‘True Blood’ Creator Alan Ball and Oprah Winfrey Join Forces for HBO Film

May 12, 2010  •  Post A Comment

Emmy winners Alan Ball ("True Blood") and Oprah Winfrey will co-produce an HBO film adaptation of the novel, "The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks," reports the AP.

Ball also won an Emmy for writing HBO’s "Six Feet Under" and an Academy Award for writing "American Beauty."

Ball will develop the TV movie with Winfrey’s Harpo Films studio. The Rebecca Skloot book tells the true story of Henrietta Lacks, a poor black woman whose blood, as it turned out, had very special properties. 

WIthout Lacks knowledge or permission her cells, now known as  HeLa cells, were vital for developing the polio vaccine; uncovered secrets of cancer, viruses, and the effects of the atom bomb; helped lead to important advances like in vitro fertilization, cloning, and gene mapping; and have been bought and sold by the billions. 

The findings from that research made the pharmaceutical industry a fortune.

Lacks died from cervical cancer in 1951.


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