Oprah Winfrey has showcased her incredible acting ability in the last couple years with hit such as, Selma, The Color Purple, and Lee Daniels’ The Butler. While these were supporting roles, Oprah will now star in HBO Films’ The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, based on Rebecca Skloot’s critically acclaimed, bestselling nonfiction book of the same name.
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks tells the true story of Henrietta Lacks, an African-American woman whose cells were used to create the first immortal human cell line. Told through the eyes of her daughter, Deborah Lacks (Winfrey), the film chronicles her search to learn about the mother she never knew and to understand how the unauthorized harvesting of Lacks’ cancerous cells in 1951 led to unprecedented medical breakthroughs, changing countless lives and the face of medicine forever. It’s a story of medical arrogance and triumph, race, poverty and deep friendship between the unlikeliest of people.
Rebecca Skloot’s “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks,” took more than a decade to research and write, and was an instant hit on the New York Times bestseller list. After its publication, it remained on the list for more than four years.
Filming will begin this summer under the direction of George C. Wolfe (HBO’s Lackawanna Blues, Tony winner for Angels in America) and his screenplay. The project will also be executive produced by Oprah herself.