Goldsberry will play 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.
Veteran Broadway director-producer George C. Wolfe (HBO’s Lackawanna Blues; Tony winner for Angels In America) wrote the adaptation and will direct. Winfrey and Carla Gardini executive produce through Harpo Films, Alan Ball and Peter MacDissi exec produce through Your Face Goes Here Entertainment and Lydia Dean Pilcher exec produces through Cine Mosaic Productions. Skloot is co-executive producer. Henrietta Lacks’ sons David Lacks, Jr. and Zakariyya Rahman; her granddaughter Jeri Lacks; and her grandchildren Alfred Carter Jr. and LaTonya Carter are consultants on the project.
Goldsberry recently won the 2016 Tony Award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Musical for her role as Angelica Schuyler in Broadway’s mega-hit Hamilton. Her other Broadway credits include Rent, The Color Purple, The Lion King, and Good People. She also is known for her role as Geneva Pine on The Good Wife and Evangeline Williamson from ABC’s One Life to Live which earned her two Daytime Emmy nominations. She recently signed on for Netflix sci-fi drama Altered Carbon. Goldsberry is repped by Innovative Artists and Sweet 180.