Amanda Seyfried is fresh off an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress in Mank for playing Marion Davies. But she remains in the mood to portray real-life figures, as she’s signed on to play controversial Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes in Hulu’s upcoming limited series, The Dropout.
The show is based on the podcast of the same name, and was already in development with Kate McKinnon in the lead role. But the SNL star had to back out of the project last month, opening the door for Seyfried to take her place. Hulu reportedly offered Saoirse Ronan the role first, but she turned it down.
The Dropout will revolve around how Theranos founder Holmes raised hundreds of millions to fund the biotech start-up while becoming a media darling. All while hiding the fact that her supposedly game-changing blood-testing machine didn’t really work.
Holmes’ rise and fall has been chronicled in John Carreyrou‘s book Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup and Alex Gibney‘s HBO documentary The Inventor: Out For Blood In Silicon Valley. There’s also a narrative film based on Holmes’ downfall in the works set to star Jennifer Lawrence, but it looks like The Dropout will arrive first.
Elizabeth Meriwether (New Girl) will be the showrunner and also executive produce alongside Rebecca Jarvis, who hosted the popular podcast. Fox Searchlight’s TV division is developing the show.
It’s no surprise that Holmes’ rise-and-fall keeps getting chronicled, as it’s pretty much the definition of stranger than fiction. Even though Holmes’ story is now very well known, The Dropout should still be a popular show when it eventually premieres.
Filming is expected to begin filming this summer. Unfortunately for Seyfried, that means she may be in for some sweaty days wearing Holmes’ trademark black turtleneck. Seyfried will next be seen in Netflix’s upcoming horror-thriller Things Heard And Seen alongside James Norton and Natalia Dyer. That arrives on Friday, April 30.