Oprah Winfrey spotted in Baltimore as 'Henrietta Lacks' movie films in city

If you're walking around town within the next day or so, you might see a famous former Baltimore resident in her old stomping grounds.

Oprah Winfrey has been spotted around the city this week while filming HBO movie "The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks."


The film, adapted from Rebecca Skloot's 2010 book of the same name, is based on the life of a Baltimore County woman whose cells were taken from her while she was a patient at Johns Hopkins Hospital in 1951. The cells were later harvested without her or her family's knowledge and developed into the first immortal cell line, which continues to be used in medical research.

One of our own, Baltimore Sun politics reporters Yvonne Wenger, spotted Winfrey outside of the Real News Network building while walking to the Sun newsroom Tuesday at around 3:45 p.m.


"I saw this black SUV pull up and I thought it was kind of the same car as the mayor rides in," Wenger said.

"I saw legs swing out of the door, and I expected to see the mayor's fabulous shoes ... and instead I saw what looked like orthopedic shoes, and I thought what, who is this?"

It took her a few seconds before she realized it was Winfrey, who is executive producer of the "Henrietta Lacks" movie and plays the role of Lacks' daughter Deborah in the film.

Winfrey was dressed in a what looked to be a costume with her hair pulled back, said Wenger. (She snapped a few pictures of Winfrey before she was swept inside by security.)

Others spotted Oprah around town, as well.

HBO confirmed that the cast of the movie will be in town for filming, which will take place from Sept. 20 to Sept. 22, according to casting company Marinella Hume Casting's co-founder Bill Marinella. So if you haven't seen Winfrey yet, you may still have a chance.