Director David France and founder of Treatment Action Group (TAG) Peter Staley were presented with the Outstanding Documentary award by Dan Stevens (Downton Abbey) at the GLAAD Media Awards in New York on Saturday night for How to Survive a Plague. They were joined on stage by Sarah Rafsky (the daughter of Act Up media coordinator Robert Rafsky), executive producer Joy Tomchin and producer Howard Gertler.
Check out France and Staley accepting their award below.
The film is an unflinching look at how the activists behind groups like ACT UP and TAG formed and forced the medical establishment into action following its tragically stunted response to the HIV/AIDS crisis.
"How to Survive a Plague is a story about a personal history; it's what I saw, it's what many of you saw. It's a history that somehow got lost about how a microscopic virus exposed one of the worst chapters in American history and how political indifference and religious hostility allowed an infection that claimed at first 41 people to go on to claim over 70 million people and our community worked together to build a safety net to take care of people who were sick and respond to that epidemic and ultimately how a small group of people taught themselves science in a way to climb in the halls of research and work with the researchers to ultimately produce the drugs that made survival possible and ultimately saved the lives of eight million people. And that's an incredible story and an incredible legacy that we can all claim," France said.
Staley followed with an admonishment to remember that the fight against AIDS is not yet over. He finished, "We proved it once. We can do it again. We can end this silence and finish the job. We can all act up a little for the health of future generations."
For a complete list of winners, click here.
France and Staley joined hosts Lara Spencer, Josh Elliott and Sam Champion (Good Morning America); Jake Shears (Scissor Sisters); NFL players Brendon Ayanbadejo (Baltimore Ravens) and Chris Kluwe (Minnesota Vikings); Ellen Barkin (The New Normal); Debra Messing, Christian Borle, Andy Mientus, Krysta Rodriguez (Smash); Dan Stevens (Downton Abbey); Jenni "JWOWW" Farley, Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi (The Jersey Shore, Snooki & JWoww); Annie Clark, Cristine Prosperi (Degrassi); Straight But Not Narrow founder Avan Jogia; Milla Jovovich (Resident Evil); John Leguizamo (Ice Age, Moulin Rouge); Laverne Cox (Musical Chairs); GLAAD's Strategic Giving Officer Wilson Cruz (My So-Called Life); producing dream team Neil Meron and Craig Zadan and others at the GLAAD Media Awards in New York, which helps fund GLAAD's work to amplify stories from the LGBT community that build support for equality.
The 24th Annual GLAAD Media Awards series will continue in Los Angeles on April 20, 2013, and later in San Francisco on May 11, 2013. For a complete list of nominees, special guests and ticket information, click here.
The GLAAD Media Awards recognize and honor media for their fair, accurate and inclusive representations of the LGBT community and the issues that affect their lives.
The 24th Annual GLAAD Media Awards were presented nationally by Ketel One and Wells Fargo, and presented locally in New York by Delta Air Lines.