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About The Production

You create the world of the dream. You bring the subject into that dream and they fill it with their secrets.

Director/writer/producer Christopher Nolan reveals that he began creating the world of "Inception” almost a decade before he made the movie. "About ten years ago, I became fascinated with the subject of dreams, about the relationship of our waking life to our dreaming life. I've always found it to be an interesting paradox that everything within a dream—whether frightening, or happy, or fantastic—is being produced by your own mind as it happens, and what that says about the potential of the imagination is quite extraordinary. I started thinking how that could be applied to a grand-scale action movie with a very human dimension.”

"Inception” hinges on the premise that it is possible to share dreams…dreams that have been designed to look and feel completely real while you're in them. And in that subconscious state, a person's deepest and most valuable secrets are there for the taking. Nolan elaborates, "At the heart of the movie is the notion that an idea is indeed the most resilient and powerful parasite. A trace of it will always be there in your mind…somewhere. The thought that someone could master the ability to invade your dream space, in a very physical sense, and steal an idea—no matter how private—is compelling.”

Producer Emma Thomas agrees, noting that the film had to maintain that balance between a thrill ride and an emotional journey. "It has elements of a heist movie, but one set in a more fantastical framework. It has huge action sequences, but it also has characters you truly care about, and there is a real emotional driving force throughout the movie.”

That driving force is largely embodied in the central character of Dom Cobb, played by Leonardo DiCaprio. "In essence, that's what was immediately engaging to me about the script,” says the actor. "It is this highly entertaining, complex thriller where anything can happen, but at the heart is one man's quest to uncover a long-buried truth and to get back home. It's also completely original; I don't think anyone could say they've experienced anything like it before. That combination made me excited about working on the project, as well as with Chris Nolan. He is an expert at taking this kind of multi-layered storyline and making it true and tangible to an audience.”

Thomas comments, "Chris has learned a lot over the years in terms of making big movies, and a lot of those things have come into play here. But this film is something very fresh and very different and also quite personal. It gave him a completely clean and pure canvas on which to work.”

Nolan asserts that the central theme of the story is both personal and universal "because we all dream. We all experience the phenomenon of our minds creating a world and living in that world at the exact same time. There is also an incredible contrast in the world of dreams—they are so intimate and yet they have infinite possibilities in terms of what we can imagine. So the challenge was to blend the intimacy and emotion of what might take place in a dream with the massive scope of what our brains can conceive of. I wanted to create a film that would allow the audience to experience the limitless realities that only in dreams can we realize.”

"We knew the production of ‘Inception' was going to have to be big because of the subject matter—you can do anything in a dream,” adds Thomas. "In fact, the scope of this film is greater than anything we've done before, even just in terms of the number of countries in which we shot.”

Production on "Inception” circled the globe, with principal photography taking place in six countries, on four separate continents. Over the course of filming, the cast and crew experienced a number of extremes,

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