23 user 9 critic

Tales of the City 

1:22 | Trailer
The stories of several colorful characters living in San Francisco. Based on the book by Armistead Maupin (Is A Man I Dreamt Up).
4,618 ( 167)




Nominated for 2 Primetime Emmys. Another 3 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »



Learn more

More Like This 

More Tales of the City (TV Mini-Series 1998)
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

In this sequel to the controversial PBS mini-series, Mona Ramsey is on a cross-country trip that takes her to a brothel which may hold a secret about her past. Michael "Mouse" Tolliver and ... See full summary »

Stars: Olympia Dukakis, Laura Linney, Colin Ferguson
Further Tales of the City (TV Mini-Series 2001)
Drama | Mystery | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

This third installment to "Tales of the City" finds Mary Ann Singleton struggling to advance in her new career as a TV personality, while Michael Tolliver is playing the field after his ... See full summary »

Stars: Olympia Dukakis, Paul Hopkins, Laura Linney
Tales of the City (TV Series 2019)

A middle-aged Mary Ann returns to San Francisco and reunites with the eccentric friends she left behind.

Stars: Ellen Page, Laura Linney, Charlie Barnett
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

THE UNTOLD TALES OF ARMISTEAD MAUPIN celebrates one of the world's most beloved storytellers, following his evolution from a conservative son of the Old South into a gay rights pioneer whose novels inspired millions to re-claim their lives.

Director: Jennifer M. Kroot
Stars: Armistead Maupin, Frank Biafore, Kate Bornstein
Jeffrey (1995)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Jeffrey, a young gay man in New York, decides that sex is too much and decides to become celibate. He immediately meets the man of his dreams and must decide whether or not love is worth ... See full summary »

Director: Christopher Ashley
Stars: Steven Weber, Michael T. Weiss, Peter Jacobson
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

The emergence and devastation of the AIDS epidemic is chronicled in the lives of several gay men living during the 1980s.

Director: Norman René
Stars: Stephen Caffrey, Patrick Cassidy, Brian Cousins
An Early Frost (TV Movie 1985)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

A young lawyer hasn't told his parents about his homosexuality. Now he must tell them--at a time when the diagnosis was still a death sentence--that he has AIDS.

Director: John Erman
Stars: Gena Rowlands, Ben Gazzara, Sylvia Sidney
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Tony Award-winning actor and playwright Harvey Fierstein re-creates his role as the unsinkable Arnold Beckoff in this film adaptation of the smash Broadway play TORCH SONG TRILOGY. A very ... See full summary »

Director: Paul Bogart
Stars: Anne Bancroft, Matthew Broderick, Harvey Fierstein
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Gregory invites seven friends to spend the summer at his large, secluded 19th-century home in upstate New York. The seven are: Bobby, Gregory's "significant other," who is blind but who ... See full summary »

Director: Joe Mantello
Stars: Jason Alexander, Stephen Spinella, Stephen Bogardus


Complete series cast summary:
Olympia Dukakis ...  Anna Madrigal 6 episodes, 1993
Donald Moffat ...  Edgar Halcyon 6 episodes, 1993
Chloe Webb ...  Mona Ramsey 6 episodes, 1993
Laura Linney ...  Mary Ann Singleton 6 episodes, 1993
Marcus D'Amico ...  Michael Tolliver 6 episodes, 1993
Billy Campbell ...  Jon Fielding 6 episodes, 1993
Thomas Gibson ...  Beauchamp Day 6 episodes, 1993
Paul Gross ...  Brian Hawkins 6 episodes, 1993
Barbara Garrick ...  DeDe Halcyon Day 6 episodes, 1993
Nina Foch ...  Frannie Halcyon 5 episodes, 1993
Country Joe McDonald ...  Joaquin 4 episodes, 1993
Parker Posey ...  Connie Bradshaw 4 episodes, 1993
Syd Straw Syd Straw ...  Laurel 4 episodes, 1993
Kevin Sessums Kevin Sessums ...  Peter Cipriani 4 episodes, 1993
Stanley DeSantis ...  Norman Neal Williams / ... 4 episodes, 1993
Cynda Williams ...  D'orothea Wilson 4 episodes, 1993
Paul Dooley ...  Herb Tolliver 3 episodes, 1993
Meagen Fay ...  Binky Gruen 3 episodes, 1993
Michael Jeter ...  Carson Callas 3 episodes, 1993
Belita Moreno ...  Alice Tolliver 3 episodes, 1993
Ian McKellen ...  Archibald Anson Gidde 3 episodes, 1993
Edie Adams ...  Ruby Miller 2 episodes, 1993
Robert Downey Sr. ...  Edgar's Doctor 2 episodes, 1993
Stephanie Faracy ...  Candi Moretti 2 episodes, 1993
Lou Liberatore ...  Chuck 2 episodes, 1993
Mary Kay Place ...  Prue Giroux 2 episodes, 1993
Meadow Sisto Meadow Sisto ...  Cheryl Moretti 2 episodes, 1993
McLean Stevenson ...  Booter Manigault 2 episodes, 1993
Paul Bartel ...  Charles Hillary Lord 2 episodes, 1993
David Brisbin ...  Lemon Candles 2 episodes, 1993
Vicky Preston Brown Vicky Preston Brown ...  Opera Singer 2 episodes, 1993
Lance Loud ...  William Deveraux Hill III 2 episodes, 1993
Lou Cutell ...  Herb Siegel 2 episodes, 1993
Bob Mackie ...  Richard Evan Hampton 2 episodes, 1993
Darin Heames ...  Skate Guy 2 episodes, 1993
Carolyn Lowery Carolyn Lowery ...  Hillary 2 episodes, 1993
Janeane Garofalo ...  Coppola Woman 2 episodes, 1993
Michael McFall ...  Michael's Friend 2 episodes, 1993
Gender Gender ...  Drag Queen 2 episodes, 1993
Philip Moon ...  Lionel Wong 2 episodes, 1993
Mother Love ...  Motherly Waitress 2 episodes, 1993
Tom Alan Robbins ...  Supermarket Creep 2 episodes, 1993
Sam Moore ...  Preacher 2 episodes, 1993
Amy Ryder Amy Ryder ...  Frieda 2 episodes, 1993
Don Novello ...  Father Sarducci 2 episodes, 1993
Hank Stratton ...  Robert 2 episodes, 1993
Howard Platt ...  Mr. Wilson 2 episodes, 1993
Kelvin Han Yee ...  Taxi Driver 2 episodes, 1993
Rod Steiger ...  Bookshop Owner 2 episodes, 1993


