Eddie Redmayne’s role as Professor Stephen Hawking in the Theory of Everything has helped raise awareness of Motor Neurone Disease (MND) and raised more than £20,000 for charity.
Born and bred in Hammersmith, the BAFTA-winning actor’s role charting the physicist‘s academic and personal journey has boosted the profile of the dedicated charity, Motor Neurone Disease Association (MNDA), while raising vital cash funds.
Director of External Affairs at MNDA Chris James said the film has done a great job in putting the degenerative condition into the spotlight.
“It’s been a fantastic opportunity to raise awareness,” he explained.
“Both Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones talked about MND in their promotion of the film and this is really important because it gives people hope when they see that awareness is being raised.”
Redmayne, a staunch supporter of the charity, received critical acclaim for his portrayal of Professor Stephen Hawking who was diagnosed with the condition in 1963 aged just 21.
“His performance was so accurate in showing the impact of MND on someone,” said Mr James.
“He worked so hard in his research, talking to people with MND and health professionals to make sure he perfected the role.”
Charity volunteers have travelled to cinemas across the UK collecting cash in the hope of raising £30,000.
This comes off the back of last summer’s ALS Ice Bucket Challenge which raised a whopping £7m for the charity.
This money has been ploughed into research projects and improving care and support for people with MND.
Mr James added: “The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge was a great benefit for us and this could be the start of new research projects that get us to a point where the world is free of MND.”
The charity is set to invest £8.5m funding new research projects, expanding the number of MND care centres – now at 19 but set to expand to 22 – and further increasing awareness.
Image courtesy of Focus Features via YouTube, with thanks