Four decades have passed since Monty Python first farted in the general direction of moviegoers with Monty Python and the Holy Grail, and now the pioneering comedy absurdists are planning on commemorating the occasion at the Tribeca Film Festival. All five surviving members of the troupe will be in attendance to say “Ni!” at a special screening of the movie at New York City’s Beacon Theatre on April 24th.
The festival, which takes place April 15th – 26th, will also premiere a new Python documentary, Monty Python: The Meaning of Live, which will offer a backstage look at the group’s 2014 reunion. Directed by Roger Graef and James Rogan, the film promises an unprecedented look at how the shows came together and insight into the individual members’ personalities and intra-group relationship. The screening is scheduled for April 25th.
As part of their Python celebrations, TFF will also screen the troupe’s 1979 religious satire Monty Python’s Life of Brian on the 25th and silly look at all stages of life, Monty Python’s the Meaning of Life (whose “Always Look on the Bright Side of Life” remains a top funeral song), on the 26th. A Q&A with some of Python’s members will follow each screening.
“The Pythons are looking forward very much to the Tribeca Film Festival and the chance to meet anyone who can remember why we made Monty Python and The Holy Grail,” group member Michael Palin said in a statement. “All we know is that it was a documentary about coconuts that rather lost its way. If anyone at Tribeca can explain why we made it and didn’t call it Braveheart, then our visit to New York will not have been wasted.”
“It’s amazing how lack of money saved us from mediocrity,” Terry Gilliam, the group’s animator and Holy Grail co-director, said. “We couldn’t afford real horses.” Added Eric Idle: “I often had the feeling the movie might make a good Broadway musical.”
Tickets for the Holy Grail screening will go on sale March 23rd on the festival’s website.