The Facility for Rare Isotope Beams (FRIB) will be a world-leading laboratory for the study of nuclear structure, reactions and astrophysics. Experiments with intense beams of rare isotopes produced at FRIB will guide us toward a comprehensive description of nuclei, elucidate the origin of the elements in the cosmos, help provide an understanding of matter in neutron stars and establish the scientific foundation for innovative applications of nuclear science to society. FRIB will be essential for gaining access to key regions of the nuclear chart, where the measured nuclear properties will challenge established concepts, and highlight shortcomings and needed modifications to current theory. Conversely, nuclear theory will play a critical role in providing the intellectual framework for the science at FRIB, and will provide invaluable guidance to FRIB's experimental programs. This review overviews the broad scope of the FRIB theory effort, which reaches beyond the traditional fields of nuclear structure and reactions, and nuclear astrophysics, to explore exciting interdisciplinary boundaries with other areas. © 2014 World Scientific Publishing Company.