Michael Palin, actor and writer We were on a publicity tour in Amsterdam for Monty Python and the Holy Grail when Eric Idle came up with the title Jesus Christ: Lust for Glory. We all laughed: “We could never do that!” But we liked the challenge of doing a film about religion. Then someone suggested it be set around the time when Jesus was alive, but it’s a case of mistaken identity. Someone who’s thought to be the Messiah, but spends the whole film protesting that he isn’t. Generally speaking, the Pythons wrote in separate groups who came together later. We ended up in Barbados for two weeks and got a lot of the script done there – the linking up of the various sketches. It gave the script a great clarity that Holy Grail and The Meaning of Life don’t have. EMI was going to finance the film, but got cold feet. It was a mortal blow, because we were already in pre-production. So Eric went to Hollywood and pitched it to George Harrison, who had been a huge Python fan since the first TV programme. He pawned his house and arranged a loan of $5m. When he was… Read full this story
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