Armistead Maupin’s Tales of the City books have been an iconic series for LGBTQ audiences and straight audiences alike for over forty years now. And after several years the characters are coming to life again on the small screen in a new Netflix limited series, which just released its latest trailer. Returning from the original PBS mini-series from 1993 are stars Olympia Dukakis and Laura Linney, along with newcomer to the series Ellen Page as Linney’s estranged daughter. You can check out the trailer down below:
The Tales of the City series of novels have a long and important history. They originally began as serialized stories in The San Francisco Chronicle, about the diverse population of San Francisco. All of these intertwining stories came from the midst of the sexual liberation days of the late ’70s. Its frank portrayal of LGBTQ characters as just as important and valid as those of the straight characters drew in readers of all sorts, and Maupin later collected the serialized chapters as novels. During a time when media was all but ignoring the AIDS crisis, the characters in Tales tackled it head-on, as it was happening to them. This made the series even more important in retrospect.
The adaptations have been an even more wild history. Tales of the City was first adapted as a very successful PBS mini-series in 1993, which starred Olympia Dukakis and a very young Laura Linney in starring roles. But right wing protests at the publicly funded PBS showing positive portrayals of LGBTQ life caused them to pull the plug on any further installments. Five years later, Showtime continued the story with two more mini-series, which followed the later books. The new Netflix series will be set in modern day, and will be presumably be based on the most recent books in the series. In addition, Netflix has already debuted The Untold Tales of Armistead Maupin documentary, which chronicles the real life story of the author of the original novels.
The new Tales of the City premieres on Netflix June 7.