In an effort to spread awareness about PrEP, a drug that has been proven to be effective at preventing HIV, a few actors in West Hollywood took inspiration from Disney’s The Lion King musical.
Singer and Broadway star Todrick Hall, Mean Girls actor Daniel Franzese and YouTube sensation Kory DeSoto teamed up with the City of West Hollywood to produce “Hakuna Truvada!” a light and fun public service announcement to push the drug to the gay community.
Truvada is the name for PrEP, or Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis, and the once-a-day pill has a 90-95% effective rate of reducing the risk of HIV infection. The drug has become a leading tool in stopping the spread of the disease among high risk populations like LGBTQs and other men who of sex with men (MSMs). It’s avaialble to at-risk men in the United States, Canada, France and Israel.
Fan Free Clinic here in Richmond recently established a free PrEP program for those that qualify. Richmond continues to be a hotspot for the spread of HIV, the disease that causes AIDS, and was ranked in the top 25 cities for the illness in a 2013 study from the CDC.
In the tribute, “Hakuna Truvada” shows Todrick Hall in the opening scene writing in his diary about his boyfriend and he’s a little unsure if he’s telling the truth about his HIV status.
Franczese and DeSoto star as Timon and Pumbaa who happily sing a version of the Lion King-inspired “Hakuna Mataka”, but change the song up a little singing: “It means less worries for the rest of the gays! It’s our HIV, prevention key, Hakuna Truvada!”
Disney’s The Lion King musical is currently touring and recently made its way to Richmond. Check out our review of the wonderful show here.