deleted monty python animation

Monty Python and the Holy Grail is one of those things that is actually as good as you remember. No amount of obnoxious over-quoting by comedy nerds trying out their best (i.e., terrible) British accent can ruin the best jokes. An amusing but safely mainstream Broadway musical adaptation cannot diminish its transgressive delights. 40 years later, it’s still one of the best comedies ever made, from one of the most inspired comedy groups to ever walk this planet.

So when long-lost animation from the film is unearthed for the new Blu-ray and DVD release, everyone with good taste has reason to celebrate! And when original Python troupe member/animator/token American Terry Gilliam is called in to provide commentary, everyone with the best taste has additional reason to break out the party favors.

Watch the deleted Monty Python animation, and Gilliam’s commentary, after the jump.

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time bandits tv series

Terry Gilliam is a cinematic genius, but he’s also a cinematic genius who wronged a sorcerer in a past life or something. His battles with movie studios are the stuff of legend. The movies that have literally fallen apart around him are too many to count. And then the internet went and falsely reported his death. If Gilliam’s own movies didn’t present a self-awareness about the absurdity of existence and cruel unfairness of life, it would be easy to fear for his sanity.

Could his salvation come via the small screen? We already knew he had a deal in place with Amazon, but now Gilliam has revealed that he’s working on a TV version of his 1981 comedic fantasy Time Bandits. Maybe things are finally looking up for the most cursed of filmmakers.

Check out Gilliam’s own comment on the Time Bandits TV series after the jump.

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Don Quixote delayed

The story of Terry Gilliam‘s death was thankfully completely wrong, but his new/old film project, The Man Who Killed Don Quixote, is having a harder time. The film has been an on-again, off-again proposition for years, originally going before cameras in 2000 with Johnny Depp and Jean Rochefort in the lead roles before a set of disasters, including physical problems for Rochefort, forced the film to be canceled. We could write a book about the movie’s problems, but there’s already a movie about it, Lost in La Mancha.

The latest incarnation of The Man Who Killed Don Quixote has been planned to star Jack O’Connell and John Hurt. That’s now in doubt, however, as Hurt’s recent cancer diagnosis means Don Quixote is delayed again. Read More »

Gilliamesque

Terry Gilliam isn’t dead, despite a brief and alarming report to the contrary that stunned Twitter and the movie industry for a few minutes Tuesday afternoon. We’re thrilled that Gilliam is still around, and that he is taking this odd spotlight moment to apologize for his own death.

In perfectly Gilliamesque fashion, the writer/director also shared the trailer for his forthcoming memoir, a “pre-posthumous” book he is calling, of course, Gilliamesque. Read More »

monty python and the holy grail blu-ray

Monty Python and the Holy Grail has been making us laugh, and prompting us to quote its absurd dialogue, for forty years. The 1975 release will enjoy a new anniversary blu-ray edition in October. One bit of packaging for the disc is meant to evoke one of the most ridiculous concepts in the movie — and that’s saying a lot when discussing this film.

The new Monty Python and the Holy Grail blu-ray will feature a working catapult — a tiny one, these people aren’t monsters, and the shipping for an actual war machine would be outrageous — that will fling appropriately-sized animal toys about your room.

Even better, there’s a video featuring the Monty Python crew (Terry Jones, Michael Palin, John Cleese, and Terry Gilliam, who is thankfully very much alive) playing with the modestly-sized weapon. The glee with which Michael Palin puts the catapult to work might be the best thing I’ve seen today.

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Don Quixote at Amazon

Not long ago details leaked out indicating that Terry Gilliam was among the filmmakers who had signed a deal with Amazon to create movies and/or TV for the online retail giant’s increasingly ambitious streaming service. (Which now includes theatrical distribution, at least in some cases.) I thought it might all be a fever dream, or one of those Gilliam-esque flights of fancy that is grounded all too soon.

But the deal is real! Terry Gilliam has that sweet, sweet Amazon money, and he’s going to use some of it to finally — finally! — put The Man Who Killed Don Quixote out into the world. Read More »

Amazon Jim Jarmusch

Amazon has made deals with two filmmakers whose work helped define rebellion against studio control and the American independent film movement. And today, Deadline wins the no-prize for burying the lede. In a wide-ranging piece about the film market landscape, specifically oriented around Cannes deals, the site mentions that Amazon has signed deals with Jim Jarmusch and Terry Gilliam, bringing the two filmmakers to the same label that already boasted Spike Lee and Jean-Pierre Jeunet. Read More »

Man Who Killed Don Quixote casting

Update: O’Connell has now officially been cast in Gilliam’s film. Our original article follows, and is updated with a new synopsis below.

Jack O’Connell may well be the next big guy to watch. After his stint on Skins, he showed up in 300: Rise of an Empire and ’71, and received rave notes for his work in Starred Up. Holding the lead role in Angelina Jolie’s Unbroken means that half the families in the US are going to know his face after that film opens at Christmas. And now he might be the man for Terry GilliamThe Man Who Killed Don Quixote. He would play, according to the most recent draft of the script, a guy who is connected to a Don Quixote movie which has had a fairly undesirable effect on some audiences. Read More »

Rian Johnson Terry Gilliam Star Wars

Update from Editor Peter Sciretta: The first part of the podcast was published yesterday, which is what we originally reported on. The second part of the conversation is now online, and I have updated the bottom of this story with additional information including Episode VIII shooting schedule, the process of writing the script and shooting location. The original post from September 18th 2014 follows, followed by an BOLDED marked update with the additional information.

Rian Johnson talked a bit about the creative freedom he has been given working on Star Wars Episode VIII (and IX?) while talking to fellow filmmaker Terry Gilliam on the TalkHouse podcast. Find out what Johnson said about writing the next installment of the Star Wars franchise, what it’s like to be working in someone else’s world, the obligation to bring Yoda and puppets back to the series, and an idea to have Gilliam have a cameo which might reveal a possible character in the upcoming eighth film. All this and more can be read and heard in the Rian Johnson Terry Gilliam Star Wars discussion, after the jump.

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Fisher King commentary

Tragic as the reason was, there’s been a muted pleasure in seeing people go back to The Fisher King in the wake of Robin Williams‘ death. The 1991 movie is among the least flashy of Terry Gilliam‘s films, and one that in the past decade or so seems to have taken a back seat to consideration of higher-profile films like Brazil and Twelve Monkeys.

The Fisher King is a great movie, and a strange one. But it grounds Gilliam’s quirky and excessive tendencies in a handful of really wonderful characters who are brought to life by great performances. Robin Williams, in particular, is at the top of his game as a man whose life has turned completely upside-down in the wake of his wife’s death. The film can be relentlessly brutal, but it is also beautifully funny, and full of life. At it’s heart, this is a musical, and it’s a pleasure to see Gilliam and the cast play.

There are a lot of treasures hidden on now out of print Criterion laserdiscs, and here’s one of them. This feature commentary from Terry Gilliam isn’t in print any longer, as it only appeared on the laserdisc release of the movie. But you can listen to the Fisher King commentary below. Read More »