John Cleese

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Real Name: John Marwood Cleese
Birth Place: Weston-Super-Mare, Somerset, England, UK
Birth Date: October 27, 1939
Occupation: Writer, Actor, Producer

John Cleese Biography

John Cleese was born on October 27, 1939, in Weston-Super-Mare, England. He was born into a family of modest means, his father being an insurance salesman; but he was nonetheless sent off to private schools to obtain a good education. Here he was often tormented for his height, having reached a height of six feet by the age of twelve, and eventually discovered that being humorous could deflect aggressive behavior in others. He loved humor in and of itself, collected jokes, and, like many young Britons who would grow up to be comedians, was devoted to the radio comedy show, "The Goon Show," starring the legendary Peter Sellers, Spike Milligan, and Harry Secombe.Cleese did well in both sports and academics, but his real love was comedy. He attended Cambridge to read (study) Law, but devoted a great deal of time to the university's legendary Footlights group, writing and performing in comedy reviews, often in collaboration with future fellow Python Graham Chapman. Several of these comedy reviews met with great success, including one in particular which toured under the name "Cambridge Circus." When Cleese graduated, he went on to write for the BBC, then rejoined Cambridge Circus in 1964, which toured New Zealand and America. He remained in America after leaving Cambridge Circus, performing and doing a little journalism, and here met Terry Gilliam, another future Python.Returning to England, he began appearing in a BBC radio series, "I'm Sorry, I'll Read That Again", based on Cambridge Circus. It ran for several years and also starred future Goodies Tim Brooke-Taylor, Bill Oddie and Graeme Garden. He also appeared, briefly, with Brooke-Taylor, Graham Chapman and Marty Feldman in "At Last the 1948 Show" (1967), for television, and a series of collaborations with some of the finest comedy-writing talent in England at the time, some of whom - Eric Idle, Terry Gilliam, Terry Jones, Michael Palin, and Chapman - eventually joined him in Monty Python. These programs included "The Frost Report" (1966) and Marty Feldman's program "Marty" (1968). Eventually, however, the writers were themselves collected to be the talent for their own program, "Monty Python's Flying Circus" (1969), which displayed a strange and completely absorbing blend of low farce and high-concept absurdist humor, and remains influential to this day.After three seasons of the intensity of Monty Python, Cleese left the show, though he collaborated with one or more of the other Pythons for decades to come, including the Python movies released in the mid-70s to early 80s - Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975), Life of Brian (1979), Monty Python Live at the Hollywood Bowl (1982), and The Meaning of Life (1983). Cleese and then-wife Connie Booth collaborated in the legendary television series "Fawlty Towers" (1975), as the sharp-tongued, rude, bumbling yet somehow lovable proprietor of an English seaside hotel. Cleese based this character on a proprietor he had met while staying with the other Pythons at a hotel in Torquay, England. Only a dozen episodes were made, but each is truly hilarious, and he is still closely associated with the program to this day.Meanwhile Cleese had established a production company, Video Arts, for clever business training videos in which he generally starred, which were and continue to be enormously successful in the English-speaking world. He continues to act prolifically in movies, including in the hit comedy A Fish Called Wanda (1988), in the Harry Potter series, and in the James Bond series as the new Q, starting with The World Is Not Enough (1999), in which he began as R before graduating to Q. Cleese also supplies his voice to numerous animated and video projects, and frequently does commercials.Besides the infamous Basil Fawlty character, Cleese's other well-known trademark is his rendition of an English upper-class toff. He has a daughter with Connie Booth and a daughter with his second wife, Barbara Trentham. As of January 19, 2008, he became embroiled in divorce proceedings with third wife (of nineteen years) Alyce Faye Eichelberger.Education and learning are important elements of his life - he was Rector of the University of Saint Andrews from 1973 until 1976, and continues to be a professor-at-large of Cornell University in New York. Cleese lives in Santa Barbara, California.

