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Based on true events, Radium Girls follows teen sisters, Bessie and Jo Cavallo, who dream of Hollywood and Egyptian pyramids as they paint luminous watch dials at the American Radium factory in New Jersey. When Jo loses a tooth, Bessie’s world is turned upside down as a mystery slowly unravels. 

She discovers a corporate cover-up and, in a radical coming of age story, Bessie and the Radium Girls decide to take on American Radium. Based on historical events, the national sensation following the notorious case of the Radium Girls in 1928 ultimately led to significant and lasting impact in the area of workplace health and safety and the study of radioactivity. 

Science on Screen Virtual Panel Discussion: Monday, November 16 at 8pm

Livestreamed via YouTube

Moderated by Beth Gilligan, Coolidge Corner Theatre


Dr. Richard Clapp, environmental epidemiologist

Lydia Dean Pilcher, filmmaker, Radium Girls

Ginny Mohler, co-writer and filmmaker, Radium Girls

Science on Screen® is an initiative of the Coolidge Corner Theatre. With major support from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

  • Year
  • Runtime
    102 minutes
  • Language
  • Country
    United States
  • Director
    Lydia Dean Pilcher, Ginny Mohler
  • Screenwriter
    Ginny Mohler, Brittany Shaw
  • Cast
    Joey King, Abby Quinn, Cara Seymour