Yael Beals

Executive Producer – “Billion Dollar Molecule”

My passion is to tell stories through film that help people to understand and enjoy science. I have focused my efforts on creating visual media that explains what it takes to achieve academic and professional success in science. While working at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in the science media group, I participated in making a TV series called Essential Science for Teachers which helped high school science teachers learn and understand more about their field of specialization. We filmed a documentary called Factors Influencing College Science Success. We also created a Digital Video Science Library for educators. Our work was exhibited at the Harvard Museum of Natural History.
As an independent filmmaker I created several films for the CityLab program at the Boston University School of Medicine. CityLab provided underprivileged students the opportunity to start a career in biotechnology. I made the following films: The Science of Opportunity and SummerLab. My latest project is
I worked with Errol Morris, an innovative documentary director, in developing concepts for books and films. I have a master’s degree from Emerson College with a focus in media visual arts and film. I have a bachelor’s degree in Science in Visual Communications with a focus in photojournalism.

Mark Rennella, Executive Producer – “Billion Dollar Molecule”

I have a PhD in American Cultural and Intellectual History and taught American intellectual and cultural history for several years and then started a second career in business education in 2003. I understand how the power of ideas can radically shape and re-shape our businesses and the economy. The story of Vertex – if more widely known – should play a prominent role in this history.
My experience in business education includes co-authoring a book on leadership in the airline industry with the dean of Harvard Business School, Nitin Nohria. I’ve also written two business cases with Gary Pisano, one of which deals with creativity and drug discovery at Wyeth.
I will use my experience as a historian and case writer to ensure that the major themes of this movie – leadership and scientific creativity – will be appreciated and understood by a general audience.