Mark Ruffalo had previously told MTV he would be play Ned Weeks in the film and that Murphy would be involved. Murphy said at the premiere, "I think it's an important story and I think Mark Ruffalo is just beyond brilliant so I'm very excited to be directing him." He said the film would start shooting next June from a screenplay by Kramer.
Murphy was also asked about rumors that he might direct the film version of the hit musical Wicked. He said he had not made a pitch for his vision of the film but that "I’m full of admiration for everyone connected with the show."
"I love that show," Murphy added. "I've used the music of that show on 'Glee.' I think that show is about empowerment, which is what 'Glee' and 'Eat, Pray, Love' are about, so it would be an honor to be asked to [direct the adaptation]."
The Normal Heart debuted at The Public Theater with Brad Davis in the central role of Ned, based semi-autobiographically on playwright Kramer. The play focuses on "the terrifying early years of the AIDS epidemic in New York and the criminal silence of official America in dealing with it," according to previous press notes.