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Sally Hemings: An American Scandal (2000)

TV Movie  |  Unrated  |   |  Biography, Drama, History  |  13 February 2000 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 365 users  
Reviews: 18 user | 1 critic

Epic television miniseries exploring the complicated relationship of Thomas Jefferson and slave Sally Hemings, who conducted a 38 year love affair, spanning an ocean, ultimately producing children, grandchildren, and lots of controversy.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
James Hemings
James Callender
Thomas Mann Randolph (as Zeljko Ivanek)
Klea Scott ...
Critta Hemings
Jessica Townsend ...
Maria 'Polly' Jefferson
Henry Jackson (as Larry Gilliard Jr.)
Harriet Hemings
Peter Bradbury ...
Samuel Carr
Chris Stafford ...
Peter Carr
Lady Maria Cosway


The story of the extraordinary, controversial thirty-eight-year relationship between Thomas Jefferson and his slave mistress, Sally Hemings. The teenage Sally begins her unexpected relationship with widower Thomas Jefferson in Paris where he is serving as the U.S. Ambassador to France. After escorting Jefferson's younger daughter on a trans-Atlantic journey to join him in Paris, Sally is soon exposed to a world quite unlike the one in which she has lived as an illiterate slave in Monticello. While Sally serves as a nanny of sorts, Jefferson provides her with an education, fine clothes and opportunities to experience cultural events. She and her brother, James, who works as Jefferson's chef and was also educated by him, delight in the fact that they are free in France-and are treated with respect. It is under these circumstances that Sally and Jefferson become acquainted with one another and begin an affair that will ultimately lead to scandal. Written by Echo Bridge Home Entertainment

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Bound by Slavery. Freed by Love. See more »


Unrated | See all certifications »





Release Date:

13 February 2000 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Monticello  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (DVD)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Based on actual people and true events, although fictionalized with additional characters, events, and embellishments. See more »


[first lines]
Sally Hemings: I was born a slave, but destined to scandal.
See more »

Crazy Credits

ON SCREEN: The story was rebuffed despite the oral histories of Hemings/Jefferson descendants. See more »

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User Reviews

What a mini-series!
18 February 2000 | by (Atlanta, GA) – See all my reviews

What a performance for Sam Neill. I thought that his portrayal of Jefferson was delightful. They could not have picked a better actor. I truly loved this mini-series. I think it is one of the best that I have seen in a while.

8 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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