Belfast Telegraph

John Cleese: My memory's in tact

John Cleese doesn't think it will be him who forgets his lines on the Monty Python tour, instead naming Terry Gilliam and Terry Jones as the likely culprits.

John, along with Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Terry Jones and Michael Palin will be performing as Monty Python for the first time in over 30 years at a series of sell-out performances in London next month.

With a combined age of 361 it's no wonder the group are unsure that all sketches will be remembered, but the legendary comedy actors promise to give their fans a night to remember.

"Terry G would be, if he had any lines," John laughed to Time Out London magazine when asked who would mess up "or Jones".

"I hope it's not me, that's all. The great thing is, if you're funny you'll just say 'I forgot my f**king lines!'" added Eric.

Monty Python exploded on to the scene in the late '60s as a six-piece with original member Graham Chapman, who died in 1989, and quickly amassed a cult following.

Comedy stars such as Seth MacFarlane, Ricky Gervais and South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone have all cited Monty Python as their early influences, but John says the show would never get near TV screens in today's world.

"Definitely not. In those days the departmental head were trusting their producers. One of the things that makes me saddest about the way the country has gone since I was young is the BBC. I look back at what was a magnificent institution. Then, for some economic reason that wonderful institution was thinned down," John sighed.

Terry, who's now a celebrated Hollywood director, agrees with the sentiment.

"Everything now has to be pre-digested for the nation by frightened executives who don't want to lose their jobs. For creative people it's very, very destructive," he said.

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