Michael Palin

  • 09 June 2004

Date of birth

5th May, 1943







Unused 'Monty Python' Sketches Found In Michael Palin's Archives

By Ed Biggs in Movies / TV / Theatre on 01 August 2018

Monty Python Michael Palin

More than 50 notebooks containing unused script ideas for 'The Holy Grail' film were unearthed last year.

Unseen sketches from the legendary Monty Python comedy team have been unearthed in Michael Palin’s archives.

The iconic comedy group, consisting of Palin, John Cleese, Eric Idle, Terry Jones, Terry Gilliam and the late Graham Chapman, produced their last movie 35 years ago, but now, boxes of unused material and sketch ideas have been uncovered, according to a report by The Times.

The material was donated by Palin to the British Library in 2017, and has now been revealed to contain discarded script ideas for the team’s much-loved 1975 film Monty Python and the Holy Grail, including one for an ‘Amorous Pink Knight’.

Continue reading: Unused 'Monty Python' Sketches Found In Michael Palin's Archives

The Death Of Stalin Review

Very Good

Fans of the film In the Loop and the TV series Veep will definitely not want to miss this raucously hilarious political satire from the same creator, Armando Iannucci. This time he has gone back in history to 1953, giving his snappy dialogue to the Russians jostling for control after the Soviet leader's sudden demise. The setting makes it a lot darker than Iannucci's previous work, but it's packed with unforgettable one-liners, visual gags and pointed observations on politics today.

In the wake of Stalin's death, his successors aren't sure whether they should continue with his campaign of terror against Russian citizens. Dopey deputy Malenkov (Jeffrey Tambor) wants to maintain the status quo, while more progressive Krushchev (Steve Buscemi) is looking for change. Their main rival is Beria (Simon Russell Beale), a thug who likes young girls. Then the enthusiastic General Zhukov (Jason Isaacs) charges in, deciding that they need to push Beria out and go in another direction. Meanwhile, Stalin's spoiled children (Rupert Friend and Andrea Riseborough) are determined that they should have a say in any new government, but everyone else knows that their days are numbered.

Continue reading: The Death Of Stalin Review

The Death Of Stalin Trailer

It's 1953 and our story takes place in Russia - then known as the Soviet Union - a nation terrorised by their communist leader Joseph Stalin (Adrian McLoughlin). But this is not a story about the inhumane acts of oppression and cruelty in his regime that resulted in the death of millions, it's about the events that occurred both immediately prior and following his shocking death from an apparent stroke at the age of 74.

Of course, this movie is as loosely based on the real events as it possibly could be - but it's certainly how we'd want to imagine events transpiring. There becomes an intense power struggle between several members of the Council of Ministers including Nikita Khrushchev (Steve Buscemi) - who would later go on to be the First Secretary of the Communist Party - Georgy Malenkov (Jeffrey Tambor), Lavrentiy Beria (Simon Russell Beale), Vyacheslav Molotov (Michael Palin), Lazar Kaganovich (Dermot Crowley), Anastas Mikoyan (Paul Whitehouse) and Nicolai Bulganin (Paul Chahidi).

Meanwhile, Marshal Georgy Zhukov (Jason Isaacs) is throwing a spanner in the works - not being the best of friends with Malenkov - and of course Joseph Stalin's renegade son Vasily (Rupert Friend) needs to be kept a close eye on. But nothing compares the chaos that they face from the public when they find out that their 'great' leader is dead.

Continue: The Death Of Stalin Trailer

Terry Gilliam and Michael Palin seen at the 'The Beatles: Eight Days a Week' World Premiere held at Leicester Square, London, United Kingdom - Thursday 15th September 2016

Stephen Fry Is Leaving ‘QI’, Replaced By Sandi Toksvig

By Elinor Cosgrave in Movies / TV / Theatre on 14 October 2015

Stephen Fry Alan Davies Dara Ó Briain Michael Palin

Stephen Fry is stepping down as the host of ‘QI’.

Stephen Fry is leaving QI. The 58-year-old actor and comedian is stepping down as the host of the popular BBC show as of next year. Fry has described the job as the “best in television” but simply feels it is time for him to move on.

Image caption Stephen Fry arriving at Chiltern Firehouse in London, July 2015.

Read More: Stephen Fry Draws Complaints For Swearing At BAFTAs.

Continue reading: Stephen Fry Is Leaving ‘QI’, Replaced By Sandi Toksvig

Michael Palin - Michael Palin arrives for Man Booker Prize literary director Ion Trewin's memorial service at St Martin-in-the-Fields Church, London at Man Booker Prize - London, United Kingdom - Wednesday 30th September 2015

Absolutely Anything Review


Simon Pegg continues his rollercoaster career, alternating between superior blockbuster franchises (Mission: Impossible and Star Trek) and awkward British romantic-comedies (Hector and the Search for Happiness). And this might just be his most disastrous move yet. Despite a promising cast, which includes a reunion of the surviving Monty Python members, this madcap sci-fi comedy never finds its tone, veering wildly from nutty slapstick to sentimental silliness. It's hard to remember laughing even once while watching it.

The story kicks off when an American space probe launched in 1972 is intercepted by the Intergalactic Council (voiced by the Pythons). Their investigation into Earth consists of watching YouTube videos, so of course they decide to destroy the planet. But first, they'll give one earthling a chance to save the world: they randomly choose North London schoolteacher Neil (Simon Pegg) and give him superpowers that allow him to do absolutely anything. After a few mishaps, he tries to use his abilities to improve his life, making his his dog Dennis speak (in the voice of Robin Williams) and appearing irresistible to his neighbour Catherine (Kate Beckinsale). Even though she already likes him. But Neil only has 10 days to do the right thing with his powers, or Earth is doomed.

