Ari Handel on leaving science

"Maybe one of the reasons I'm not a practicing scientist is that I liked lab meetings more than I liked the lab."

- Ari Handel, as quoted in The Scientist

Ivan Oransky brings us news of Ari Handel, a neuroscientist who left the lab after earning his Ph.D. in order to bridge the gap between science and film. He co-wrote The Fountain with Darren Aronofsky, a movie about the quest for the fountain of youth in three different time streams. In one of these streams, the main character is a scientist (Hugh Jackman) looking for a cure for his wife's brain tumor. To help translate the science into understandable language, Handel used his own expertise as well as experiences gained visiting various labs and operating theaters.

The film has received lukewarm reviews in Britain. According to Peter Bradshaw, writing few days ago in The Guardian, "[Aronofsky] has, as they say in Hollywood, laid an egg. An egg so vast they will have to knock down the walls of the cinema to get it out every time the film is shown, employing navvies in gas masks for the task."

You can read the rest of the article in the January 2007 print edition of The Scientist, with a more extensive online version available here.