Brian's Song (1971)

TV Movie  |  G  |   |  Biography, Drama, Sport  |  30 November 1971 (USA)
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Based on the real-life relationship between teammates Brian Piccolo and Gale Sayers and the bond established when Piccolo discovers that he is dying.



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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 10 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
J.C. Caroline
Judy Pace ...
Abe Gibron ...
Jack Concannon ...
Ed O'Bradovich ...
Ed O'Bradovich
The Chicago Bears Players ...
The Chicago Bears Coaches ...
The Chicago Bears Staff ...
Harold 'Happy' Hairston ...
Veteran Player #1 (as Happy Hairston)
Ron Feinberg ...
Veteran Player #2 (Doug Atkins)


Gale Sayers joins the Chicago Bears and is befriended by Brian Piccolo, an over-achieving running back. Although they compete for the same spot on the team, and despite the fact that Sayers is black and Piccolo white, they become roommates on the road and very close friends, especially when Sayers is injured and Piccolo helps his recovery. Later, they and their wives must both deal with the harsh reality of Piccolo's cancer. Written by Jerry Milani <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


An inspiring true story of friendship and courage.


Biography | Drama | Sport


G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

30 November 1971 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Freunde bis in den Tod  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Released theatrically after its successful TV broadcast on the ABC television network. See more »


When Gale Sayers suffers his knee injury, it's during his fourth year on the team, which was the 1968 NFL season. George Halas had retired as the Bears Head Coach after the 1967 season, although he was still serving as the Bears owner, and functionally as Bears general manager. See more »


Narrator: Ernest Hemingway once said "Every true story ends in death." Well, this is a true story.
See more »


Referenced in The Cinema Snob: Satan's School for Girls (2010) See more »

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User Reviews

The Most Gut-Wrenching......
4 May 2001 | by (Bayonne, NJ) – See all my reviews

......emotional and tear-jerking movie ever made! Brian's Song will have you weeping and an emotional wreck regardless of how many times you see it! Simply put, the greatest TV movie ever made and some of the finest performances ever put on film. "Nuff said!

5 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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