Yes, this is essentially the same plot as Bruce Almighty, but the film never quite settles on an approach. It's produced in the style of an over-wacky child's movie, but the humour is eerily adult-oriented, so it's difficult to see who would enjoy it. The main plot is never remotely coherent, meandering through the story without any sense of direction. There are also a few corny sideroads to pad out the slim running time, including Neil's work colleague (Sanjeev Baskar) becoming an object of religious devotion, while Catherine's American military one-night-stand (Rob Riggle) becomes an obsessive stalker. Neither of these strands goes anywhere funny. Nor do extended cameos by Eddie Izzard (as a gruff headmaster) or Joanna Lumley (as a snooty TV presenter).

Continue reading: Absolutely Anything Review

Absolutely Anything Trailer

If you could change absolutely anything in the world, what would it be? This is the ultimate question that Neil Clarke finds himself faced with when he wakes up with the ability to become whoever he wants to be, have whatever he wants and make the impossible very easily possible. Little does he know that this is a test set up by some disgruntled extra-terrestrial lifeforms, who have given the following ultimatum: use this ultimate power for good, or watch the Earth burn. Unfortunately, Neil has a lot of things in his own life that he would like to change, let alone important things in the rest of the world. He wishes for an easier life, to be more attractive and to win the heart of his neighbour Catherine. But, as Spider-Man once said, with great power comes great responsibility, so if he is thinking of making some big changes, he ought to make sure he's really thought them through first.

Continue: Absolutely Anything Trailer

John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Terry Jones and Michael Palin - 2015 Tribeca Film Festival - Special Screening Narrative: 'Monty Python And The Holy Grail' at Beacon Theatre at Beacon Theater, Tribeca Film Festival, Beacon Theatre - New York City, New York, United States - Friday 24th April 2015

Monty Python To Reunite At Tribeca, As Film Festival Marks 40th Anniversary Of 'Holy Grail'

By Stephanie Chase in Movies / TV / Theatre on 11 March 2015

Monty Python John Cleese Eric Idle Michael Palin Terry Gilliam Terry Jones

The film, along with a new documentary will be screened next month at the annual New York festival.

It’s been four decades since Monty Python gave moviegoers an unforgettable laugh, when their first film Monty Python and the Holy Grail hit cinemas in 1975. So of course it's only fitting that the comedy troupe have found the best way possible to celebrate the landmark anniversary, by attending the Tribeca Film Festival for a special screening of the cult classic.

Image caption The Python boys are headed to Tribeca

The film will be shown on April 24th at The Beacon Theatre during the annual movie festival which runs from April 15th to 26th in downtown Manhattan. Surviving Python members John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Terry Jones, and Michael Palin have all been confirmed as making the trip, which will also include the premiere of a new documentary filmed around the group’s reunion shows in London last year.

Continue reading: Monty Python To Reunite At Tribeca, As Film Festival Marks 40th Anniversary Of 'Holy Grail'

Michael Palin - Michael Palin outside the ITV studios - London, United Kingdom - Monday 8th December 2014

Mick Jagger Hazes Monty Python In Video For (Mostly) Live Reunion

By Victoria Pavlova in Movies / TV / Theatre on 03 July 2014

Monty Python John Cleese Eric Idle Michael Palin Terry Gilliam Terry Jones

The Pythons might not be back at full force, but if it's nostalgia you're after, they have plenty.

The last ever round of Monty Python reunion shows has been getting mixed reviews since its first night, July 1. While most fans likely filled the 20,000 seats of the O2 Arena because of nostalgia, rather than curiosity, the Pythons were accused of pandering to the point of being unfunny.

Image caption Eric Idle - The Pythons return for one final round of gigs.

In a fit of nostalgia, they performed a collection of classic sketches, including the Four Yorkshiremen and the Lumberjack Song. They concluded the show with a sing-along to the ever popular Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life.

Continue reading: The End Is Nigh: Monty Python Reunite For Final Round Of Gigs At The O2

Mick Jagger Takes The Mickey In Monty Python Reunion Tour Video

By Lauren James in Movies / TV / Theatre on 01 July 2014

Mick Jagger Monty Python Eric Idle John Cleese Charlie Watts Terry Gilliam Michael Palin Terry Jones Rolling Stones

The Rolling Stones rocker was recruited to get the jokes rolling before curtains up.

Mick Jagger has starred in a promotional video for the upcoming Monty Python live shows, the first of which will be held tonight at London's O2 venue. The Rolling Stones rocker displays his witty sense of humour as well as his ability to laugh at himself by dismissing the Python troupe as "a bunch of wrinkly old men."

Jagger is shown sitting on his sofa with drummer Charlie Watts watching the World Cup before discussing Python's reunion. "Monty Python? Are they still going?" he asks in mock amazement. "Who wants to see that again? It was funny in the Sixties."

When an aide tells him that tickets for the first gig at London's O2 arena sold out in 40 seconds, Jagger replies "Wow. They must be coining it in. That's pretty amazing," adding "But they're still a bunch of wrinkly old men trying to relive their youth and make a load of money. I mean, the best one died years ago!"

Continue reading: Mick Jagger Takes The Mickey In Monty Python Reunion Tour Video

Michael Palin Tuesday 19th February 2008 UK premiere of 'The Other Boleyn Girl' held at the Odeon, Leicester Square - Arrivals London, England