HBO lands ‘Doomsday Machine’ Facebook Limited Series Starring Claire Foy As Sheryl Sandberg

HBO lands ‘Doomsday Machine’ Facebook Limited Series Starring Claire Foy As Sheryl Sandberg

HBO has bought the rights for Doomsday Machine, a limited series about Facebook that will star Claire Foy as embattled tech giant chief operating officer, Sheryl Sandberg. The premium cable network’s acquisition comes after multiple outlets placed bids on the project, Deadline is reporting.

Doomsday Machine was written by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright-novelist, Ayad Akhtar, whose screen projects include co-scribing the film The War Within. The upcoming drama is based on Sheera Frenkel and Cecilia Kang’s 2021 bestselling book, An Ugly Truth: Inside Facebook’s Battle for Domination, and their New York Times reporting. The series is also inspired by the reporting of the New Yorker’s Andrew Marantz.

Doomsday Machine will chronicle the political and social minefields Facebook has navigated on its relentless quest for growth. The project will also show how Sandberg and the social media platform’s co-founder-CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, are shaping the way that billions of people around the world communicate and consume information.

The drama is expected to cover the period beginning with the wave of disinformation that was reported on Facebook surrounding the 2016 presidential election.

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Doomsday Machine will also chronicle the internal struggles that led to the recent revelations that were reported in the Wall Street Journal and New York Times.

The revelations include the disclosure of XCHECK, a program that shielded VIP users, including former U.

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S. president Donald Trump, from the platform’s normal rules and regulations; news that the company was aware of the mental health risks posed by Instagram to younger users, despite their public downplaying of the issue; and an effort by Zuckerberg to use the News Feed to push out positive stories about Facebook to help shape the public’s opinion about the social media platform.

Following those revelations, data engineer-turned-whistleblower, Frances Haugen gave Senate testimony last fall that urged lawmakers to impose tougher regulations on the social media giant. Then, earlier this month, Facebook’s parent company lost a quarter of its value in a disappointing earnings report and forecast.

Besides starring in Doomsday Machine, the Emmy Award-wining Foy is also set to executive produce the series, alongside Akhtar. The project will also be co-produced by HBO, David Levine and Doug Wald for Anonymous Content and Paul Lee and Josh Stern for wiip.

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Andrew Marantz of the New Yorker will also serve as a consultant on the project.

Check out more of Karen Benardello’s articles.

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