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Hilary Swank Will Have Lou Gehrig's Disease In 'You're Not You'

by Benjamin Wright
September 27, 2012 5:29 PM
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After a whirlwind decade for Hilary Swank, which included winning Oscars for lead roles in both “Boys Don’t Cry” and “Million Dollar Baby,” things have slowed down recently for the actress – with only a couple films like 2010’s “Conviction” and a bit role in “New Years Eve” standing out recently. But Swank seems to be making her way back to the screen in a big way, with a Phillip Noyce-helmed HBO TV movie entitled “Mary & Martha” in the pipeline, a part alongside Meryl Streep in Tommy Lee Jones' "The Homesman," and now she’s lining up yet another feature.

Nights in Rodanthe” filmmaker George C. Wolfe has come aboard the Swank film “You’re Not You,” which follows the relationship that develops between an ill woman (Swank) suffering from ALS (aka Lou Gehrig's Disease) and her young caregiver. The film is an adaptation of Michelle Wildgen’s first novel, and currently the production is looking to cast the role of the 23-year old caregiver – most likely giving a pretty plum position alongside one of Hollywood’s most beloved actresses to whoever nabs the gig.

We can’t speak much for Wolfe’s feature career, but he did nab a few Tonys for his contribution to the excellent “Angels in America: Millenium Approaches” stage play a few years, so perhaps he has a shot at making good after the treacle-filled mess that was “Nights in Rodanthe.” Although on paper, this has as much potential to be as sappy as that film, and having Shana Feste ("Country Strong") and Jordan Roberts ("A Dolphin's Tale") tackle the script certainly doesn't help that impression. As for Swank, we’re always up for a good performance from the actress, as long as it’s as far away from “Amelia” as possible. Consider us cautiously optimistic on this one. [Variety]

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  • Terrie Mulligan | October 11, 2012 5:58 PMReply

    I lost my husband to ALS May 23, 2012. I have seen two other movies related to ALS, "Tuesday's with Morrie", which was very acurate re the illness. The other one I was not happy with at all. The lady whose portrayed the ALS patient appeared more like a victim of a stroke then ALS. I am sure Hilary Swank will do an outstanding job portraying the true aspects of living with ALS. It is a terrible, sad, debilitating illness of which there is currently no treatment or cure. Thank you, Hilary, for helping us to bring more awareness of this horrible disease. The caregiver goes thru a miriad of emotions as well. LIVING with ALS involves everyone around you. Best wishes....Terrie

  • Susan | October 2, 2012 4:02 PMReply

    Ellen Page (Juno) would make an amazing Bec in YOU'RE NOT YOU!

  • Gladys May | October 2, 2012 1:16 PMReply

    I, too, would like to know when this movie will be in the theaters.....I lost a good friend (a young lady in her 50's) to ALS; and I currently have a very good friend who's son is "living" with this condition....Let's all pray for a cause and cure....

  • CAROL | October 1, 2012 12:52 PMReply

    When is this movie going to air? My husband was diagnosed in July 2012 with bulbar ALS and I want for him to watch this movie.

  • Tammy | October 1, 2012 11:15 AMReply

    Well, I hope they get her character's disease right!!! I have personally been with a person suffering from ALS and it is NOT a fun thing!! I lost my father-n-law to this terrible disease and it is not fun to watch the person you love die right in front of you!!!! I really hope this director and Hillary really do their research and not belittle the people who are suffering from this or degrade the family members and others who take care of them!!!

  • Terrie Mulligan | October 11, 2012 6:08 PM

    Tammy, I totally agree! If they are going to make a movie about a PALS (person with ALS), then it HAS to be accurate! Unless you have lived it like we have, it is impossible to really understand the every day things that are so extremely difficult for the PALS AND the caregiver. I watched my husband die a slow and painful death from this horrid disease. The repeated trips to the hospital, the tube feedings, the trach, the vent, back and forth to the ER...the days run in to each other and generally the caregiver does not get a reprieve unless someone is wiling to step up and help. Once they are on a vent at home, there are very few who are able to help out. Hospice helps, but they are there only once a day for a short time. I pray daily for a cure/treatment. If the FDA would get off their ass and allow PALS to receive stem cell therapy without delay, it could save many, many lives. I hope, like you do, that this movie tells the REAL story. Terrie

  • O | September 28, 2012 4:59 AMReply

    Yeah, what happened to The Dallas Buyers Club? Damn!

  • Jesse | September 28, 2012 10:17 AM

    Supposedly it's shooting this october. Matthew McConaughey has been on a diet preparing for his part. I'm not sure Swank is involved anymore though.

  • d | September 27, 2012 9:28 PMReply

    The Dallas Buyer's Club?

  • Stevce | September 27, 2012 7:04 PMReply

    "Things have slowed down..." You guys are being too nice. Swank hasn't had a decent role in years and her last leading feature I believe was straight to DVD.

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