Photograph 51, seen in its West Coast premiere in 2009 at the Fountain Theatre, is now being made into a movie produced by Darren Aronofsky (Black Swan) and actress Rachel Weisz. Playwright Anna Ziegler is writing the screenplay.
The riveting true-life drama about scientist Rosalind Franklin and her role in the discovery of the structure of DNA drew strong reviews at the Fountain, winning 5 StageSceneLA awards and being nominated for several others (including Ovation, LADCC, and LA Weekly award noms). It starred Aria Alpert as Franklin, and was directed by Simon Levy. The play has since been produced in regional theatres around the country.
The film version has just been awarded a grant from the Tribeca Film Institute Sloan Filmmaker Fund, the nonprofit affiliated with the Tribeca Film Festival and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation created to support film projects that dramatize science or tech issues, or feature scientists in central roles.
Darren Aronofsky (Oscar nominated director of Black Swan), actress Rachel Weisz, Ari Handel, and Audrey Rosenberg are producers for the film.
As writer Anna Ziegler explains: “I guess it all started when Manhattan Theatre Club was going to produce Photograph 51. It was slated for their 2009-10 season, I think. When that was happening, they sent the script to Rachel Weisz to see if she wanted to play Rosalind. She wasn’t available, but she really loved the play and got in touch with me directly to see if I’d write the screenplay for her. So I’ve been working on it with her, and with folks at Protozoa Pictures –Darren’s production company–for the past year and a half or so. Then I won a grant from the Tribeca Film Festival this past spring so the whole project has more momentum now.”
Congratulations and Bravo to playwright Anna Ziegler! We are so pleased and proud of you!
See you at the movies!