his memes.
The actors also discussed how wonderful it was to work with Christopher Nolan and Greta Gerwig as directors, as well as their different approaches to acting (both love to prepare roles for a long time in advance with research and character work).
Online, posters and memers received the interview with great enthusiasm as it's begun racking up thousands of views in short order.
Variety's Actors on Actors is in its nineteenth season now. The series pairs two actors together from different movies to discuss the craft and the making of films. While there may never be another Barbenheimer, cinema appears to be alive and well.