Mark Ruffalo and Matt Bomer Lovers in HBO Films' The Normal Heart

Larry Kramer's Tony Award-winning play The Normal Heart has received the go-ahead to be turned into an HBO film. The Ryan Murphy-directed adaptation will begin filming in New York City later this year for a 2014 debut on HBO. Larry Kramer himself will write the screenplay adaptation. The film will star Academy Award nominee Mark Ruffalo, Matt Bomer, and Academy Award winner Julie Roberts.

The Normal Heart, according to press notes, tells the story of the onset of the HIV-AIDS crisis in New York City in the early 1980s, taking an unflinching look at the nation’s sexual politics as gay activists and their allies in the medical community fought to expose the truth about the burgeoning epidemic to a city in denial.

Julia Roberts will play paraplegic physician Emma Brookner who treats some of the earliest victims of the epidemic. Mark Ruffalo will play Ned Weeks, who witnesses the disease and its effects first-hand in his gay community and starts asking questions and Matt Bomer will play Felix Turner, a reporter who becomes Ned's lover.

"We are so proud to be involved with this monumental project,” HBO's Michael Lombardo said in a statement. “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.”

The Normal Heart debuted at New York's Public Theatre in 1985 and was revived on Broadway in 2011. The 2011 Broadway revival was nominated for five Tony awards and won three, including Best Revival, Best Featured actor and Best Featured Actress for The New Normal's Ellen Barkin.