EPIX ANNOUNCES THE START OF PRODUCTION ON GRAHAM CHAPMAN'S "A LIAR'S AUTOBIOGRAPHY"
MEMBERS OF MONTY PYTHON REUNITE FOR 3D ANIMATED FEATURE BASED ON CHAPMAN'S BOOK
New York, NY - June 27, 2011 - EPIX, the premium entertainment channel, video-on-demand and online service announced that it is in production on A Liar's Autobiography, a film based on the memoir of the late Monty Python member, Graham Chapman, who died in 1989. The 3D animated feature, made in association with Bill and Ben Productions Ltd., Trinity (UK) and Brainstorm Media, tells the story of Chapman's life in the famously atypical Python style. The film's world television premiere will be in both 2D and 3D on EPIX and EpixHD.com in the Spring of 2012 and released theatrically in the UK by London-based Trinity.
The EPIX original will feature recordings of Chapman that he made of his book in 1982. Premiering under the newly introduced EPIX Pictures banner, the film reunites members of the Monty Python troupe.
"This innovative and modern take on Chapman's comic genius is an exciting event, and EPIX is thrilled to premiere A Liar's Autobiography in the United States," said EPIX President and CEO Mark Greenberg.
"I had no idea until recently that Graham Chapman is in fact dead�I thought he was just being lazy," said Monty Python's Terry Jones. "However, I am now delighted to find myself working with him again on this exciting project."
The feature is being produced and directed with that trademark Python humor by Bill Jones, Ben Timlett and Jeff Simpson of London-based Bill and Ben Productions, responsible for Who Killed Nancy, Rebel Truce - The History of the Clash, Chemical Wedding, Monty Python Almost the Truth: the Lawyers Cut.
"We've been working closely with the Chapman estate and the Pythons to make sure we get this exactly right," said co-director Jeff Simpson. "Graham would be delighted that his work is being re-imagined in glorious 3D. He always loved wearing silly glasses."
Executive producers Mark Sandell of Trinity (UK) and Meyer Shwarzstein of Brainstorm Media will distribute the animated feature in the United Kingdom and the United States, respectively.
The British comedy group Monty Python is best known for their television comedy sketch show Monty Python's Flying Circus, which first aired on BBC in 1969. The series was created, written, and performed by Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Terry Jones, and Michael Palin. The troupe brought their comedy to the big screen with the feature films And Now for Something Different (1971), Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975), Monty Python's Life of Brian (1979), and Monty Python's the Meaning of Life (1983).
EPIX, a joint venture between Viacom Inc. (NYSE: VIA and VIA.B), its Paramount Pictures unit, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc. (MGM) and Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF), is a next-generation premium entertainment channel, video-on-demand and online service launched on October 30, 2009. With access to more than 15,000 motion pictures spanning the vast libraries of its partners and other studios, EPIX provides a powerful entertainment experience with more feature films on demand and online and more HD movies than any other service. It is the only premium service providing its entire monthly line-up of new Hollywood titles, classic feature films, original series, music and comedy specials through the linear channel, video-on-demand and online at EpixHD.com, the leading online destination for movies. EPIX has made the commitment to deliver the industry's most expansive online collection of movies, making more than 3,000 titles available on EpixHD.com. The service is available to over 30 million homes nationwide through distribution partners including Charter Communications, Cox Communications, DISH Network, Mediacom Communications, NCTC, Suddenlink Communications and Verizon FiOS. For more information about EPIX, go to www.EpixHD.com.
About Bill and Ben Productions
Bill and Ben Productions, headed up by Bill Jones and Ben Timlett, has been producing award-winning film and television content since 1998. In 2009 Bill and Ben produced and directed the multi-Prime Time Emmy Award nominated MONTY PYTHON ALMOST THE TRUTH - THE LAWYER'S CUT, a 6 x 1 hour documentary series, and a 100-minute theatrically released feature film telling the story of Monty Python from its humble beginnings to ground-breaking TV and film institution, marking the Python's 40th anniversary celebration. For A LIAR'S AUTOBIOGRAPHY, they are joined by co-director Jeff Simpson, formerly of the BBC, whose credits include MARTY FELDMAN: SIX DEGREES OF SEPARATION and GIRLS AND BOYS: A HISTORY OF BRITISH POP.
Trinity is an independent UK film distribution and production company. Most recently it has been working on films as Gaspar Noe's ENTER THE VOID, Philip Seymour-Hoffman's JACK GOES BOATING, and Denis Villeneuve's INCENDIES.
About Brainstorm Media
Founded in 1995, Brainstorm Media is the premiere independent aggregator of feature films for Video on Demand and television in the United States. The company manages a library of hundreds of movies and its clients have included; Lions Gate, Blockbuster, BMG, The Samuel Goldwyn Company, and Magnolia Pictures. The company also develops and produces feature films, documentaries and series. In 2010, they were the first company to make a film available on VOD stereoscopically. For more information please consult www.brainmedia.net
About A Liar's Autobiography
A LIAR'S AUTOBIOGRAPHY is the eccentrically told autobiography of Graham Chapman. First published in Britain in 1980 and republished in 1999, the book gives readers a look into Chapman's hilarious and touching life. He relates the extraordinary and surreal account of his more than eventful life�whether as mountaineer or medical student; actor or alcoholic; heterosexual groupie guzzler or homosexual coming to terms with himself. As a celebrated member of the Monty Python team, his zany wit became familiar to millions of viewers worldwide. The New Yorker described A Liar's Autobiography to be "required reading for Monty Python fans," and London's Evening Standard claims that it is "an intercoursingly good book...definitely not a present for your aunty." A loony yet sincere account, this story uncovers the complexity and reality of Chapman's life. Monty Python player Graham Chapman's audio book was recorded and released in 1989 shortly before his death.
The Animation Companies currently working on the film;
Asylum Films, Made Visual Studio, Not to Scale, Treat Studio's, Peepshow, Steven Lall, Sherbert, Superfad, Mr & Mrs Smith, Trunk, Cake, Arthur Cox, A for Animation, Tundra and Beakus.