Mark Ruffalo Plans to Star in Film of The Normal Heart; "Glee" Co-Creator Murphy Also Involved
By Thomas Peter
Stage and screen actor Mark Ruffalo will reportedly play Ned Weeks in an upcoming film adaptation of Larry Kramer's AIDS drama The Normal Heart.
Ruffalo told MTV News he "just signed on tentatively with Ryan Murphy to do" the project. The exact nature of "Glee" co-creator Murphy's involvement in the project was unclear, but Ruffalo said Kramer had written the screenplay.
The central role of Ned is based semi-autobiographically on playwright Kramer and his experiences. Ruffalo said of the film, "It's basically a story of when the AIDS outbreak happened in New York. It wasn't really taken seriously, I think specifically because it was 'the gay cancer,' they called it. I think it's a really interesting time in America. I think to see someone who really does change the world by his commitment and he's even totally by himself at times, there's still a real power in that. I love that it's a people-powered movement that actually changed the way our government looked at this epidemic."
Details on other casting and when the project would begin filming remain undetermined.
Brad Davis starred in the original production of The Normal Heart at The Public Theater, in which he played the central role of Ned, based semi-autobiographically on playwright Kramer. The Normal Heart 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 press notes for recent story reading of the drama.
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