Monty Python star Terry Gilliam breaks silence on having theatre show cancelled

·2-min read
Terry Gilliam attending a VIP screening of The Beatles: Get Back at Cineworld Leicester Square in London. Picture date: Tuesday November 16, 2021.
Terry Gilliam has addressed The Old Vic's cancellation of his production of 'Into The Woods'. (PA)

Monty Python star Terry Gilliam has broken his silence on having his show cancelled by The Old Vic theatre - calling it a threat to "Freedom of Recommendation".

The 81-year-old filmmaker was due to co-direct a production of Stephen Sondheim's fairytale musical Into The Woods at the historic London theatre next year.

But last month The Old Vic announced it was calling off the production amid reports that some staff were unhappy with 'controversial remarks' the director had made.

Gilliam has now addressed the cancellation his Facebook page saying: "It is very sad that a great cultural institution like The Old Vic allowed itself to be intimidated into cancelling our production of Into The Woods by a small group of closed-minded, humour-averse ideologues on their staff, who absurdly, call themselves 'The Old Vic 12' if they are the victims of some cruel injustice desperately fighting for their freedom!

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"My unspeakable crime was recommending my Facebook followers to watch a Netflix special by a brilliant and provocative American comedian, and then share with me their opinions. They did and civilisation did not collapse! However, The Old Vic's artistic credibility certainly has.

"Freedom of Speech is often attacked, but I never imagined that Freedom of Recommendation would be under threat as well."

The Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas director had previously recommended his 493k Facebook followers watch US comedian Dave Chappelle's controversial new Netflix show, The Closer.

Dave Chappelle (Netflix)
Gilliam was 'cancelled' for his support of comedian Dave Chappelle. (Netflix)

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Gilliam also revealed that production is set to go ahead at a theatre in Bath next year.

He added: "I want to let you know that our production of Into The Woods has found a beautiful and welcoming new home, the Theatre Royal in Bath. The show will open 19 August 2022."

Stand-up comedian Chappelle sparked outrage in October over jokes he made about trans people in the Netflix special.

Gilliam posted on social media during the backlash: "I'm encouraging all of you to watch Dave Chappelle's new show, The Closer, on Netflix. To me, he's the greatest stand-up comedian alive today: incredibly intelligent, socially aware, dangerously provocative, and gut-wrenchingly funny. There is a storm brewing over Netflix's support for the show. I'd love to hear your opinions."

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