Pharma gets its close-up in new Hollywood films

Pharma films are all the rage in Hollywood these days--and several more are on the horizon. After "Love and Other Drugs" turned Jake Gyllenhaal into a Viagra rep and "Contagion" made a vaccine researcher into a hero, we have the news from Reuters that a Johnson & Johnson ($JNJ) whistle-blower story has been sold to New Regency.

In an exclusive story, Reuters reports that the book "Blood Feud," written by journalist Kathleen Sharp, has been optioned by the production company. The book covers a J&J salesman-turned-whistle-blower who repped for the anemia drug Procrit until he was fired, allegedly for warning that the drug could be harmful.

Meanwhile, Steven Soderbergh, who directed "Contagion," has signed up Jude Law and Blake Lively for a film dubbed "The Side Effects." According to Empire Online, "The Eagle" star Channing Tatum is also close to joining the project, which puts Lively in the role of a woman who turns to pills to cope with the impending release of her husband from prison.

Finally, Liv Tyler is said to be part of another pharma-related project called "The Side Effect," at least for now. Empire Online says (in a story highlighted by Pharmalot) that Tyler will play a woman who signs up to spend several months in space for a pharma experiment. The plot thickens when she wakes up one day to find herself pregnant. It's the brainchild of horror specialist Ti West.

- see the Reuters news
- get the Empire Online story
- check out more from Empire Online