HBO said today that The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, starring Oprah Winfrey and Rose Byrne, will premiere at 8 PM Saturday, April 22. It’s the true story of the 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 HBO Films project chronicles her search, with the help of journalist Rebecca Skloot (Byrne), to learn about the mother she never knew and 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.
Co-starring alongside Winfrey and Byrne in the story of medical arrogance and triumph, race, poverty and deep friendship between the unlikeliest of people are Hamilton alum Renée Elise Goldsberry, Rocky Carroll, Kyanna Simone Simpson, Courtney B. Vance, Leslie Uggams, Reg E. Cathey, Reed Birney, Ruben Santiago-Hudson, John Douglas Thompson, Adriane Lenox, Roger Robinson and Melvin Van Peebles
George C. Wolfe directs the Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacksfrom his screenplay, and Winfrey, Alan Ball, Peter Macdissi, Carla Gardini and Lydia Dean Pilcher executive produce. The telefilm is a Your Face Goes Here Entertainment, Harpo Films and Cine Mosaic production.