BBC Revisits “Life Of Brian” Fuss

The BBC plans to revisit the controversy surrounding the Monty Python film “Life of Brian” in a comedy-drama special to be aired next fall. Holy Flying Circus will revisit the making of “Life of Brian” and the controversy surrounding it, especially the TV chat show debate that pitted Python members John Cleese and Michael Palin against broadcaster Malcolm Muggeridge and an Anglican bishop. Muggeridge and the Right Reverend Mervyn Stockwood argued that the 1979 film was blasphemous and an attack on the Christian faith. The original comedy, by the crew of BBC’s surreal “Monty Python’s Flying Circus,” was banned in several countries and sparked protests by church leaders who claimed it mocked Christ.

Life of Brian follows a man named Brian Cohen, who was born in the stable next to Jesus and is mistaken for the Messiah when he joins a liberation movement to fight the Roman occupation. The film was a huge box office success and still resonates with Python fans.

Alas, the Python members will not be reuniting for the new 90-minute TV special. Instead, actors will play the young incarnations of Cleese, Palin and Life of Brian director Terry Jones.

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