In an upset that dashed hopes for Michael Keaton’s comeback to reach its ultimate conclusion, Eddie Redmayne of The Theory Of Everything took home the award for Best Actor for his portrayal of Stephen Hawking. He beat out Keaton, Steve Carell, Bradley Cooper and Benedict Cumberbatch.
Visibly overcome during his acceptance speech, Redmayne barely contained himself.
“I don’t think I’m capable of articulating how I feel. I am a lucky, lucky man,” he said. He dedicated the Oscar “to all of those people around the world battling ALS,” and added that the award also belongs “to one exceptional family,” promising Stephen Hawking, his former wife and their children that “I will be its custodian. I promise I will honor it, answer its beck and call, polish it, and wait on it hand and foot.”
The Theory of Everything, based on the memoir Traveling to Infinity: My life with Stephen Hawking by Jane Wilde Hawking, follows the life of the physicist as he succumbed to Motor Neuron Disease just as his career in the sciences took off, and his relationship with his wife during the period. The film was also nominated in the Best Actress, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Picture, and Best Original Score categories.