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"Love and Other Drugs," Based on Reidy's "Hard Sell," to Star Gyllenhaal and Hathaway; The Real Stars? Dopamine and Oxytocin
After Jamie Reidy's book, "Hard Sell: Evolution of a Viagra Salesman," was published, we heard that Hollywood had bought the rights to turn it into a film. The very readable, first-hand account of life in the pharmaceutical sales trenches would make a good movie, I thought, although the breezy narrative would need some romance and conflict in order to work on the big screen.
Well, Hollywood has taken care of all that. A movie based on the book, called Love and Other Drugs, will reportedly go into production, with Jake Gyllenhaal as the lead (good casting) and Anne Hathaway as the Romantic Solution (a patient with Parkinson's disease with whom the protagonist falls in love). This love story seems improbable for the charming but self-serving hero, so I hope the machinery won't turn him into a goody goody, or a "reborn" goody goody. There should be plenty of product placement opportunities for food companies here....pink cupcakes, pizza?
I don't think that Jamie Reidy was ever on an anti-pharma crusade, or he probably wouldn't have taken another drug sales job with Eli Lilly after leaving Pfizer (a job that was eliminated after "Hard Sell" came out). The film follows a trail blazed by Side Effects, directed by former drug sales rep Kathleen Slattery Moschkau, which starred Katherine Heigl as a drug sales rep. It promises to be interesting.
In the meantime, researchers at Stony Brook University in New York have reportedly come closer to a much deeper clinical understanding of "love and other drugs," and the neurotransmitters behind the feeling of being in love. Dopamine is said to be responsible for the euphoric feeling, but it is later joined by oxytocin, the key to attachment. For more, read on.