The film offers rare insights into Hawking's life, past and present, aided by a cast of stellar contributors and Hawking fans, including astronaut Edwin Eugene 'Buzz' Aldrin, Jr., actors Jim Carrey and Benedict Cumberbatch, mathematical physicist Sir Roger Penrose and entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson.
IS THE FIRST AUTOBIOGRAPHICAL DOCUMENTARY ABOUT CELEBRITY PHYSICIST STEPHEN HAWKING
Available on DVD from PBS Distribution February 4th
DVD Features the Extended Theatrical Version of this Film
Airs on PBS Wednesday, January 29th (Check Local Listings)
Features Astronaut Edwin Eugene "Buzz" Aldrin, Jr., Actors Jim Carrey and Benedict Cumberbatch, Mathematical Physicist Sir Roger Penrose and Entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson
Arlington, Va. - January 23, 2014 - PBS Distribution today announced it is releasing Hawking on DVD. The film offers rare insights into Hawking's life, past and present, aided by a cast of stellar contributors and Hawking fans, including astronaut Edwin Eugene "Buzz" Aldrin, Jr., actors Jim Carrey and Benedict Cumberbatch, mathematical physicist Sir Roger Penrose and entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson. Hawking tracks the physicist's life story, told largely in his own words. It includes dramatic accounts of his life from childhood through university; intimate footage of Hawking today, including his home routine and his work life at the University of Cambridge; archival footage; and candid comments from family members, friends and colleagues. Computer-generated imagery illustrates some of Hawking's remarkable discoveries, such as the nature of black holes and the so-called "Big Bang" theory that explains the origins of the universe.
Hawking will be available on DVD February 4, 2014. The run time of the program is 90 minutes. The DVD SRP is $24.99. The program will also be available for digital download.
"This film is a personal journey through my life, told in my own words, that shows the story of how I became who I am today. It has been a lot of fun and also very strange to see myself depicted in so many ways," said Hawking. "I think it is important to realize we only have a very short time alive and should make the best of it. Despite my disabilities, I will always keep wondering about the mysteries of the universe."
In addition to photos and archival footage of his childhood, the film also depicts the difficult aspects of his life, especially his battle to communicate through his computer, a process about which he meets regularly with technology experts. In addition to the A-list contributors who are also his fans, interviewees include Hawking's ex-wife Jane, past and current students and graduate assistants, nurses and his literary agent, among others.
Stephen Hawking became paralyzed due to motor neuron disease, but his intellectual brilliance, his refusal to quit and his trademark dry wit - all showcased in Hawking - have propelled him to international fame and celebrity. He has sold more than 10 million copies of his groundbreaking book A Brief History of Time, spoken before thousands of people at sell-out live shows and appeared on iconic TV shows such as "The Simpsons" and "Star Trek." He counts as friends many of the most famous people on the planet. He has met with the pope, experienced zero gravity, received the Presidential Medal of Freedom and much more.
"Through Hawking's own words, as well as those closest to him, PBS viewers have an opportunity to get a fresh perspective on one of the greatest scientists of our time," added Ben Bowie, Executive Producer. "We are honored to have had the opportunity to film and capture the most intimate details of Stephen Hawking's life."
Executive Producer: Ben Bowie
Producer/Filmmaker/ Director: Stephen Finnigan
Producer: Darlow Smithson Productions Ltd. for PBS and Channel 4 (UK), (c) 2013
About Darlow Smithson Productions
Darlow Smithson Productions (DSP) is one of the world's leading factual production companies. With an unsurpassed reputation for producing high-quality television programs for UK, US and international broadcasters, DSP has achieved worldwide industry recognition for its groundbreaking output. DSP is the proud recipient of more than 40 awards, including recognition from prestigious organizations such as BAFTA, The Royal Television Society and the US Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. From its base in London, DSP works across a wide range of non-fiction television -- from prestigious feature-length documentaries to flagship series and from long-running popular formats to high-quality fact-based drama. DSP also specializes in the use of advanced computer graphics and quality dramatic re-enactment and is an acknowledged leader in theatrical documentary.
About PBS Distribution
PBS Distribution is the leading media distributor for the public television community, both domestically and internationally, extending the reach of these programs beyond broadcast while generating revenue for the public television system and our production partners.
PBS Distribution offers a diverse range of programming to our customers, including Ken Burns's films, documentaries from award-winning series such as NOVA, FRONTLINE, AMERICAN MASTERS, NATURE, and AMERICAN EXPERIENCE, dramas from MASTERPIECE, as well as films from independent producers and popular children's programming. As a multi-channel distributor, PBS Distribution pursues wholesale/retail sales, consumer and educational sales through PBS-branded catalogs and online shops, and international broadcast and video sales. PBS Distribution is also a leader in offering programming through digital platforms including internet and mobile devices.
Street Date: February 4, 2014
Run Time: 90 Minutes