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The new trailer for HBO's The Normal Heart, an adaptation by Larry Kramer of his groundbreaking 1985 play, begins on a happy note, at a beach party. That doesn't last long. The fun suddenly stops when a character played by Jonathan Groff coughs and drops to his knees, a moment symbolizing the AIDS crisis entering the lives of these characters. 

The trailer then predominantly focuses on Mark Ruffalo's Ned Weeks, a character that's a stand in for Kramer himself, an activist whose tactics are both necessary and at times alienating. He works with Emma Brookner—a role that recently won Ellen Barkin a Tony award, here played by Julia Roberts—a wheelchair-bound doctor. "Where's this big mouth I hear you've got?" Brookner asks Weeks. He replies: "Is big mouth a symptom?" To which she says: "No, it's a cure." 

The movie—which also stars the likes of Matt Bomer and Taylor Kitsch, the latter of whom we're excited to see break out of his post-Friday Night Lights funk—is directed by Ryan Murphy and premieres May 25. 

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.