Julia Roberts to star in Ryan Murphy-directed 'The Normal Heart' for HBO

Ryan Murphy has lined up his next gig: He’ll direct Julia Roberts and Mark Ruffalo in the HBO Films drama The Normal Heart, which will bow in 2014. Larry Kramer will adapt his play of the same name for the pay network.

Production will begin in New York City later this year. Heart tells the story of the onset of the HIV-AIDS crisis in New York City in the early 1980s. Roberts will play Dr. Emma Brookner, the paraplegic physician who treats several of the earliest victims, while Ruffalo will portray Ned Weeks, a man who witnesses first-hand the mysterious disease that claims the lives of many. Matt Bomer (White Collar) will play a reporter who becomes Ned’s lover.

Kramer’s play debuted at New York’s Public Theatre in 1985 and was revived in Los Angeles, London and off-Broadway. The 2011 Broadway revival earned Tonys for Best Revival, Best Featured Actor and Best Featured Actress.

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