The Man Who Knew Infinity is a 2015 British biographical drama film based on the 1991 book of the same name by Robert Kanigel. The film stars Dev Patel as the real-life Srinivasa Ramanujan, a mathematician who after growing up poor in Madras, India, earns admittance to Cambridge University during World War I, where he becomes a pioneer in mathematical theories with the guidance of his professor, G. H. Hardy (played by Jeremy Irons).
Filming began in August 2014 at Trinity College, Cambridge. The film had its world premiere as a gala presentation at the 2015 Toronto International Film Festival, and was selected as the opening gala of the 2015 Zurich Film Festival. It also played other film festivals including Singapore International Film Festival and Dubai International Film Festival.
Distinguished mathematicians Manjul Bhargava and Ken Ono are Associate Producers of the film. Ono, the mathematics consultant, is a Guggenheim Fellow, and Bhargava is a winner of the Fields Medal.
After the film’s world premiere, Allan Hunter in Screen Daily found the film to be “a well-heeled, sincere production following the memories of Ramanujan’s English mentor and friend… The film tells such a good story that it is hard to resist. The old-fashioned virtues of a well-told tale and a particularly fine performance from Jeremy Irons should endear the film to that supposedly under-served older demographic who like to turn out for a weekday matinee… Mathematics plays a key role in the story, but in a way that is entirely accessible, allowing the viewer to comprehend the advances that Ramanujan made and why his legacy remains so important almost a century after his death.” Deborah Young in The Hollywood Reporter found the film to be a “respectable but all too conventional biopic”.