The Theory of Mourning: Stars pay tribute to Dr. Stephen Hawking
Sonja Flemming/CBS(HOLLYWOOD) — The passing of legendary scientist and pop culture icon Dr. Stephen Hawking, who died early Wednesday at age 76, drew reactions from a wide range of celebrities, not least of all Eddie Redmayne, who won an Oscar for portraying Hawking in the movie The Theory of Everything.
In a statement to People magazine, Redmayne says, “We have lost a truly beautiful mind, an astonishing scientist and the funniest man I have ever had the pleasure to meet. My love and thoughts are with his extraordinary family.”
Felicity Jones, who played Hawking’s wife Jane in The Theory of Everything, said in a statement to the Hollywood Reporter, “So sad to hear of Stephen’s death. Stephen Hawking pushed the boundaries of who we are and what we believe. An extraordinary human who could bring humor to the most despairing moments and find hope in the unknown. He showed the world that anything is possible.”
Benedict Cumberbatch, who portrayed the scientist in the 2004 television movie Hawking, gave People a statement describing him as “a truly great man whose profundity was found both in his work and the communication of that work…He virtually created the publishing genre of popular science. A heroic feat to bring the wondrous complexities of the universe to all outside of specialists in this field.”
Cumberbatch’s statement continued, in part, “I will miss our margaritas but will raise one to the stars to celebrate your life and the light of understanding you shone so brightly on them for the rest of us.”
Hawking famously guest-starred on Star Trek: The Next Generation, Futurama, The Simpsons and The Big Bang Theory. Big Bang star Mayim Bialik tweeted, “As we near Pi day (3.14) I join the global community in mourning the loss of the greatest physicist of our era. #StephenHawking is free from the physical constraints of this earthly condition we all exist in and he is soaring above us now marveling at it all.”
Stars ranging from Cher to Katy Perry to Macaulay Culkin also took to social media to express their sadness:
Culkin: “I just heard about Stephen Hawking’s passing. He was both a genius and my favorite Simpsons character. We’ll miss you, buddy.”
Star Trek’s George Takei: “One of the greatest minds our species has ever produced is returned to the stars. It is a great loss to the scientific community. He was a hero to so many. Stephen Hawking, let us honor your work by respecting always the importance of scientific inquiry.”
Cher: “Dear Stephen,Will Remember Our luncheon Forever. It was amazing.I Know we argued about The Value Of History (‘Cher,when Time Travel Is perfected HISTORY Will Obsolete’) But as I Told you ‘history Is like a friend, and [numbers] are like [chicken] scratches to me. Dyslexia. RIP Dear [heart].”
Mira Sorvino: “I am very saddened to hear of Stephen Hawking’s passing. His book was an enormous influence on me in college and meeting and getting to talk with him was one of the great thrills of my life. You are shining in the heavens you so loved now!”
Neil deGrasse Tyson: “His passing has left an intellectual vacuum in his wake. But it’s not empty. Think of it as a kind of vacuum energy permeating the fabric of spacetime that defies measure.”
Katy Perry: “there’s a big black hole in my heart hours before Pi day. Rest In Peace @Steven_Hawking… See you in the next.”
Zoe Saldana: “Farewell to a brilliant mind. Thank you for being so generous with your knowledge in the brief time you were with us.”
Foo Fighters: “‘Remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet’ – RIP Stephen Hawking you f***ing legend.”
Sam Smith: “‘Science is not only a disciple of reason but, also, one of romance and passion’ – what an incredible human. Every time we look up at the stars we will think of you Stephen Hawking.”
Simpsons executive producer Al Jean posted a photo of an action figure of Hawking as his Simpsons character, and wrote, “RIP Stephen Hawking. A sense of humor as vast as the universe.”
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