Brow Beat

Christopher Nolan Will Guest-Edit Wired. We Have the EXCLUSIVE, Mind-Bending Details.

What will a magazine edited by Christopher Nolan be like?

Photo illustration by Lisa Larson-Walker for Slate. Photo by Mario Anzuoni/Reuters

Read more about Interstellar in Slate.

In a surprising, last-minute twist, Wired announced Monday morning that their December issue, on newsstands Nov. 25, will be guest-edited by Christopher Nolan.

Editor-in-chief Scott Dadich explained that while the collaboration was inspired by Interstellar, the issue will also “draw on everything from Memento and The Prestige to The Dark Knight trilogy and Inception,” giving Nolan “license to create a magazine version of the kind of rich, detailed, and complex worlds he builds for his films.” Indeed, a press release noted that “the issue is built around five dimensions, growing increasingly complex as readers make their way from the front cover to the back.” Though no one will get to see the issue for two more weeks, leaked mockups have already prompted many teenaged boys to proclaim Nolan’s Wired “brilliant,” “deep,” and “real.”


So what does the magazine equivalent of a Christopher Nolan movie look like? We were able to obtain an exclusive first look. Here’s what we learned:

* All details of the issue’s layout are unsatisfyingly explained in a 4,000-word foreword written by Michael Caine. 

* One of the first essays is begun by Katie Holmes but finished, far more capably, by Maggie Gyllenhaal.

* All the other women who contributed to the issue are dead. (Their contributions are reprints.)

* Halfway through, all articles begin to appear sideways, requiring readers to turn the magazine 90-degrees to the left.

* Nolan turned up the color of the paper stock, rendering several words unreadable.

* The typeface throughout is Gotham.

* Hans Zimmer’s contributions to the music section are just lightly reworded versions of his previous work.

* The back-page column is by Guy Pearce, but it appears in the front of the magazine, and he forgets what he is writing about halfway through.


* The magazine’s architecture column explains how to achieve your wildest design dreams with an endless sprawl of buildings that are all cement and gray.

* Guest columnists include both Batman and Bruce Wayne. All Batman’s columns are printed in bold and italic so that no one. will know. they’re actually. the same.


* For the first time, Wired will include a poetry section. It will consist of Dylan Thomas’ “Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night” printed four times.

* The crossword has at least two possible answers for every clue.

* The issue will not have a humor section.

Wired is understandably excited about the issue’s commercial prospects—and we hear that Nolan will show up randomly at newsstands and park benches around the country to ensure that readers are experiencing the magazine correctly.

Moreover, in fear that the inevitably popular issue will fail to gain recognition from the National Magazine Awards, the American Society of Magazine Editors has already expanded the number of nominees in its General Excellence category from five to 10.