The Theory of Everything trailer: Eddie Redmayne makes playing Stephen Hawking look torturous

Aug 6, 2014 at 4:55 p.m. ET

We've all heard of the theoretical physicist, Steven Hawking, though few of us could explain in detail his theorems on gravitational singularity. Luckily, we don't have to understand quantum physics to be inspired by the new film, The Theory of Everything.


British actor Eddie Redmayne made us swoon as Marius in 2012's Les Misérables. Now, he's making our bones and muscles ache as he plays the famous scientist, Stephen Hawking, in The Theory of Everything.

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In 1959, Hawking entered Oxford University as a spry, able-bodied 17-year-old. He even garnered somewhat of a daredevil image among the members of his boat club. But by the time he was 21, his health had begun to deteriorate. Doctors discovered he had motor neuron disease and gave him only two years to live.

Part of Hawking's amazing story is that he didn't give in to the disease, despite the fact that he is paralyzed and needs a speech-generating device in order to communicate. His survival and success is most likely due to the strength and love his first wife, Jane, showered on him. She was his advocate, his caretaker and his champion, though their marriage eventually became incredibly strained.

Felicity Jones (The Other Woman), who plays Jane, recently told Entertainment Weekly that playing Hawking's first wife "was an absolute labor of love. We play both of them from their teens, in Jane's case, through to 45. So it's all the different stages and emotional upheavals of that relationship for that period. It's about how they coped with that and both their own ambitions. They're both extraordinary people and it's a really phenomenal story."

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The trailer for The Theory of Everything seems to focus more on Hawking's marriage and personal life, rather than trying to explain his theories, which makes sense, since most of us know that, sometimes, making a marriage work can be as difficult as finding a black hole.

The Theory of Everything opens in theaters Nov. 7, just in time for Oscar season.