60-minute, historic drama
It’s 1850 and Mary Ellen Pleasant, a former slave and shrewd entrepreneur, is desperate to make California a haven for free Blacks. Thwarted at every turn, by everyone from the local grocer to the Governor, she utilizes extortion, a team of prostitutes and some down-home southern cooking to push the young, gold-crazed state toward civil rights.
Based on actual events, we meet Mary Ellen in her heyday, living as a free woman in San Francisco, operating a brothel and boardinghouse, and helping escaped slaves create new identities and find work. She has wealth, political connections and a white lover who is well-positioned to help her execute her investments. But that doesn't mean life is easy. An African American woman with power and influence is seen as a threat to California's newly minted elite. And they'll do whatever it takes to stop her.
For more information or to read the pilot, contact producer Bernhard Goldmann at Goldmann Pictures