HBO Announces ‘The Normal Heart’ With Julia Roberts & Mark Ruffalo January 9, 2013 HBO, News HBO has announced the upcoming premiere of the Ryan Murphy (Glee, American Horror Story) directed drama, The Normal Heart. Julia Roberts (Pretty Woman) and Mark Ruffalo (The Kids Are Alright) will star in the new project that follows the rise of HIV-AIDS in 1980’s in New York City. Michael Lombardo, the president of HBO’s Programming, has made the official announcement. “We are so proud to be involved with this monumental project. Ryan has assembled an extraordinary cast to bring Larry Kramer’s landmark theatrical achievement to the screen for the first time, and we couldn’t be more thrilled to bring this important film to HBO.” In ‘The Normal Heart’ Roberts is slated to play Dr. Emma Brookner while Ruffalo will portray the character Ned Weeks. Matt Bomer (White Collar) will play Ruffalo’s love interest. The eye opening story will be executive produced by Murphy, Jason Blum (The Reader), Dede Gardner (The Tree of Life) and Dante Di Loreto (Glee). The HBO presentation will air sometime in 2014 with production scheduled to begin later this year. The five time Tony nominated story comes from writer Larry Kramer and is an adaption from his play of the same name that first debuted back in New York in 1985.