Tag Archives: Hidden Figures

Octavia Spencer joins “Hidden Figures” movie

A few days ago we reported that current Hollywood It Girl Taraji P Henson will star in Hidden Figures, a film adaption of the book by Margot Lee Shetterly about African American women mathematicians who were instrumental in getting NASA missions off the ground. Now Variety is reporting that Octavia Spenser will join the cast as one of the women.


Oprah Winfrey and Viola Davis are reportedly being pursued for the project as well. Apparently they want to start production fairly soon, so we should know who the rest of the cast is in the next few weeks.

I’m excited about this movie, I’m a space nerd who has watched Apollo 13 an embarrassing number of times and owns the complete DVD set of From Earth to the Moon. Yeah, I’m hard core. Aside from the all-star cast we already know, there is an all-start cast behind the camera. Ted Melfi (St Vincent) is set to direct. Donna Gigliotti (Shakespeare In Love, Silver Linings Playbook) will produce and Allison Schroeder (Pineapple Express, Shipping Julia) penned the screenplay.

This movie is gonna rule!

Taraji P Henson to star in film about women who helped win the space race

If you ever watched the movie Apollo 13, and I have many times, you would think that back then NASA was all nerdy white guys in skinny black ties. Turns out that’s not quite the case, there was a trio of brilliant Black women mathematicians in the back room performing critical calculations in the age before computers. Their mad math skills influenced every major space program from Mercury through the Shuttle.

The women were Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughn and Mary Jackson and now we get a movie about them. based on the book Hidden Figures: The Story of the African-American Women Who Helped Win the Space Race by Margot Lee Shetterly. The movie, titled Hidden Figures, will star none other than Taraji P Henson as Katherine Johnson.

Former NASA mathematician Katherine Johnson is seen after President Barack Obama presented her with the Presidential Medal of Freedom, Tuesday, Nov. 24, 2015, during a ceremony in the East Room of the White House in Washington. Credits: NASA/Bill Ingalls

You can read more about Katerine Johnson on the NASA site.  I did want to share this little tidbit though:

John Glenn requested that she personally recheck the calculations made by the new electronic computers before his flight aboard Friendship 7 – the mission on which he became the first American to orbit the Earth.

Isn’t that the coolest thing?

Hidden Figures is stated for release Jan. 13, 2017 to coincide with Dr. Martin Luther King day.