Tales of the City chronicles the adventures of Mary Ann Singleton, a young secretary from Cleveland who takes a vacation to San Francisco and decides to stay. Set in 1976, before the days of AIDS and crack cocaine, the story depicts the city at the height of its boisterous gay, drug and disco cultures through the eyes of the innocent heroine. Written by Ernest W. Adams <eadams@ea.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Mystery | Romance


12 | See all certifications »






Release Date:

24 June 1996 (Netherlands) See more »

Also Known As:

Armistead Maupin's Tales of the City See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


(6 parts) | (DVD)

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Heather Graham, Ashley Judd, Cynthia Nixon, and Maria Portillo were all considered for the role of Mary Ann. See more »


When Beauchamp and Mary Ann pull up in front of Barbary Lane after their weekend away, the crew is reflected in the side of Beauchamp's car. See more »


[first lines]
Mary Ann's Mother: Hellooo?
Mary Ann Singleton: Mom, It's me.
Mary Ann's Mother: What's the matter did you miss your plane?
Mary Ann Singleton: No. I didn't
Mary Ann's Mother: You know darling we were just talking about you...
Mary Ann Singleton: Would you call Mr. Lassiter and say I won't be in on Monday?
See more »


Referenced in Kabluey (2007) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Transcendent Impression of a Time and a People
14 August 2008 | by jzappaSee all my reviews

Tales of the City is a film about which one has to impose oneself into a different mindset in order to write. This adaptation of Armistead Maupin's classic novel adopts a lampoon of chronicling story yarns, taking place in a progressive neighborhood in San Francisco where the least accepted felt in the time in which the film takes place was a place wherein they could live freely amongst their own, and the otherwise accepted were the ones who are subject to adjustment. At the same time it involves elements that are larger than life, its structure creates an atmosphere that is so close to life that it is larger than film.

It starts as the sumptuously sexy Laura Linney plays a naïve girl from the Midwest seeking a change in her life, impulsively to San Francisco, soon finding herself living in a neighborhood where things are out of control only because they are the natural way of the world unlike the perception of a reticent, sheltered American woman. Her life knots with her various neighbors and an incidental mass of quaint, intriguing, odd, bizarre, perfectly normal characters. It's an upturned impression of San Francisco in the 1970's, exploring what the rest of the world saw as "alternative lifestyles" and "underground culture," and what they saw of themselves. This includes a host of wonderfully entertaining performances, especially by the endlessly charming Parker Posey.

For anyone willing open their mind to the exploration of gays, casual drug users, free thinkers, different sorts of mysterious, nonconformist people, and the repressed, Tales of the City is a striking portrait with a picturesque environment, and the comings and goings in the lives of the multitude of characters strike a chord with us that love is as unpredictable as everything else, and that there always very well may be fathoms of new discovery and progression in our existence.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 23 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Comedy Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular comedy titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial

Recently Viewed

Super Dragonball Heroes | Tell Me a Story - Temporada 1 Capitulo 9 Descargar | IMDb: 6 HD Backstabbing for Beginners