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Fans React to Josh Peck’s “Oppenheimer” Cameo With “Drake &


Jul 30, 2023

It appears the biggest jump scare in “Oppenheimer” isn’t the atomic bomb’s first explosion — it’s Josh Peck’s cameo. In the new Christopher Nolan film, the actor portrays physicist Kenneth Bainbridge, a member of the Manhattan Project team that develops the world’s first nuclear weapon. Though his role was technically known to the public beforehand and he briefly pops up in the movie’s various trailers, Peck didn’t participate in the press tour with other cast members like Cillian Murphy and Emily Blunt, leaving many moviegoers surprised by his appearance on screen.

Peck’s screen time in “Oppenheimer” is short but impactful: His character is present for the Trinity test, a code name used for the first atomic bomb detonation in history. Not only that, but Bainbridge is the one who presses the large red button triggering the weapon’s fiery explosion — a task that would ultimately change the course of history. Peck convincingly heightens the suspense of the pivotal moment.

Despite the intensity of Peck’s role and the movie as a whole, viewers can’t help but crack jokes hearkening back to his past, more lighthearted projects, namely “Drake & Josh.” Old clips from the sitcom have been circulating on Twitter since “Oppenheimer” hit theaters as fans reminisce on Peck’s Nickelodeon days. “Every time i saw josh peck in #Oppenheimer, i expected him to yell ‘it’s gonna be nuclear. NUCLEAR!'” one user tweeted after watching.

Several viewers even noted that, at one point in “Oppenheimer,” Peck makes a similar squinting facial expression to the one Josh Nichols always makes while angrily muttering, “Megan,” in response to his stepsister’s various pranks. And, of course, the TikTok parodies are plentiful. Exhibit A, for your viewing pleasure:

Peck has acknowledged that appearing in “Oppenheimer” was a big change from the comedic roles fans have come to know him for. During an April 2022 interview on “Chicks in the Office,” the 36-year-old said, “I have this really small part in this Christopher Nolan movie. I was on set two days ago going, ‘I’m the guy from “Drake & Josh.” What am I doing here?’ But I’m soaking it up.”

Peck isn’t the only unexpected face in Nolan’s latest epic. Devon Bostick, who plays Rodrick Heffley in the first three Diary of a Wimpy Kid movies, appears as a Manhattan Project physicist. Other scientists are played by Alex Wolff from Nickelodeon’s “The Naked Brothers Band” and David Krumholtz, aka Bernard the elf from the Santa Clause franchise. It seems Nolan wanted to serve his nuclear drama with a side of 2000s nostalgia.

Get a sneak peek at Peck in “Oppenheimer” below, or head to theaters to watch him in action.


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