20th Anniversary of “In the Gloaming” and HIV Panel (highlights)

Hollywood, Health & Society, a program of the USC Annenberg Norman Lear Center, commemorated the 20th anniversary of “In the Gloaming” at the Ray Kurtzman Theater at CAA on March 30 with a screening of excerpts from the film, followed by a panel discussion on HIV and Hollywood.

In addition to Will Scheffer, the film’s writer, the featured guest speakers were Michele Kipke, co-director of the Southern California Clinical and Translational Science Institute (SC CTSI), who has been closely involved in research of the HIV/AIDS epidemic since its onset in the U.S; and Thomas Davis, a community coordinator for the Adolescent Trials Network at UCLA.

The hourlong movie, which originally aired on HBO, offered an intimate look at the effect on an upper-middle-class family when Danny, a young gay man with AIDS, returns home to die. Based on a 1993 short story by Alice Elliott Dark, the movie was written by Scheffer, the co-creator of “Big Love” and “Getting On” who was then a rising playwright in New York.

The film (nominated for five Emmys) was directed by the actor Christopher Reeve, who had been paralyzed in a 1995 horse-riding accident, and featured a strong cast led by Glenn Close. The evening included a series of clips showing HIV/AIDS in TV entertainment over a 20-year arc, starting with the movie “An Early Frost” and ending on ABC’s “How to Get Away With Murder.”