Toronto: ‘Theory of Everything’ Has the Right Formula for Oscars

Stephen Hawking drama, starring Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones, gets splashy awards launch at festival

Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones confidently enter the awards race with their new Stephen Hawking drama “The Theory of Everything.” The film, which premiered Sunday at the Toronto Film Festival, is already earning strong reviews and could score attention as a best picture contender and artisan categories, in addition to acting honors for Redmayne and Jones.

Based on the Jane Hawking memoir, “Theory” tells the story of Hawking (Redmayne) and his first wife (Jones), whose 25-year relationship began in the early 1960s.

It’s a classy piece from Focus Features and Working Title, directed by James Marsh (“Man on Wire”) and scripted by Anthony McCarten. All craft contributions are notable, including Johann Johannsson’s score and Benoit Delhomme’s cinematography.

Nothing is certain, though, since the fourth quarter has a lot of heavy-hitters coming up. But at this point,  it looks good for Focus, which smartly scored multiple Oscar noms last year with “Dallas Buyers Club,” including best picture.

Challenges: In many ways, “The Theory of Everything” is a formulaic triumph-over-adversity biopic. It offers reminders of “My Left Foot” and “Diving Bell and the Butterfly” (as Variety reviewer Justin Chang points out), with a little “Beautiful Mind” thrown in as well.

Assets: The tale may be familiar, but it works. The film touches on topics such as human resilience, God, time, love and thermodynamics. What’s not to like? And it has a great backstory, with Redmayne at the world premiere in Toronto talking about many months of meticulous research, which eventually paid off with the blessings of Jane and Stephen Hawking (whom everybody loves, even if they never read his book).

There are still a dozen big films that are unseen, but the best-picture race is starting to shape up. And, yes, with “The Imitation Game” and “Theory” are both in the game, meaning this could be the first year when the top race includes two biopics about British geniuses.

 

More Film

  • 'Dark Knight' Changed Movies, and the

    Christopher Nolan's 'Dark Knight' Changed Movies, and the Oscars, Forever

    Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones confidently enter the awards race with their new Stephen Hawking drama “The Theory of Everything.” The film, which premiered Sunday at the Toronto Film Festival, is already earning strong reviews and could score attention as a best picture contender and artisan categories, in addition to acting honors for Redmayne and Jones. Based on the Jane Hawking […]

  • Boy Erased Trailer

    Nicole Kidman, Russell Crowe Send Lucas Hedges to Gay Conversion Therapy in 'Boy Erased'

    Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones confidently enter the awards race with their new Stephen Hawking drama “The Theory of Everything.” The film, which premiered Sunday at the Toronto Film Festival, is already earning strong reviews and could score attention as a best picture contender and artisan categories, in addition to acting honors for Redmayne and Jones. Based on the Jane Hawking […]

  • Ron Satlof

    Ron Satlof, Veteran TV Director, Dies at 79

    Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones confidently enter the awards race with their new Stephen Hawking drama “The Theory of Everything.” The film, which premiered Sunday at the Toronto Film Festival, is already earning strong reviews and could score attention as a best picture contender and artisan categories, in addition to acting honors for Redmayne and Jones. Based on the Jane Hawking […]

  • Wolf-Kasteler Promotes Graehme Morphy, Annick Muller

    Wolf Kasteler Promotes Graehme Morphy, Annick Muller (EXCLUSIVE)

    Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones confidently enter the awards race with their new Stephen Hawking drama “The Theory of Everything.” The film, which premiered Sunday at the Toronto Film Festival, is already earning strong reviews and could score attention as a best picture contender and artisan categories, in addition to acting honors for Redmayne and Jones. Based on the Jane Hawking […]

  • Comic Con Hall H Panel Gender

    Comic-Con: Why Is Hall H Still Lacking in Female Panelists?

    Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones confidently enter the awards race with their new Stephen Hawking drama “The Theory of Everything.” The film, which premiered Sunday at the Toronto Film Festival, is already earning strong reviews and could score attention as a best picture contender and artisan categories, in addition to acting honors for Redmayne and Jones. Based on the Jane Hawking […]

  • Dwayne JohnsonLegendary and Universal Pictures' Present

    Don't Blame Dwayne Johnson for 'Skyscraper's' Underwhelming Debut

    Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones confidently enter the awards race with their new Stephen Hawking drama “The Theory of Everything.” The film, which premiered Sunday at the Toronto Film Festival, is already earning strong reviews and could score attention as a best picture contender and artisan categories, in addition to acting honors for Redmayne and Jones. Based on the Jane Hawking […]

  • Millarworld Comics in Development at Netflix

    Millarworld Film Adaptations in Development at Netflix With Ted Melfo, Neal Moritz

    Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones confidently enter the awards race with their new Stephen Hawking drama “The Theory of Everything.” The film, which premiered Sunday at the Toronto Film Festival, is already earning strong reviews and could score attention as a best picture contender and artisan categories, in addition to acting honors for Redmayne and Jones. Based on the Jane Hawking […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content