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Band of Brothers is a 2001 American war drama miniseries based on historian Stephen E. Ambrose‘s 1992 non-fiction book of the same name. It was created by Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks, who also served as executive producers, and who had collaborated on the 1998 World War II film Saving Private Ryan. Episodes first aired on HBO, starting on September 9, 2001. The series won Emmy and Golden Globe awards in 2001 for best miniseries.
The series dramatizes the history of “Easy” Company, 2nd Battalion, 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, of the 101st Airborne Division, from jump training in the United States through its participation in major actions in Europe, up until Japan’s capitulation and the end of World War II. The events are based on Ambrose’s research and recorded interviews with Easy Company veterans. The series took some literary license, adapting history for dramatic effect and series structure. The characters portrayed are based on members of Easy Company. Excerpts from interviews with some of the survivors are used as preludes to the episodes, but they are not identified by name until the end of the finale.
The title of the book and series comes from the St Crispin’s Day Speech in William Shakespeare‘s play Henry V, delivered by King Henry before the Battle of Agincourt. Ambrose quotes a passage from the speech on his book’s first page; this passage is spoken by Carwood Lipton in the series finale.