Cillian Murphy Wins Golden Globe For Best Actor in a Drama

Cillian Murphy did anything but bomb at the 2024 Golden Globes on Sunday, winning the Best Actor in a Motion Picture — Drama trophy for his performance as J. Robert Oppenheimer in Oppenheimer. “I knew the first time that I walked on a Christopher Nolan set that it was different,” Murphy said while accepting the award. “I could tell by the rigor, the level of focus, the level of dedication, the complete lack of seating options for actors, [that] I was in the hands of a visionary director.”

Murphy then thanked his Oppenheimer director Christopher Nolan, who was awarded his first Golden Globe Sunday night for achievement in directing.

“I want to thank Chris and [producer] Emma [Thomas] for having faith in me for 20 years,” said Murphy, whose collaborations with Nolan date back to 2005’s Batman Begins. And though Murphy and Nolan teamed again for The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises, Inception, and Dunkirk, the $954 million-grossing biographical thriller marked Murphy’s first time as a Nolan leading man.

“He’s so understated and self-deprecating and, in his very English manner, just said, ‘Listen, I’ve written this script, it’s about Oppenheimer. I’d like you to be my Oppenheimer.’ It was a great day,” Murphy previously told The Associated Press before Oppenheimer blew up as the second highest-grossing R-rated movie of all time. “I have always said publicly and privately, to Chris, that if I’m available and you want me to be in a movie, I’m there. I don’t really care about the size of the part. But deep down, secretly, I was desperate to play a lead for him.”

This year’s nominees included Bradley Cooper for his portrayal of composer Leonard Bernstein in Netflix’s Maestro, which he also directed; Colman Domingo as civil rights activist Bayard Rustin in Netflix’s Rustin; Andrew Scott as a lonely writer in Searchlight’s All of Us Strangers; Barry Keoghan as grieving outsider Oliver Quick in Amazon MGM Studios’ Saltburn; and Leonardo DiCaprio as the ???m?hkase (“coyote”) Ernest Burkhart in Apple Studios’ Killers of the Flower Moon.

See the full list of 2024 Golden Globe winners.

The 81st Golden Globe Awards were presented live Sunday, Jan. 7 starting at 5 p.m. PT/8 p.m. on CBS and streaming live on Paramount+.