On Thursday, October 27 in downtown Manhattan, Jeremy Irons and Neil deGrasse Tyson gave guests a great dinner experience at Bagatelle, where the two, along with cast and crew from the film The Man Who Knew Infinity, answered questions about filming and the poignant story behind the film. This was a stop in the film’s Awards Campaign where Irons hopes to snag a supporting actor nomination.
With Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Line 39 Wines, the dinner was a great success as guests learned about the filmmaking process behind The Man Who Knew Infinity, in which Irons plays G.H. Hardy, a professor who mentors a young mathematician, played by Dev Patel (Slumdog Millionaire). Along with Irons, producer Ed Pressman, writer and director Matthew Brown, and costar Devika Bhise were also in attendance, sharing their experiences working on the film.
The film is centered around the true story of Srinivasa Ramanujan, an Indian mathematician who, during World War I, went from the poor neighborhood of Madras, India, to gaining entrance to Cambridge University. There, he went on to solve thousands of mathematical theories and equations and was taken under the wing of G.H. Hardy to discover his full potential.
Prior to the dinner, Tyson and Irons had a small Q&A about preparing for the film. Here’s a small snip it of the night:
Tyson: Presumably, you prepared to be a lion, when you were in The Lion King as Scar, but in this movie, you’re not only acting, you actually have to put equations on the chalkboard, writing Greek letters. And there are ways we write those equations that an actor would not necessarily know and they don’t teach that to you in acting school. So where does that come from?
Irons: Before I start, there’s this movie Tom Hanks did a couple of years ago where terrorists took over a vessel he was on. Now I know for a fact that Tom cannot drive a tanker. Well you get a guy called Ken Ono, and apparently, I’m told because I know nothing but I’m told by people like you, that apparently Ken Ono is one of the foremost mathematicians in the world. And I go to Ken and I tell him ‘This is what I have to say, and this is what I have to put up on the board. Am I doing this right or will mathematicians laugh me out of court? And Ken says ‘No, we’ll get it right.’ And he does all of the calculations and then he checks that everything we’re doing is right. But then as an actor, and actors are sort of stupid people when it comes to mathematics, you learn it.
Also at the dinner was Manjul Bhargava, a professor of mathematics at Princeton University who received the Fields Medal in 2014 for his contribution in using geometry in solving new equations. With Bhargava there giving moral support, as well as informing everyone that the film would head to the White House for screening in the Office of Science and Technology.
With the film providing such a keen insight into a story of overcoming discrimination and showcasing one’s true value, the film is a must watch for budding mathematicians and fond storytellers alike. Watch the trailer below.
Earlier this week, Ed Pressman, A-List Communications and sponsors Line 39 Wines and STK proudly presented the Los Angeles leg of the Awards Screening and Reception Series for the film. That was a night of exceptional food from STK and wine fromLine 39 Wines served alongside a captivating post-screening Q & A and discussion with Jeremy Irons moderated by actress, author AND mathematician Danica Mae McKellar (“The Wonder Years”). Attending talent included Peter Gallagher (“Law & Order: SVU”) and Robert Forster (LONDON HAS FALLEN), munching on mouthwatering morsels including Mini Tuna Tartare, Truffle Fries, Mini Lobster Rolls, and lil’ BRG s, while drinking Line 39 Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon wines. Jeremy Irons brought a special guest to walk the red carpet with him, his dog, Smudge.[slideshow]