Focus has also acquired Latin American rights to the film, which Craig Borten and Melissa Wallack wrote. Their script follows Ron Woodroof (McConaughey), a man diagnosed with HIV at the height of AIDS hysteria. With the health industry still unsure how to treat those with the disease, Woodroof turns to self-medication and alternative treatments to delay his supposed death sentence.
He amasses a stockpile of treatments and forms an organization whereby other patients can buy the products from him.
McConaughey lost significant weight to play the role, which many see as an opportunity for him to claim some awards in the winter. He took home an Independent Spirit Award for his performance in "Magic Mike" and earned strong reviews for several other movies last year, such as "Bernie" and "Killer Joe."
“Matthew McConaughey is an actor at the top of his game, and he incarnates Ron Woodroof by showing how his self-interest was galvanized into something much more," Focus CEO James Schamus and president Andrew Karpen said in a statement. "Audiences will want to take this journey with him, Jared Leto, and Jennifer Garner, as guided by their dynamic director Jean-Marc Vallée."
Schamus and Karpen negotiated the deal with CAA, which packaged and arranged financing for the film.