John Cleese Movies / TV-Shows

A Life on Screen: Michael Palin (2018)
Trolls (2016)
Albion: The Enchanted Stallion (2016)
Speechless (2016)
Charlie Brooker's Wipe Charlie Brooker's 2016 Wipe (2016)
Silicon Cowboys (2016)
A.C.O.R.N.S.: Operation Crackdown (2015)
Absolutely Anything (2015)
The Late Show with Stephen Colbert (2015)
Monty Python Live (2014)
Over the Garden Wall (2014)
Spud 3: Learning to Fly (2014)
Late Night with Seth Meyers (2014)
The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon (2014)
Spud 2: The Madness Continues (2013)
The Croods (2013)
Planes (2013)
A Liar's Autobiography: The Untrue Story of Monty Python's Graham Chapman (2012)
God Loves Caviar (2012)
Tales of Television Centre (2012)
The Last Leg (2012)
Beethoven's Christmas Adventure (2011)
Winnie the Pooh (2011)
The Big Year (2011)
Whitney (2011)
The Undefeated (2011)
Shrek Forever After (2010)
Spud (2010)
Conan (2010)
Pointless Celebrities (2010)
Planet 51 (2009)
The Pink Panther 2 (2009)
Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (2009)
The Day the Earth Stood Still (2008)
Igor (2008)
Shrek the Third (2007)
The Graham Norton Show (2007)
Charlotte's Web (2006)
Man About Town (2006)
The Art of Football from A to Z (2006)
The One Show (2006)
Stranger Than Fiction (2006)
Valiant (2005)
Complete Guide to Guys (2005)
Shrek 2 (2004)
Around the World in 80 Days (2004)
Wine for the Confused (2004)
Entourage (2004)
Scorched (2003)
Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle (2003)
George of the Jungle 2 (2003)
Stupidity (2003)
Jimmy Kimmel Live! (2003)
Real Time with Bill Maher (2003)
Imagine (2003)
Comedy Connections (2003)
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002)
Die Another Day (2002)
The Adventures of Pluto Nash (2002)
Pinocchio (2002)
Timeshift (2002)
Last Call with Carson Daly (2002)
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (2001)
Rat Race (2001)
Mickey's Magical Christmas: Snowed in at the House of Mouse (2001)
Mickey's House of Villains (2001)
Isn't She Great (2000)
The World Is Not Enough (1999)
The Out-of-Towners (1999)
Will & Grace (1998)
Parting Shots (1998)
Monty Python's Flying Circus: Live at Aspen (1998)
George of the Jungle (1997)
Fierce Creatures (1997)
3rd Rock from the Sun (1996)
Mr. Toad's Wild Ride (1996)
The Daily Show (1996)
MADtv (1995)
The Swan Princess (1994)
The Jungle Book (1994)
Frankenstein (1994)
Room 101 (1994)
Splitting Heirs (1993)
Late Show with David Letterman (1993)
Late Night with Conan O'Brien (1993)
Funny Business (1992)
An American Tail: Fievel Goes West (1991)
Bullseye! (1990)
Erik the Viking (1989)
The Big Picture (1989)
Parrot Sketch Not Included: Twenty Years of Monty Python (1989)
A Fish Called Wanda (1988)
The Grand Knockout Tournament (1987)
Clockwise (1986)
Silverado (1985)
The Meaning of Life (1983)
Privates on Parade (1983)
Yellowbeard (1983)
Monty Python Live at the Hollywood Bowl (1982)
Cheers (1982)
Time Bandits (1981)
The Great Muppet Caper (1981)
Life of Brian (1979)
Not the Nine O'Clock News (1979)
CBS News Sunday Morning (1979)
The South Bank Show (1978)
The Strange Case of the End of Civilization as We Know It (1977)
The Muppet Show (1976)
Ripping Yarns (1976)
Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)
Romance with a Double Bass (1975)
Arena (1975)
Saturday Night Live (1975)
Last of the Summer Wine (1973)
Monty Python's Fliegender Zirkus (1972)
And Now for Something Completely Different (1971)
Doctor at Large (1971)
The Statue (1971)
The Rise and Rise of Michael Rimmer (1970)
The Goodies (1970)
The Magic Christian (1969)
David Frost Presents How to Irritate People (1969)
Doctor in the House (1969)
Monty Python's Flying Circus (1969)
Doctor Who (1963)
The Avengers (1961)
Comedy Playhouse (1961)

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