Kate McKinnon to Play Elizabeth Holmes in The Dropout

Greed is Good for Hulu

Rumour has it that streaming service Hulu has issued a new series order titled The Dropout. The show centers around infamous tech wunderkind Elizabeth Holmes, played by SNL mainstay Kate McKinnon. Based on the ABC Radio and ABC News podcast, the name is a tongue-in-cheek allusion to Holmes quitting school to found Theranos:

“The title refers to the fact Holmes dropped out of Stanford to found Theranos, a company which invented the Edison machine, a revolutionary diagnostic tool that promised to give patients a cheap way to test their blood for 200 diseases right at their local drug store.” 

“The Only Thing Worse Than a Liar Is a Thief.”

Elizabeth Holmes in 2014 - Photo by Max Morse for TechCrunch - Kate McKinnon set to play Holmes in Hulu mini-series
Elizabeth Holmes in 2014
Photo by Max Morse for TechCrunch

Unfortunately, Holmes’ claims about the Edison machine were a complete fabrication. She went on to swindle millions from extremely high profile investors; most notably, Richard Branson. Holmes very quickly became one of the richest women in the world. In a recent article published by Variety, it was mentioned that:

“Holmes’ scam was so successful that Theranos was at one time valued at nine-billion dollars, making her one of the richest women in the world. She was indicted by a federal jury in 2018, …on nine counts of wire fraud and two counts of conspiracy to commit wire fraud.”

Hot on the heels of the HBO documentary The Inventor: Out for Blood in Silicon Valley, it would appear Hulu is looking to cash in on the growing demand for content on the disgraced former tech giant. With a rumored film version already in the works, starring Jennifer Lawrence, Holmes looks to soon become the woman that the world will love to hate. It will be interesting to see the approach Hulu takes with the show, as well as how Mckinnon will choose to portray Holmes.

Will this be just another true crime biopic mini-series? Will Hulu choose to go a more comedic or satiric route? Given the context, the latter seems unlikely. At this time Hulu has set no official release date for the show; when asked for comment, they declined. 

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