NEW YORK (Hollywood Reporter) – Mark Ruffalo and Ethan Hawke will play Boston thugs in the true-life crime drama “Real Men Cry.”
Hawke and Ruffalo’s respective characters, Paulie and Brian, are childhood friends forced to survive on the tough streets of South Boston through a life of petty thievery. They join a local gang of criminals, but Brian finds it hard to reconcile his work and friendship with Paulie and his relationship with his wife (Amanda Peet) and son.
First-time feature director Brian Goodman based Ruffalo’s character on his own experiences with a friend who is now serving 100 years in prison for armed robbery.
“I came from a broken home and was living in survival mode,” Goodman said. “I have three bullets in me, one in the back of my head.”
After decades of drug and alcohol abuse, Goodman went to prison for assaulting an in-law he says abused his relative. Beginning in the late ’90s, he began getting small roles in Boston films. It was then that he befriended Donnie Wahlberg at a high-stakes card game. The two collaborated on the screenplay with fellow Boston native and actor Paul T. Murray.
“I sat down with Mark and Ethan and told them, ‘You are two on a very short list of men who could’ve been in films 35 years ago, when men were men,”‘ Goodman said.
“Cry” will film on location in Boston beginning in November. It is set up at indie producer Yari Film Group.
Ruffalo is in theaters with “Reservation Road,” and Hawke with “Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead.” Peet returns to theaters on Friday with the John Cusack drama “Martian Child.”