Jacqueline Christy, Director/Producer

Sloan Grant(s) Received: 2018, Production Award, NYU 

Project Type: Short Film 

Genre: Historical Drama 

Length: 21 pages 

Field of Science: Astronomy 

Stage: Development 


Starcatcher is the true story of Williamina “Mina” Fleming, a Scottish immigrant who is abandoned by her husband shortly after their arrival in the US. She is 21 years old, pregnant, without means or friends, and the year is 1878. Mina finds work as a housemaid for Edward Charles Pickering, Director in Residence at Harvard College Observatory. Pickering is undergoing an extensive research project to classify stellar spectra, but when he declares that “Even his Scottish maid could do a better job” than his team of idle male scientists, Mina rises to the occasion in a way that nobody could have anticipated—going on to discover the Horsehead Nebula in 1888 and later leaving this residence as the leading female astronomer of her time.