As with many wild and dramatic stories, the tale of Theranos and its former CEO Elizabeth Holmes is getting multiple adaptations. The Jennifer Lawrence-led Bad Blood, which was just snapped up by Apple, will likely get the most attention. (Expect it to get plenty of Oscar love, like Adam McKay’s recent films, Vice and The Big Short.) But don’t count out Hulu’s miniseries, The Dropout. First announced in 2019 with Kate McKinnon as the infamous serial fibber, Elizabeth Holmes, the series will now star Amanda Seyfried when it premieres on March 3rd, 2022.
Judging from the first round of pictures, Seyfried certainly captures the wide-eyed magnetism of Holmes. It’s also surprising to see the great Naveen Andrews (Lost, Sense8) as Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani, Theranos’ former COO and Holmes’ former boyfriend. According to Hulu, the series will follow “an unbelievable tale of ambition and fame gone terribly wrong. How did the world’s youngest self-made female billionaire lose it all in the blink of an eye?”
Theranos managed to raise over $700 million from investors due to its seemingly miraculous device, the Edison. It was a blood testing machine that was supposed to test for a wide range of illnesses. But of course, it was all a lie. Reporting from the Wall Street Journal and others revealed that the company’s technology never actually worked. Ultimately, the SEC charged Theranos, Holmes and Balwani with “massive fraud.”
Alex Gibney’s HBO documentary, The Inventor, did a serviceable job of covering the drama around Theranos, and Holmes’ unusual mystique. But there’s also plenty of ground to cover in a dramatic adaptation.