White Collar star Matt Bomer has been chosen to play Felix Turner in the upcoming HBO movie The Normal Heart. The movie is based on Larry Kramer’s autobiographical play that was on production in Off-Broadway and The Public Theater in the 1980’s. It was again revived in Off-Broadway and Los Angeles in 2004, and in Broadway in 2011.
The story revolves around the HIV-AIDS crisis in New York City from 1981 to 1984.
When producer Ryan Murphy bought the The Normal Heart‘s rights, he asked Bomer to lose 40 pounds for the role, and Bomer gladly accepted the offer without batting an eyelash.
In the movie, Matt Bomer plays the role of Felix Turner, a closet gay reporter from The New York Times who falls deeply in love with openly gay activist Ned Weeks, who is played by Mark Ruffalo.
During filming Bomer, who is openly gay, left his husband and three children to focus on preparing for his role. He has never had a role close to Felix Turner, and he is fortunate that Murphy saw something in him.
36-year-old Matt Bomer had an interview with Vulture and talked about the movie and his role. Bomer said that he and his husband had to prepare their children for the role, even before he started losing weight. When they told their three boys about the role, they said, “Yeah! Go!” Bomer said that it was not difficult for their children to accept the change. His eldest son just said, “When are you going to get to eat pancakes with me again?”
Matt Bomer was so focused on his character that he left his family and lived on his own. On Top Mag reports that Bomer lived alone in order to feel what was going through Felix’s mind. “I felt it was best for me to be away at that point in time until I sort of finished the project and could start eating again.”
Bomer was also asked about one of his lines: “Men learn not to love.” He said that when he was a child, he was taught that being gay was innately wrong. However, Matt also said that he was living in a loving environment and knew how important love was. “Felix is somebody who is living a very compartmentalized life when we see him, but he’s also very open to intimacy,” Bomer said about his character.
The Normal Heart also stars Julia Roberts, Jim Parsons, Taylor Kitsch, Jonathan Groff, and Joe Montello.