57 user 18 critic

And the Band Played On (1993)

PG-13 | | Drama | TV Movie 11 September 1993
The story of the discovery of the AIDS epidemic and the political infighting of the scientific community hampering the early fight with it.



(book), (teleplay)
3,248 ( 79)

Watch Now

From $9.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

Nominated for 2 Golden Globes. Another 11 wins & 21 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

What the Deaf Man Heard (TV Movie 1997)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

Arriving in a new town, a child pretends to be deaf-mute to protect himself - a ruse which works so well that for twenty years he is custodian to all the town's secrets.

Director: John Kent Harrison
Stars: Matthew Modine, Claire Bloom, Judith Ivey
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

The emergence and devastation of the AIDS epidemic is chronicled in the lives of several gay men living during the 1980s.

Director: Norman René
Stars: Stephen Caffrey, Patrick Cassidy, Brian Cousins
An Early Frost (TV Movie 1985)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

A young lawyer hasn't told his parents about his homosexuality. Now he must tell them--at a time when the diagnosis was still a death sentence--that he has AIDS.

Director: John Erman
Stars: Gena Rowlands, Ben Gazzara, Sylvia Sidney
The Normal Heart (TV Movie 2014)
Biography | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A gay activist attempts to raise HIV/AIDS awareness during the early 1980s.

Director: Ryan Murphy
Stars: Mark Ruffalo, Jonathan Groff, Frank De Julio
Twins (2010)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

On the eve of his wedding Daniel meets again with his true love-his identical twin brother Jan. For the last five years he's been running away from his feelings. Now, on his stag night he is being tested once more.

Director: Florian Gottschick
Stars: Stefan Schönenberg, Tobias Schönenberg, Natalie Krane
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A chronological look at films by, for, or about (or 'by, for, and about') homosexuals in the United States, from 1947 to 2005, from Kenneth Anger's 'Fireworks' to Ang Lee's 'Brokeback ... See full summary »

Directors: Lisa Ades, Lesli Klainberg
Stars: Tom Arnold, Randy Barbato, Dan Bucatinsky
Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A fictionalized account of what may have happened when John Lennon and Brian Epstein went on holiday together to Spain in 1963.

Director: Christopher Munch
Stars: David Angus, Ian Hart, Stephanie Pack
Documentary | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A documentary surveying the various Hollywood screen depictions of homosexuals and the attitudes behind them throughout the history of North American film.

Directors: Rob Epstein, Jeffrey Friedman
Stars: Lily Tomlin, Tony Curtis, Susie Bright
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Divorced working woman Alex and well-to-do Jewish family doctor Daniel Hirsh share not only the same answering service but also the favours of young Bob Elkin who bed-hops between them as ... See full summary »

Director: John Schlesinger
Stars: Peter Finch, Glenda Jackson, Murray Head
Biography | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.9/10 X  

Time Flies When You're Alive is a gripping one-man show. Paul Linke recounts, in no small detail the highs and lows of his marriage, specifically around his wife's losing struggle with ... See full summary »

Director: Roger Spottiswoode
Stars: Paul Linke
Dorian Blues (2004)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

High school senior Dorian begins a gay man's odyssey when he determines that he's gay and decides to come out. Chief among concerns is the reaction of his father, who has never liked him.

Director: Tennyson Bardwell
Stars: Michael McMillian, Lea Coco, Steve Fletcher
Biography | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Based on the life of the young Guy Burgess, who would become better known as one of the Cambridge Spies.

Director: Marek Kanievska
Stars: Rupert Everett, Colin Firth, Michael Jenn


Cast overview, first billed only:


This is the story of the first years of the AIDS epidemic in the United States and focuses on three key elements. Dr. Don Francis, an immunologist with experience in eradicating smallpox and containing the Ebola virus, joins the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to try and understand just what this disease is. They also have deal with bureaucracy and a government that doesn't seem to care. The gay community in San Francisco is divided on the nature of the disease but also what should be done about it. Finally, the film deals with the rivalry between Dr. Robert Gallo, the American virologist who previously discovered the first retrovirus and his French counterpart at the Pasteur Institute, Dr. Luc Montagnier, that led to disputed claims about who was first to identify the AIDS virus. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

aids | gay | disease | cdc | death | See All (69) »


A threat no one dared face. A word no one wanted to speak. A fight for many, fought by few.




PG-13 | See all certifications »




| |

Release Date:

11 September 1993 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

...und das Leben geht weiter  »

Filming Locations:

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The film cast includes two Oscar winners: Phil Collins and Anjelica Huston; and four Oscar nominees Alan Alda, Ian McKellen, Richard Jenkins and Lily Tomlin. See more »


The movie presents January 4, 1983 as the date when the term AIDS was created in a proposition in the CDC, in Atlanta. The real meeting where the term was developed was July 27, 1982, and the reunion took place in Washington. (Source: Time Magazine) See more »


Blood Bank executive: Is the CDC seriously suggesting that the blood industry spends $100M a year to use the test for the wrong disease because we have a handful of transfusion fatalities and eight dead hemophiliacs?
Dr. Don Francis: How many dead hemophiliacs do you need? How many people have to die to make it cost effecient for you people to do something about it? A hundred? A thousand? Give us a number so we won't annoy you again until the amount of money you begin spending on lawsuits make it more profitable for you to save ...
See more »


Features A Room with a View (1985) See more »


Play the Game
Written by Freddie Mercury
Performed by Queen
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

"It may seem a little hopeless." ... "That's because it is."
15 September 2007 | by (las vegas, nv) – See all my reviews

American doctors from the under-funded Center for Disease Control scramble to figure out the origin of--and the causes behind--the alarming rate of homosexual male deaths in the early 1980s; as a fatal strain of pneumonia and hepatitis B cases begin appearing, as Reagan-era Washington apparently vetoes the mysterious disease as non-newsworthy, and as the gay community (shown as not one radically adept at helping their own cause) label the early cases as products of the Gay Cancer, the CDC battles with the Blood Industry in coming up with an inexpensive way of filtering out contaminated blood. Adaptation of Randy Shilts' frightening, groundbreaking book was seemingly an impossible undertaking, yet HBO Films and co-producer Aaron Spelling manage to lay all Shilts' information out adroitly and adeptly, with some of the character interaction awkwardly interjected but with most of the principal players doing very well with technical roles. Alan Alda positively revels in the opportunity to play sniveling medical scientist Dr. Robert Gallo, who felt usurped when French scientists initially gained prestige for isolating the virus; as Dr. Mary Guinan, Glenne Headly does some of the best work of her career (while interviewing a sexually promiscuous airline steward, one of the earliest men to fall prey to the disease, Headly is remarkably natural and charming); and Saul Rubinek as Dr. Curran, who initiates the investigation and helps sort out all the jargon, is in masterful form. Some of the high-profile cameos aren't shaped for much satisfaction--they stick out as artifices--such as Richard Gere's bit as a stricken choreographer (it is commendable that Gere is here, yet his movie star aura looms larger than his part). The film isn't compact--it isn't a quick-fix wallow or a time-filler--it is a serious, frustrating, angry movie with no easy answers. And that's as it should be.

12 of 16 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Author was gay and died of AIDS jessx2001
Is this serious? edunn6185
HIV Positive Celebs jbk728
Photo Montage ??? gisele799
Omitted from the Film - don francis, blood banks and the gov't Before_Sunrise
Discredited? erichanthorne
Discuss And the Band Played On (1993) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page