Saturday, May 31, 2008

Rare Pre-Monty Python Footage Unearthed

A precursor to Monty Python, which was once believed to have been lost forever, is to receive a rare screening next month. Michael Palin and Terry Jones will take to the stage to introduce their 1969 sketch show, The Complete And Utter History, on London’s South Bank.

The comedy, which aired on ITV, was presented like a news show, with ‘live’ footage from historical events such as the Battle of Hastings. The original tapes were thought to have been wiped straight after transmission, as video was expensive and storage space at a premium at the time.

For several years the only surviving footage were the film inserts which Jones collected. Three editions have recently resurfaced through the British Film Institute’s Missing Believed Wiped initiative, which aims to recover lost footage from collectors and other sources.