The new film, based on Rebecca Skloot's 2010 book of the same name, explores the story of Henrietta Lacks and the immortal cell line that is derived from samples taken from her without her knowledge.
In 1951, Lacks had a biopsy taken from her cervix after giving birth. Doctors took two samples while treating a malignant epidermoid carcinoma, one of cancerous cells and one healthy. The cancerous cells became the base of an immortal cell line known as HeLa, which has been used across the world for medical research.
Lacks died at age 31 the same year, but it wasn't until decades later that her daughter, Deborah, investigated her mother's history with the help of Skloot and became aware of the incredible use of her cells.