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Published on Feb 2, 2012
The Way of All Flesh by Adam Curtis In 1998, Modern Times: The Way of All Flesh, a one-hour BBC documentary on Henrietta Lacks and HeLa directed by Adam Curtis, won the Best Science and Nature Documentary at the San Francisco International Film Festival. Immediately following the film's airing in 1997, an article on HeLa cells, Lacks, and her family was published by reporter Jacques Kelly in The Baltimore Sun. In the 1990s, the Dundalk Eagle published the first article on her in a newspaper in Baltimore City and Baltimore County, and it continues to announce upcoming local commemorative activities. The Lacks family was also honored at the Smithsonian Institution. In 2001, it was announced that the National Foundation for Cancer Research would be honoring "the late Henrietta Lacks for the contributions made to cancer research and modern medicine" on September 14. Because of the events of September 11, 2001, the event was canceled. In 2000 Mal Webb released a CD with a song about Lacks called Helen Lane. In her 2010 book, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, Rebecca Skloot documents the histories of both the HeLa cell line and the Lacks family. Henrietta's husband, David Lacks, was told little following her death. Suspicions fueled by racial issues prevalent in the South were compounded by issues of class and education. For their part, members of the Lacks family were kept in the dark about the existence of the tissue line. When its existence was revealed in two articles written in March 1976 by Michael Rogers, one in the Detroit Free Press and one in Rolling Stone, family members were confused about how Henrietta's cells could have been taken without consent and how they could still be alive 25 years after her death. In May 2010, The Virginian-Pilot published two articles on Lacks, HeLa, and her family, which mentions that the Morehouse School of Medicine has donated the money for Henrietta's grave as well as her daughter Elsie, who died in 1955, to finally have headstones. Her grandchildren wrote her epitaph: "Henrietta Lacks August 01, 1920 -- October 04, 1951 In loving memory of a phenomenal woman, wife and mother who touched the lives of many. Here lies Henrietta Lacks (HeLa). Her immortal cells will continue to help mankind forever. Eternal Love and Admiration, From Your Family" In May 2010, HBO announced that Oprah Winfrey and Alan Ball would develop a film project based on Skloot's book. On May 17, 2010, NBC ran a fictionalized version of Lacks' story on Law & Order, titled "Immortal". An article in Slate called the episode "shockingly close to the true story."  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adam_Cur...