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After 17 years of Pythonesque disasters, Terry Gilliam has finally finished making Don Quixote

The director Brazil and Twelve Monkeys is delighted to have finally finished the epic film.
Jun 10th 2017, 8:00 PM 20,218 11

72nd Venice Film Festival Director Terry Gilliam Source: Hubert Boesi DPA/PA Images

AGING FILM DIRECTOR Terry Gilliam has finally finished making his film version of the epic tale Don Quixote, after 17 years battling one disaster after another.

The Monty Python star suffered a series of Pythonesque calamities while trying to get the project off the ground.

Like the titular hero of Miguel de Cervantes’ classic tale, however, the 76-year-old Gilliam has remained strong and steadfast in his resolve, finally finishing shooting the film last weekend.

Gilliam, who has directed films such as Brazil and Twelve Monkeys, began his labour of love with Don Quixote back in the year 2000, having had the idea floating around since 1989.

The project was beset by mishaps from the beginning.

At various stages, Johnny Depp, Ewan McGregor, Robert Duvall and John Hurt were all signed on to appear in the 17th-century adaptation.

In the first aborted attempt, French actor Jean Rochefort, whose role as Quixote required riding a horse, developed back problems during shooting that put him out of action.

Furthermore, setbacks in 2000 included torrential rain and constant flyovers by military jets from a nearby NATO base.

Two men hired to record a “making-of” feature to accompany the film actually ended up making a documentary chronicling the difficult production with “Lost in La Mancha” telling the whole sorry story.

Since then, a series of funding problems and stars disappearing from the film has been a constant theme with eight false starts in getting it off the ground.

The new version features British actor Jonathan Pryce as Quixote. He starred in Gilliam’s 1985 hit Brazil, but is perhaps better known to younger viewers as the High Sparrow in the Game of Thrones television series.

Also on board is US actor Adam Driver, the villain in the latest Star Wars film; and the Ukrainian-born French actress Olga Kurylenko.

Last year, Gilliam told Jonathan Ross the latest funding mishap with the project: “I had this producer, a Portuguese chap, who claimed he’d get all the money together in time. And a few weeks ago, he proved that he didn’t have the money,

We are still marching forward. It is not dead. I will be dead before the film is.

In an interview with Spanish daily El Pais last year, Gilliam also signalled his refusal to surrender: “Shooting my version of Don Quixote is a medical obligation.

It’s a brain tumour I have to eradicate.

As of yet, there is no release date planned for the movie.

With reporting from AFP

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Read: Monty Python comeback show sells out in 43.5 seconds

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