article by Dan McNary via Variety.com
“Empire” star and Golden Globes award winner Taraji P. Henson will play mathematics genius Katherine Johnson in “” for Fox 2000.
The studio has been developing the adaptation of the Margot Lee Shetterly book “Hidden Figures: The Story of the African-American Women Who Helped Win the Space Race,” to published by this fall by HarperCollins.
The story centers on Johnson, a brilliant African-American mathematician who, along with her colleagues Dorothy Vaughn and Mary Jackson, served as the brains behind one of the greatest operations in U.S. history — the momentous launch of astronaut John Glenn into orbit, and his safe return. The three women crossed all gender, race and professional lines while embarking on the mission.
Glenn flew the Friendship 7 mission in 1962 and became the first American to orbit the Earth. Johnson was recently honored by Barack Obama with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
“St. Vincent” director Ted Melfi is attached to direct. Producers are Peter Chernin and Jenno Topping through Chernin Entertainment; Donna Gigliotti of Levantine Films; and Melfi.
Elizabeth Gabler and Marisa Paiva are overseeing the project for Fox 2000. Fox has already set a January 13, 2017 release date for “Hidden Figures.”