LOS ANGELES, May 2 (UPI) -- Oprah Winfrey has signed on to star in the screen adaptation of Rebecca Skloot's nonfiction book The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, HBO Films announced Monday.
Veteran Broadway director-producer George C. Wolfe will helm the picture from his screenplay, starting this summer.
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," a synopsis said.
"Told through the eyes of her daughter, Deborah Lacks, 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."
Winfrey, Alan Ball, Peter Macdissi, Carla Gardini and Lydia Dean Pilcher will executive produce, and Skloot will co-executive produce the film, which is a production of Your Face Goes Here Entertainment, Harpo Films and Cine Mosaic.
Henrietta Lacks' sons David Lacks, Jr. and Zakariyya Rahman and granddaughter Jeri Lacks, are consultants.