‘The Current War’ Star Michael Shannon Calls Nikola Tesla a ‘Rock Star’ (Exclusive Video)

TIFF 2017: Historical biopic about a battle between electricity titans opens Nov. 24

In The Weinstein Company’s “The Current War,” contemporary leading men Michael Shannon, Benedict Cumberbatch and Nicholas Hoult play some of yesteryear’s literal megawatt stars, as they compete to determine whose electrical system will power the world.

And while the film focuses on the battle between George Westinghouse (Shannon) and Thomas Edison (Cumberbatch), Nicholas Hoult’s Nikola Tesla may have faced the most pressure — after Elon Musk helped make his character a household name.

“I think Nick was really in the hot seat,” Shannon told TheWrap CEO and editor-in-chief Sharon Waxman at the Toronto International Film Festival. “Because Tesla’s, like — people are really excited about Tesla. He’s kind of like a rock star.”

Hoult said Tesla’s creations — not just his name — are as relevant as ever today.

“A lot of inventors and people who are into science nowadays are completely inspired by what he created,” Hoult said. “And a lot of his inventions live on. He’s actually kind of an ethereal being.”