Soon you’ll be able to watch a scripted series about the creation of the birth control pill alongside documentaries about nature and foreign cultures. According to The Hollywood Reporter, National Geographic has plans to develop “The Birth of the Pill,” a scripted adaptation of Jonathan Eig
’s 2014 nonfiction book of the same name.
Eig’s book traces Planned Parenthood founder and feminist Margaret Sanger and philanthropist Katherine McCormick’s fight to provide women with safe, reliable contraception. With scientist Gregory Pincus and Ob-gyn John Rock, Sanger and McCormick “took on the scientific establishment, the church, and cultural norms in their fight,” THR summarizes.
Nat Geo is developing “The Birth of the Pill” in partnership with Fox. “Unforgettable” director Denise Di Novi
will exec produce the project with Alison Greenspan
, and Sonar Entertainment is producing with R.J. Cutler
. Di Novi, Greenspan, and Cutler previously collaborated on the 2014 romance “If I Stay
It was originally reported that Audrey Wells
(“Under the Tuscan Sun
”) would write the first episode and Cutler would direct, but it’s unclear whether that plan is still going forward. Wells’ role was not mentioned in THR.
The source also details the other women-created narrative projects in the works at Nat Geo, including the history of the Ebola virus, “The Hot Zone
,” and an untitled drama about the beginning of National Geographic itself.
“The Hot Zone
,” from Lynda Obst
(“Insterstellar”), traces Ebola’s inception in the central African rain forest and its eventual migration to the U.S. The drama centers on “a U.S. Army veterinarian, working with a secret military Swat team, who puts herself in peril trying to contain the outbreak,” THR writes. “Under the Dome
” writers Kelly Souders
and Brian Peterson
will pen the script with Jeff Vintar
(“I, Robot”). Fox 21
and Scott Free are exec producing.
National Geographic’s origin story will be exec produced by Marti Noxon
”). The untitled project “kicks off in the 1960s when a field producer is put in charge of two production teams as they shoot Nat Geo’s first TV documentaries in Siberia and Australia, braving espionage, scandal, and hostile environments.” Noxon is also producing under her Tiny Pyro
Productions banner. The project is written by Erik Jendresen
(“Band of Brothers
”), also an Ep.
“This scripted development slate further solidifies our commitment to developing diverse projects with themes and issues that resonate and are relevant to our audience,” Courteney Monroe, Nat Geo Global Networks CEO, commented. “We are working with the best storytellers in the world to tell these very human stories that we hope will create global conversation and change the way viewers look at the world around them.”
“The Birth of the Pill” TV Adaptation Headed to National Geographic was originally published in Women and Hollywood on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.