Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger is set to be the next big screen heroin as Black Bicycle Entertainment and producer Justine Ciarrocchi have joined forces to acquire the rights to Ellen Feldman’s TERRIBLE VIRTUE. The novel is based on the life of Sanger and includes cameo appearances including Emma Goldman, John Reed, Big Bill Haywood, H. G. Wells, and the love of Sanger’s life, Havelock Ellis.
In the vein of The Paris Wife and Loving Frank, Virtue is the provocative story of an indomitable woman who, more than any other, and at a great personal cost, shaped the sexual landscape we inhabit today. Sanger was the daughter of a hard-drinking, smooth-tongued free thinker and a mother worn down by thirteen children. She vowed her life would be different. Trained as a nurse, she fought for social justice beside labor organizers, anarchists, socialists, and other progressives, eventually channeling her energy to one singular cause: legalizing contraception. It was a battle that would pit her against puritanical, patriarchal lawmakers, send her to prison again and again, force her to flee to England, and ultimately change the lives of women across the country and around the world.
The book was published earlier this year by HarperCollins. Feldman is repped by the Emma Sweeney Agency.
Erika Olde will produce for Black Bicycle alongside Ciarrocchi.
Ciarrocchi is also in the works on another feminist, historical figure with Zelda, a biopic focused on Zelda Fitzgerald, which has Jennifer Lawrence attached in the title role and Ron Howard to direct.
CAA negotiated the acquisition and represents Black Bicycle and Ciarrocchi.