The Book of Ruth: Ruth Wilson & Matt Bomer to star in AIDS drama film
According to Deadline, Golden Globe winners Ruth Wilson (The Affair, His Dark Materials) and Matt Bomer (The Normal Heart) have officially signed on for the leading roles in Tony nominee Michael Arden’s upcoming feature directorial debut titled The Book of Ruth, centering on the life of Ruth Coker Burks, who is an AIDS awareness advocate and a caregiver for AIDS patients during the 1980s.
“It’s a great honor and privilege to tell this important story about the responsibility one human has to another, especially in a time of crisis,” Arden said in a statement. “As a gay man, I feel that Ruth’s story of empathy in the face of great prejudice and adversary is one so needed in our modern time.”
He continued, “It is vital for us to remember that we lost an entire generation to the AIDS epidemic and that so many people, including Ruth, sacrificed their own comfort, station, and livelihood to help those in need during this plague,”
In The Book of Ruth film, Set in 1983, Burks (Wilson) lives a busy life, devoted to her work, her 6-year-old daughter Jessica, and her faith. When a handsome new neighbor (Bomer) turns out to be a gay New Yorker who has fled the city and returned home after the death of his partner to AIDS, she decides to educate herself on the epidemic sweeping the country.
Ruth Coker Burks is a devout Christian divorcée and single mother from Arkansas. During the late 1980s when the AIDS epidemic had gotten worse in the country, Burks used her salary as a real estate agent to sustain the care for AIDs sufferers who needed help her. After over 30 years, Burks is still continuing her work as an AIDS and HIV advocate in order to raise awareness and educate people against the prejudices and stigma around the disease.
The Book of Ruth will be directed by Michael Ardern from a screenplay co-written by Rebecca Pollock and Kas Graham. It will be executive produced by Cora Palfrey and Sara Lebutsch with Scott LaStaiti, Dominic Tighe and Thomas Daley serving as producers.
Production is expected to begin sometime this year.
(Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images for Women in Film and TV & Jemal Countess/FilmMagic via Getty Images)