That Certain Summer (1972)


The first US teleplay to deal sympathetically with homosexuality. Divorced San Francisco contractor Doug Salter is looking forward to a summer visit from his fourteen-year-old son Nick, who lives in Los Angeles with his mother Janet. The boy does not know that his father is gay and committed to Gary McClain, his life partner of several years.

Director: Lamont Johnson.
Writers: Richard Levinson, William Link.
Stars: Hal Holbrook, Martin Sheen, Joe Don Baker, Marlyn Mason, Scott Jacoby, Hope Lange, James McEachin, Clarke Gordon, Jan Shepard, Carolyn Bueno, Myron Natwick, Patti MacLeod.

1973 Golden Globes – Winner Best Movie made for TV.
1973 Director’s Guild of America Award – Winner Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Movies for Television (Lamont Johnson).

Hal Holbrook on working on That Certain Summer:
William Link on writing and producing That Certain Summer:



Many thanks to “leonnos” @avenidalibertad for sending me a copy of this movie.

How would you rate this movie?

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  1. Doctor Go
    December 23, 2018

    Thanks for sharing this TV movie!

    • Gil
      November 13, 2022

      I’ve been looking for this movie for years and years and years. I saw this flick in 1972 on the mo ie of the week.
      Thanks for loading this movie!
      Gil Loera11/13/2022

  2. December 25, 2018

    Thanks so much for finding this!

  3. Ken F
    April 29, 2019

    Thanks for posting this! I saw it when I was 10 and remember it vividly. Mostly a very positive look at homosexuality. Vito Russo’s book The Celluloid Closet points out that Holbrook’s line at the end about some people regarding being gay as a disease and that he’d have chosen otherwise if he could was to placate part of the audience who might think that. Other than that, a very normal look at gay life. Can’t wait to re-watch it.

  4. November 22, 2019

    Wow! I never thought I’d be able to see this. Thank you so much for sharing this film! <3

  5. January 3, 2020

    Simply a great film that stands the test of time. When I was at Riordan High School in San Francisco I saw them filming in the Japanese Tea Garden in Golden Gate Park back in July of 1972. Scott Jacoby won an Emmy Award as Best Supporting Actor for his role as the son. Hal Holbrook and Hope Lange were also nominated as was the film but unfortunately did not win. So many compromises were made when writing the script that it was a miracle it got on the air at the time. Frank Price an Executive at ABC was a real champion of the production and made sure it got on the air. Thank God.

  6. Hannah
    January 25, 2020

    Cannot thank you enough for posting this! I’ve been looking for this movie forever, and just gave up on ever seeing it. You’re very kind for sharing it, and even including a download link 🙂 I hope one day the company that owns the rights for this will give it a proper release or allow it to be available on a mainstream streaming service so everyone can watch it!

  7. Britt Overbaugh
    February 27, 2020

    WILLIAM LINK, who brought this film to the screen, explains its genesis and broadcast on one of several you tube clips…archive interview.

  8. Britt Overbaugh
    February 27, 2020

    ALSO….HAL HOLBROOK, and LAMONT JOHNSON (Director) discuss the film in their “archive interview” clips on You Tube.

  9. colin
    April 11, 2020

    entertaining and sensitively-done

  10. April 25, 2020

    THANK U so much for posting this, ive been looking for YEARS never thought i’d be able to watch so grateful i got the chance such an AMAZING film it’s so magnificent to see that their was good lgbt+ films way back in 1974 loved gary and doug so much

  11. May 12, 2020

    I was a sophomore in high school in Kentucky when i saw this movie on tv. I cried all night after seeing the movie because i finally understood that i too was “homosexual”. Im 62 now and I’ve never forgotten that night or the movie. Thank you.

  12. August 19, 2023

    Depending on when this film aired, I was either 12 or 13 back in 1972. I recall seeing trailers with cautionary disclaimers and really wanting to see it. Mom had seen them as well and said, “ you’re not watching that”. Until this afternoon, it’s been impossible to track this down, and I can’t thank you enough for finally helping me to see it. What a time capsule of the times! It provides some cultural context and back drop for my adolescent gay angst. (Of course, the much bigger contributor was fundamentalist Christianity and completely dishonest testimonies of ex gays on Christian TV). I hope this remains available as it can’t be helpful toward enlightenment and understanding of those who came later.

  13. Torin Doyle
    August 30, 2023

    A fine film! 4/5 stars. 🙂

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