The Bloody Truth, a documentary that travels into hospitals and Central African forests with an international team of researchers to examine the origins of HIV, is being released in advance of December 1, World AIDS Day.
The 52-minute special, which will air on the Smithsonian Channel in the U.S. under the title Rise of the Killer Virus, sees scientists trying to salvage a medical archive containing thousands of Colonial era tissue samples. HIV-positive tissue samples are uncovered in the Congo, leading to the theory that HIV was first transmitted from chimpanzees to human in southeast Cameroon around 1908, decades before the virus was first discovered.
“Understanding the origins of HIV could provide crucial clues to help in the battle against it,” says PBS International’s VP Tom Koch in a statement. “The Bloody Truth is an incredible science documentary.”
The film is produced by Docdays Productions with Yuzu Productions and Congoo, in coproduction with Smithsonian Channel, ZDF/ARTE, CCTV 10, RTBF, BRT and S4C.
So far, The Bloody Truth has been pre-sold to Portugal’s TVI, Norway’s NRK, Sweden’s UR and MBN in the Middle East.