Kathryn Lo, Writer/Producer
Shukree Tilghman, Producer
Sloan Grant(s) Received: 2021, Sloan Episodic Storytelling Grant, Sundance Institute
Project Type: TV Pilot
Genre: Historical Drama
Length: six 60 minute episodes
Field of Science: Biophysics, X-ray Crystallography
Post-war London—Rosalind Franklin, an accomplished and intense chemist, lands a prestigious job: map the molecular structure of DNA. Despite significant progress, she fights for control over her work amongst back-stabbing colleagues. Elsewhere, Francis Crick and James Watson wish to solve DNA, but without experimenting. Considered scientific clowns, they mysteriously stumble onto the correct model. Devastated by her failure, Rosalind struggles to make a major discovery until she dies from ovarian cancer at 37. Later, Watson trashes Rosalind as a harpy and hack in his best-selling memoir. Incensed, her friend, a journalist, suspects Watson and Crick of stealing Rosalind’s data, and seeks to restore her reputation, by investigating two labs in 1950s England—where Rosalind emerges as the centerpiece to the most important breakthrough of the modern era. Her friend’s biography changes history, casts a shadow on Watson and Crick’s legacy, and places Rosalind within the scientific canon.