-- Beyond trying to grasp what he describes as a “beyond wildest dreams’ achievement, newly-minted Oscar winner Eddie Redmayne has a bigger reality to face: where to keep his golden statue.
“We have a very small apartment in London so I don’t know where he’ll stand but, like I said in the speech, we’ll make sure it keeps polished,” the “Theory of Everything” star told “Good Morning America” anchor George Stephanopoulos just moments after stepping off the stage at Sunday night’s Academy Awards ceremony.
In his Best Actor acceptance speech, Redmayne called himself just the “custodian” of the statue, saying it really belongs to, “all of those people around the world battling ALS. It belongs to one exceptional family, Stephen, Jane, Jonathan and the Hawking children.”
“They were so generous to us throughout the process and so kind and so funny and sort of vivacious people,” Redmayne said backstage. “There was a responsibility that came with that.”
“We wanted to make sure we did their story proud and so this means a great deal,” he said of his Oscar.
Hawking, 73, has said that when he was watching Redmayne in the film, he almost believed Redmayne really was him.
Redmayne told Stephanopolous that was the “greatest review of my life” and then explained what he went through to try to catch up with Hawking’s incredible mind.
“Don’t spoil the evening with my limited knowledge of psychics,” Redmayne joked. “I gave up psychics when I was about 15 and I’d go to these incredibly complicated websites to try and understand string theory and what Stephen had done with black holes.”
“And then I’d go to like astronomy for kids dot org to kind of like remind myself of the basics,” he said.
“The Theory of Everything” drew praise though from going beyond Hawking’s intellect to focus on the love story between him and his first wife, Jane Hawking, played in the film by Felicity Jones.
“My dance partner in this,” Redmayne called Jones, who received a Best Actress nomination for the role. "She’s breathtaking.”
“We sort of challenged each other while we were filming and under James Marsh’s direction, it was kind of, that was the thing we were aspiring to,” Redmayne said of the love story. “Although specific obstacles they had to overcome, it was a really uniquely passionate human love story.”
Hawking later took to Facebook to congratulate Redmayne on his win, writing, "Congratulations to Eddie Redmayne for winning an ?#?Oscar? for playing me in The Theory of Everything Movie," he wrote. "Well done Eddie, I'm very proud of you."
He signed the message "SH."
"I don't think this ever happens again," said Redmayne. "We'll definitely celebrate this one."