Rock Hudson, a closeted heartthrob of Hollywood’s Golden Age who became a public face of AIDS in the 1980s, is getting a big-screen biopic.
Universal Pictures has optioned Mark Griffin’s All That Heaven Allows: A Biography of Rock Hudson with plans to adapt the book into a film directed by Greg Berlanti, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
A leading man in the ’50s and ’60s, Hudson starred in films such as Magnificent Obsession, All That Heaven Allows, and Pillow Talk. Oscar-nominated for his role in Giant, he found success in television during the ’70s and ’80s, appearing on shows like McMillan & Wife and Dynasty.
Hudson, who was diagnosed with HIV in 1984 and denied rumors he had AIDS for a year, died in 1985 from AIDS-related complications at the age of 59. Nancy Reagan famously denied his pleas for help gaining access to experimental HIV treatment.
Berlanti also will produce the Hudson biopic along with Berlanti Productions president Sarah Schechter and Marsh Productions and Entertainment’s Sherry Marsh. They are currently seeking a screenwriter.
“When Sherry Marsh brought this book to us, we jumped at the chance to be involved,” said Berlanti and Schechter in a statement. “Rock Hudson’s life and legacy is a vital piece of both LGBTQ history and Hollywood history and has to be given the big-screen treatment it deserves.”
Berlanti, who is married to former soccer pro Robbie Rogers, is a prolific TV producer and creative mind behind shows such as Dawson’s Creek, Riverdale, and Supergirl.
He directed the 2000 gay-themed film Broken Hearts Club and most recently helmed the YA adaptation Love, Simon, the first major studio rom-com with a gay teen at its center.