Pandemic: Case of the Killer Flu

(Presently in the YAP Films Library)

60 minutes • Documentary • Produced in association with: CBC, BBC, A&E and NRK • Production year: 1999

September 21, 1918, Roscoe Vaughn, a 21-year-old Private in the U.S. army falls ill on his way to the Western Front. He has a fever of 103, shaking, chills, and symptoms of pneumonia. He can’t breathe and begins to turn blue. 5 days later he is dead. Now, he may save us all.

The 1918 flu pandemic killed between 40 and 100 million people around the world – more than all the dead of World War I. It is the worst natural disaster in human history, and it disappeared as quickly as it came. Is the deadly flu strain ready to return? Do bodies frozen in the permafrost of the High Arctic hold the answers to this eighty-year-old mystery?

Written and Directed by: Elliott Halpern
Producers: Elliott Halpern, Simcha Jacobovici and Garfield Kennedy
Executive Producers: Jack Rabinovitch and Peter Williams

Award Highlights:

  • Bronze WorldMedal, New York Festivals
  • Best Science/Technology/Environment Documentary, Hot Docs