Trafalgar Releasing has acquired worldwide theatrical rights (except North America and selected others) to “Monty Python’s Life of Brian” ahead of a push to put the iconic comedy back in cinemas next year to mark its 40th anniversary. The deal sees most of the global rights sit with one distributor, whereas in the past there was a patchwork of deals in place.
Trafalgar, which was Picture House Entertainment before a management buyout and rebrand, has worked with the Python team before, on the theatrical release of 2014’s live show “Monty Python Live (mostly) – One Down Five to Go.” It registered 330,000 admissions globally.
“Monty Python’s Life of Brian” was the second major film from the comedy troupe and is a scathing satire of both religion and Hollywood’s depiction of all things biblical. It will be back in cinemas next year as part of a program of celebrations around the 40th anniversary.
The film fared well at the box office upon its release in 1979, but attracted the ire of the censors and authorities in several places. In the U.K. some regional councils sought to ban it or ensure it had an adult ratings certificate on the grounds it contained blasphemous content. It was banned outright in Ireland and Norway. Beatle George Harrison stepped in when the movie ran into financing problems and helped fund it.
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“We look forward to working with the Monty Python team again on the release of this incredibly important satirical masterpiece,” said Trafalgar Releasing CEO Marc Allenby. The company has global rights except North America, Australia, New Zealand and French speaking territories.
“Following our successful collaboration on the ‘Monty Python Live (mostly) – One Down Five to Go’ shows in 2014, we are excited to be working with the Trafalgar Releasing team again to bring ‘Life of Brian’ back into cinemas,” the Python team said in a statement.