During a recent television appearance, out actor Olly Alexander, the star of the AIDS drama It's a Sin, became emotional talking about a record number of people getting tested for HIV in Britain.

Russell T. Davies' look at three friends as they confront the AIDS epidemic from its start in the 1980s is currently playing on Channel 4. HBO Max will release the entire 5-episode series on February 18.

(Related: Russell T. Davies says he omitted HIV/AIDS from Queer as Folk on purpose.)

The UK charity Terrence Higgins Trust (THT) reported that last week, National HIV Testing Week, saw a record number of people getting tested for HIV.

THT's Richard Angell credited the show's popularity for the huge spike in testing.

“The power of TV to change lives. It's A Sin is Channel 4's most binged watched new series and honours the heroes of the past – stopping our history being forgotten,” Angell tweeted.

“It's also led to more people than ever taking acting and getting tested during National HIV Testing Week. What a legacy. LA!,” he added, referring to a line used by the show's characters.

Appearing with the show's cast from separate locations on BBC Breakfast, Alexander, also the lead singer of Years & Years, said that he was moved by the response to the show.

“I'm trying not to cry,” he said. “I think it's just amazing to see a real-time response to the show from the audience who is watching. I'm just really moved by it, honestly.”

“It's so rare that telly has that effect,” co-star Omari Douglas said.