Helen Hunt Will Play a Sexual Surrogate in The Surrogate

HOLLYWOOD, CA - MARCH 30: Actress Helen Hunt attends the premiere of TriStar Pictures' "Soul Surfer" at the ArcLight Cinerama Dome on March 30, 2011 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images) Photo: Frederick M. Brown/2011 Getty Images

Helen Hunt will play the title role in the upcoming film The Surrogate, which stars John Hawkes as Mark O'Brien, a polio survivor who is paralyzed from the neck down and seeks out a sexual surrogate for his first sexual contact. Moon Bloodgood and Rhea Perlman have also joined the cast, though not as surrogates, which is probably good for everyone. That does not sound promising. But! The film is based on a true story, and O'Brien, a journalist and poet, wrote about that experience in a 1990 article that's incredibly moving and beautiful; it's a striking meditation on personhood and sexuality. O'Brien died in 1999, but he'll appear in the film in archival footage. [Variety]