Brian's Song is a 1971 ABC Movie of the Week that recounts the details of the life of Brian Piccolo, a football player stricken with terminal cancer after turning pro, told through his friendship with Chicago Bears running back teammate and Pro Football Hall of Famer Gale Sayers, who helps him in his difficult struggle.
Directed by Buzz Kulik. Written by William Blinn, based on the book I Am Third, written by Gale Sayers and Al Silverman.
== Gale Sayers ==
Uh, you uh, all know that we hand out a game ball to the outstanding player. Well, I'd like to change that. We just got word that Brian Piccolo is - that's he's sick, very sick. And, uh, it looks, uh, like he might never play football again, or, uh, a long time. And, I think we should dedicate ourselves to, uh, give our maximum effort to win this game and give the game ball to 'Pic'. We can all sign it. And take it up. Aw, sh—Oh, my God.
[accepting the George S. Halas award] I'd like to tell you about a guy I know, a friend of mine. His name is Brian Piccolo. And he has the heart of a giant, and that rare form of courage that allows him to kid himself and his opponent, cancer. He has a mental attitude that makes me proud to have a friend who spells out the world 'courage,' 24 hours a day, every day of his life. Now you honor me by giving me this award. But I say to you here now Brian Piccolo is the man who deserves the George S. Halas award. It is mine tonight... and Brian Piccolo's tomorrow. I love Brian Piccolo. And I'd like all of you to love him too. And so tonight, when you hit your knees, please ask God to love him.
== Brian Piccolo ==
So, Concannon calls this trap play, and it's just beautiful... 43 yards, wasn't it 43? Ah. So, Halas sees he's tired, and sends me in, so I go in, he comes out. Concannon then figures he's gonna get REALLY foxy... you know, Concannon is... So, he says, "Um, same play. VERY SAME PLAY." Now, a trap play is also called, a SUCKER play, because it makes the defense look REAL bad when it works. Now, defenses DO NOT like to look real bad, see... it makes 'em kinda surly... So, anyway, all the linemen go this way, and it's like I am lookin' at a team portrait of the Los Angeles Rams! "Hey, Deacon! Merlin! How's the family, Rosey?"
== Coach George Halas ==
Brian Piccolo died of cancer at the age of 26. He left a wife and three daughters. He also left a great many loving friends who miss and think of him often. But when they think of him, it's not how he died that they remember - but how he lived. How he did live!
== Other ==
Narrator: Ernest Hemingway once said "Every true story ends in death." Well, this is a true story.
== Dialogue ==
Brian Piccolo: I said thank you.
Gale Sayers: I know.
Brian Piccolo: Well, usually when someone says thank you you're supposed to say you're welcome or How's Your mother?
Gale Sayers: How's your mother? ?
Brian Piccolo: She's doin' fine, thanks for asking.Assistant coach: Piccolo, you bone-headed spaghetti eater, that was Fake Draw Screen Right. What the hell do you do on Fake Draw Screen Right?
Brian Piccolo: Well, on uh, Fake Draw Screen Right I uh, pick up the linebacker if he's comin, 'less of course it's Butkus, then I simply notify the quarterback to send for a preacher.Brian Piccolo: I think I know what's wrong with me.
Gale Sayers: Yeah, what's that?
Brian Piccolo: I'm pregnant.
== Cast ==
James Caan - Brian Piccolo
Billy Dee Williams - Gale Sayers
Jack Warden - Coach George Halas
Shelley Fabares - Joy Piccolo
Judy Pace - Linda Sayers
Bernie Casey - J.C. Caroline
David Huddleston - Ed McCaskey
Ron Feinberg - Doug Atkins
Jack Concannon - Himself
Abe Gibron - Himself
Ed O'Bradovich - Himself
Dick Butkus - Himself
== External links ==
Brian's Song quotes at the Internet Movie Database
Brian's Song at Rotten Tomatoes