"Wit" is a poignant drama that delves deep into the life of Vivian Bearing, an English professor diagnosed with terminal ovarian cancer. The film, adapted from the Pulitzer Prize-winning play by Margaret Edson, chronicles Vivian's journey as she undergoes rigorous treatment and reflects on her life, her work, and her relationships.
As she grapples with the harsh realities of her diagnosis, Vivian finds herself re-evaluating her life's choices, her relationship with her students, and her deep passion for the metaphysical poetry of John Donne. The narrative is a profound exploration of life, death, and the human spirit.
Release Date: March 9, 2001
Duration: 99 minutes
Country of Origin: United States
Cast & Crew
- Emma Thompson as Vivian Bearing
- Christopher Lloyd as Dr. Harvey Kelekian
- Eileen Atkins as E.M. Ashford
- Audra McDonald as Susie Monahan
Director: Mike Nichols
Writers: Margaret Edson (play), Emma Thompson and Mike Nichols (screenplay adaptation)
Where to Stream
United States (US)
There are currently no streaming offers in the US.
Streaming: For those in the US, the movie is available on Max Amazon Channel, Max, and DIRECTV.
There are currently no streaming offers in the AU.
Streaming: Australians can catch the movie on Foxtel Now.
There are currently no streaming offers in the BR.
Streaming: In Brazil, the movie is streaming on HBO Max and Oi Play.
There are currently no streaming offers in the FR.
Streaming: The French audience can enjoy the movie on the Pass Warner Amazon Channel.
Production Company: Avenue Pictures, HBO Films
Budget: Estimated at $5 million
Box Office Collection: As "Wit" was primarily an HBO television film, it did not have a traditional box office release. However, it garnered significant attention and viewership on the HBO platform.
Critical Reception: "Wit" was met with widespread critical acclaim, particularly for its sensitive portrayal of a woman's battle with terminal illness and the profound questions it raises about life and mortality.
Emma Thompson's performance as Vivian Bearing was lauded for its depth, vulnerability, and strength. Critics praised the seamless transition of the story from stage to screen, noting that the film retained the emotional intensity and intellectual depth of the original play.
The New York Times described the film as "a powerful meditation on life and death, anchored by a stunning performance from Thompson." Roger Ebert, in his review, wrote, "Thompson delivers a masterclass in acting, capturing the essence of a woman who is both a scholar and a patient, trying to find meaning in the face of impending death."
Audience Reception: Audiences resonated with the film's emotional depth and the raw portrayal of Vivian's journey. Many viewers found themselves deeply moved by the narrative, with some describing it as a transformative experience. The film's exploration of John Donne's metaphysical poetry added a unique layer, making it not just a story about illness but also about the search for meaning and understanding in the face of adversity.
Awards & Nominations: "Wit" received numerous awards and nominations. Emma Thompson won the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in a Miniseries or Television Film. The film itself was nominated for Best Miniseries or Television Film. Mike Nichols won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Directing for a Miniseries, Movie, or Dramatic Special, and the film secured several other Emmy nominations in various categories.