'Lars' duo reteams for Universal's 'Dallas' drama

“Lars and the Real Girl” star Ryan Gosling and director Craig Gillespie will reteam on “The Dallas Buyers Club,” a drama for Universal Pictures and Strike Entertainment.

David Bushell (“Sling Blade”) will produce with Marc Abraham, whose Strike partner Eric Newman will be exec producer.

Gillespie’s set, and Gosling’s in negotiations. Chase Palmer is doing a rewrite.

“Dallas Buyers Club” is the true story of Ron Woodroof, a tough Texas electrician who was diagnosed with AIDS in 1986 and given six months to live. Frustrated with the lack of available medical options and unwilling to accept a death sentence, Woodroof found a lifeline using alternative drugs and created a lucrative smuggling business that made those drugs available to AIDS patients. Woodroof died in 1992.

The project was originally set up at U in 2002 by Bushell and scribes Craig Borten and Melissa Wallach as a star vehicle for Brad Pitt and director Marc Forster. Subsequent drafts were penned by Guillermo Arriaga and Stephen Belber. Universal-based Strike came aboard recently, as it did on the long-gestating U adaptation of Robert Ludlum’s “The Sigma Protocol,” now a priority project with “Iron Man” scribes Art Marcum and Matt Holloway.

“Ron was this hard-drinking, carousing outlaw who got ticked off when told to go home and die,” Bushell said. “This is about one man’s enduring spirit to live and the effect his actions had on others, even if his actions didn’t start out entirely as altruistic.” ‘Lars and the Real Girl’ showed Craig’s ability to take offbeat, almost dangerous characters and make you want to bring them home for dinner, and Ryan stirs the deepest emotions with every performance.”

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