Anne Hathaway kickstarted a Twitter movement when she casually dropped into a recent interview that The Dark Knight director Christopher Nolan doesn’t allow chairs on his sets.
Speaking with Hugh Jackman, she explained to the stunned actor that Nolan’s reasoning had to do with people “not working” if there was a chair around for them to sit in.
Naturally, the offhand comment caused a string of memes, pictures of chairs and claims that Nolan was a “grocery store manager” to circulate on Twitter.
Hathaway spoke with her former Les Miserables co-star as part of Variety’s Actors on Actors at Home, where the pair interviewed one another about their careers.
She revealed Nolan doesn’t allow phones on set and added, “Chris [Nolan] doesn’t allow chairs. I worked with him twice, doesn’t allow chairs.”
in this photo he's having to explain for the 1000th time why there aren't any chairs https://t.co/qHGirhBs8y— superchunk (@superchunk)June 29, 2020
“His reasoning is if you have chairs, people will sit in it and if they’re sitting, they’re not working,” she said.
Shortly after, the detail went viral and Twitter users did their thing. One user called for people to retweet a picture of rainbow chairs to “scare christopher Nolan”, and currently nearly 3000 people have retweeted it.
rt to scare christopher nolan pic.twitter.com/ulRtf7ix26— taran // BLM // ACAB (@thebatman_2021)June 29, 2020
Others joked about pranking Nolan on set, with screenwriter Bill Corbett sharing his own:
That time we pranked Christopher Nolan on set pic.twitter.com/tMp7wVAnrd— Bill Corbett (@BillCorbett)June 29, 2020
There were also recurring jokes about what Nolan would do if he caught a chair, or a person sitting in a chair, on set.
Still of Christopher Nolan seeing someone sitting on his set Circa. 2008 pic.twitter.com/hceHB9sLlO— Sarver (@RealJacobSarver)June 29, 2020
christopher nolan when someone sits down on set pic.twitter.com/Ljc3sa3hBm— nick usen (@nickusen)June 29, 2020
Another also speculated what would happen if Nolan was made to play a dreaded game of musical chairs.
Preschool teacher: “Today we are going to play musical chairs”
Christopher Nolan: pic.twitter.com/Fc1sW9tAMY— Lunwi (@Lunwi88)June 29, 2020
Given Nolan's skill with a superhero origin story, screenwriter Brian Lynch came up with one for him.
Guys you don't understand, when Christopher Nolan was younger, a chair crashed through his window, frightening him— Brian Lynch (@BrianLynch)June 29, 2020
Others joked that chairs (or the lack of them) played a big role in some of Nolan’s biggest films including The Prestige and Inception.
A little-known fact, but the real killer in Memento is a chair that Leonard keeps forgetting about.— Josh Spiegel (@mousterpiece)June 30, 2020
True story I was on set for Inception and between shots Christopher Nolan would blare Ludacris' 2003 single "Stand Up"— Ira Madison III (@ira)June 30, 2020
One user went as far as to Photoshop all the chairs out of iconic Nolan film scenes:
I thought people were exaggerating about the Christopher Nolan story. But then I went back to look at his films... and seriously. The dude has no chairs on set. pic.twitter.com/pGJuPX2pa1— Matt Arnold (@mattLarnold)June 30, 2020
At the very least, Hathaway’s comments seemed to be a warning for future actors working with Nolan - as one person tweeted how they might prepare.
The actors on Christopher Nolan next movie when he sees why he's trending. pic.twitter.com/qMzrB6mzHy— Travon Free (@Travon)June 29, 2020
On a more serious note, other Twitter users also accused the chair ban policy of being ableist.
Christopher Nolan’s upcoming film Tenet has been hit with delays. Originally slated for release on July 17, the date was pushed back to July 31 before a new announcement last week that it would open on August 12.