Tough guys for Yari are 'Real Men'


Mark Ruffalo, Ethan Hawke and Amanda Peet will star in actor-turned-director Brian Goodman's autobiographical crime drama "Real Men Cry" for Yari Film Group.

Hawke and Ruffalo will play childhood friends Paulie and Brian, respectively, who are 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 (Peet) and son.

First-time feature director 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," he 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.

"Real Men" will film on location in Boston beginning in November. YFG CEO Bob Yari and Marc Frydman are producing with Rod Lurie, who helmed YFG's "Resurrecting the Champ" and is directing his script of "Nothing but the Truth" for the company.

Goodman's project hit the fast track when he brought it to friends Frydman and Lurie, partners in Battleplan Prods. He has directed two shorts and appeared in such films as "Munich" and Lurie's "The Last Castle."

YFG production chief Brad Jenkel will be oversee the project. David Glasser, president of the company's sales arm, Syndicate Films, will handle international sales at this week's AFM. Christa Zofcin negotiated the actors' deals on behalf of YFG.

"Everyone who's read the script for 'Real Men Cry' has been blown away by its authenticity and drama," Yari said.

Ruffalo next appears in "Blindness," "Margaret" and "The Brothers Bloom." Hawke appears in "Tonight at Noon" and "Daybreakers." Peet next appears in "Martian Child."

Ruffalo is repped by WMA, Robert Stein Management and attorney Keith Klevan. Hawke is repped by CAA, 3 Arts Entertainment and attorney George Sheanshang. Peet is repped by Gersh, Management 360 and attorney Gretchen Rush. Goodman is repped by APA.