Murphy was able to bring Kramer's 1985 HIV-AIDS crisis play to the screen when it aired on HBO six years ago this week with a star-studded cast that included Julia Roberts, Mark Ruffalo, Matt Bomer, Jim Parsons and Taylor Kitsch. "I first met Larry Kramer in 2012. The film rights to his groundbreaking play The Normal Heart had become available, and I wanted them," Murphy wrote on Instagram. "We had a wonderful first meeting, he was kind and excited about my casting ideas — Mark Ruffalo and Julia Roberts (who would both go on to do the HBO film with us). From there we got into negotiations, and he said he wanted one million dollars for the rights. 'Larry!' I said, 'that’s a lot of money for a low budget film!' He paused and said 'it’s what I’m worth.' I paid it. And I’m so glad I did. Larry knew the value of his work, his life, all gay people’s lives — and his fundamental stubborn belief in equality for all made him perhaps the single greatest and most important gay activist of all time." ALSO: Normal Heart Golden Globe winner Matt Bomer calls Kramer "one of the most courageous people I have ever known."