A Beautiful Mind is a 2001 American biographical drama film based on the life of John Nash, a Nobel Laureate in Economics. The film was directed by Ron Howard, from a screenplay written by Akiva Goldsman. It was inspired by a bestselling, Pulitzer Prize-nominated 1998 book of the same name by Sylvia Nasar. The film stars Russell Crowe, along with Ed Harris, Jennifer Connelly, Paul Bettany and Christopher Plummer in supporting roles. The story begins in the early years of a young prodigy named John Nash. Early in the film, Nash begins developing paranoid schizophrenia and endures delusional episodes while painfully watching the loss and burden his condition brings on his wife and friends.
The film opened in the United States cinemas on December 21, 2001. It went to gross over $313 million worldwide and to win four Academy Awards, for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Supporting Actress. It was also nominated for Best Actor, Best Film Editing, Best Makeup, and Best Original Score.
It was well received by critics, but has been criticized for its inaccurate portrayal of some aspects of Nash's life, especially his other family and a son born out of wedlock.
In 1947, John Nash (Russell Crowe) arrives at Princeton University. He is co-recipient, with Martin Hansen (Josh Lucas), of the prestigious Carnegie Scholarship for mathematics. At a reception he meets a group of other promising math and science graduate students, Richard Sol (Adam Goldberg), Ainsley (Jason Gray-Stanford), and Bender (Anthony Rapp). He also meets his roommate Charles Herman (Paul Bettany), a literature student, and an unlikely friendship begins.
Nash comes under increasing pressure to publish, both from the mathematics department chairman and in the form of rivalry with Hansen. But he refuses until he finds a truly original idea. His inspiration comes when he and his fellow graduate students discuss how to approach a group of women at a bar. Hansen quotes Adam Smith and advocates "every man for himself", but Nash argues that a cooperative approach would lead to better chances of success. This leads to a new concept of governing dynamics which Nash develops and publishes. On the strength of this he is offered an appointment at MIT where Sol and Bender join him.