“Always look on the bright side of life.” That’s just one of the many lessons learned from Monty Python’s Flying Circus. The infamous comedy troupe holds a special place in the hearts of fans around the world, with movies such as Monty Python and the Holy Grail continuing to blow new fans away today as they did when they first came out. But many fans will agree that it was the Life of Brian that stuck with them and put the Pythons over the top.
In addition to writing several books about Monty Python, being John Cleese’s assistant and a fictional creation of Graham Chapman (according to Eric Idle), Kim “Howard” Johnson became one of the most ubiquitous extras in the film, outstripping even some of the Pythons with the number of on screen roles he played. And on top of all that, Johnson kept a daily journal of everything happening on the Life of Brian set in Tunisia. He essentially became the film’s biographer.
The result is an incredibly detailed account from a Python insider of the filming of one the funniest movies of all time. The day-to-day account of the film’s production is astonishing with details so precise that you almost feel like you’re on the set – sans the desert heat. Python fans will greatly enjoy this book, while choking back jealousy for not being able to share in the experience. But this is the next best thing.