Ryan Murphy Casts 'Glee' Star Jonathan Groff in 'The Normal Heart'

Ryan Murphy Casts 'Glee' Star Jonathan Groff in 'The Normal Heart'Glee” actor Jonathan Groff is the latest to hop on board with the upcoming Ryan Murphy HBO film “The Normal Heart.”

The film will be based on the autobiographical play by Larry Kramer, which deals with the rise of the HIV-AIDS crisis in New York City in the early 1980’s.

Groff will play Craig, an early victim of the disease and the lover of Bruce Niles, a “closeted banker who becomes a big-time AIDS activist.”

Niles will be played by “Friday Night Lights” alum Taylor Kitsch (stage versions have featured David Allen Brooks and Lee Pace).

"We are so proud to be involved with this monumental project,” announced HBO programming president Michael Lombardo.

“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.”

Also appearing in the film:

-Mark Ruffalo as Ned Weeks, a gay Jewish-American writer who presents the story to the audience as he founds a prominent HIV advocacy group.

-Broadway actor Joe Mantello as Mickey Marcus, a man becomes an important part of the Gay Men’s Health Crisis.

-Julia Roberts as wheelchair-bound Dr. Emma Brookner, who tries to unlock the mystery behind the disease killing gay men in New York.

-Matt Bomer as Felix Turner, a writer for the New York Times and the closeted love interest for Ned Weeks.

-"Big Bang Theory" actor Jim Parsons as Tommy Boatwright, a hospital administrator and "Southern b*tch."

“The Normal Heart” will debut on the network in 2014.

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