The University of Chicago News Office
Sept. 30, 2003 Press Contact: Steve McFarland
(773) 702-8364

Hopkins, Paltrow, and Gyllenhaal to film alumnus David Auburn’s Proof on University campus

    Traffic Advisory:

A reduced Proof crew will return to Swift Hall on the afternoon of Friday, October 10. No parking will be available on University Ave. between 59th and 57th Streets from now until 9pm on Friday.

In the coming weeks, the University of Chicago will host production crews for the film adaptation of Proof, the Pulitzer Prize-winning play written by alumnus David Auburn (A.B. ’91). Starring an Oscar Award-winning cast led by Gwyneth Paltrow, Anthony Hopkins, and Jake Gyllenhaal, the production will be directed by John Madden (Shakespeare in Love) and distributed by Miramax Productions.

The story centers on a young woman (Paltrow) who has come to the aid of her father, a brilliant University of Chicago mathematician (Hopkins) struggling with mental illness.

Auburn’s play debuted at the Manhattan Theater Club in New York in 2000 and was instantly hailed by critics. In addition to a two-year, sold-out run on Broadway, the play was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in Drama and the Tony Award for Best Play in 2001. In an effort to preserve the original integrity and spirit of the play, film producers Jeff Sharp and John Hart recruited Auburn to adapt the script for the big screen.

On-campus filming is tentatively slated to take place Sept. 26 and Oct. 6-8, focusing in and near Rockefeller Chapel, Eckhart Hall, Swift Hall, the Classics Quadrangle, and other locations yet to be determined. Significant portions of the film will also be shot in Hyde Park and downtown Chicago throughout late September and early October. Additional scenes will be shot in London later this year.

Some disruptions to traffic and parking are expected while the crew is on campus, but Larry Arbeiter, Director of University Communications, said that every effort will be taken to ensure that University life continues as unimpeded as possible.

“These productions are always somewhat disruptive, despite our best efforts, and that's why we decline far more film requests than we grant,” Arbeiter said. “But David has written a terrific story based at the University, and the producers and Miramax have assembled a very impressive cast and crew. I think most faculty members and students will agree that a few disruptions to our normal activities will be a very reasonable trade-off if we can help Proof reach millions of movie viewers.”

For up-to-date information on the status of the project, including street closures and temporary limitations to building access, please click here.
Last modified at 03:35 PM CST on Thursday, October 09, 2003.

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