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Holy Flying Circus

Posted by Maximum Fun on 15th August 2011


Shortly after Monty Python released “Life of Brian” in 1979, John Cleese and Michael Palin went on BBC2’s “Friday Night, Saturday Morning” (a chat show with an opening sequence which suggests that it is ideal post-coital viewing) to defend their work in a debate against author Malcolm Muggeridge and Mervyn Stockwood, the then Bishop of Southwark.  The result was a now somewhat famous broadcast which has been excerpted frequently (as in the documentary footage above from “Monty Python: Almost the Truth (The Lawyer’s Cut)”), but only rarely presented in its entirety. 

Now, according to the Guardian, BBC4 is making a drama about Python’s creation of “Brian” and the troupe’s subsequent struggles to defend the film.  The show, “Holy Flying Circus”, which will air sometime this autumn, was written by Tony Roche (who also wrote for “The Thick of It”) and will focus much of its attention on this odd yet fascinating bit of television history.