Terry Gilliam

Highest Rated: 100% An Accidental Studio (2019)
Birthday: Nov 22, 1940
Birthplace: Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
For most of Terry Gilliam's early career, fans of the popular comedy show Monty Python's Flying Circus assumed that he was British, since Python's other five members were natives of Britain. But the innovative animator and future director, who spent more time behind the scenes than in front of the camera, was actually the troupe's only American member. Born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on November 22, 1940, Gilliam was briefly employed as an assistant editor for Help! magazine (a job that introduced him to English comedian John Cleese, who was in NYC posing for a comic photo-strip in the magazine); he then emigrated to England in 1967. Soon after gilliam arrived in the U.K., he began working on Do Not Adjust Your Set, a popular children's TV show, developing his eccentric animated cartoons, which put into motion a hodgepodge of images, including photographs, cutouts from magazines, and famous works of art. Gilliam's contributions to the show were geared more toward adults, as his surrealistic stream-of-consciousness segments, drenched in black humor, were beyond the grasp of most children.In 1969, Gilliam was asked by Cleese and others to join the absurdist comedy troupe Monty Python. In addition to writing for Monty Python's Flying Circus, Gilliam also contributed his animated interludes, for which he was pretty much left to his own devices; the other Pythons just told him how much time he needed to fill and never gave him any narrative direction. Gilliam began offering his iconoclastic vision to moviegoers with the comedy troupe's first original film, Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975), which he co-directed with fellow Python Terry Jones. An instant cult classic, the movie contained all the requisite Python elements: absurdist humor, self-referential parody, and extremely quotable dialogue. The following year, Gilliam had his first outing as a solo director with Jabberwocky (1976). Based on the poem by Lewis Carroll, the film featured a medieval setting similar to that of Holy Grail and starred Pythonite Michael Palin. Along with Python's brand of irreverent humor, the film featured glimmers of the visual resplendence that would become the director's trademark. But critics found it awkward and repetitive, and audiences largely stayed away. Following Jabberwocky's relative failure, Gilliam regrouped with his fellow Pythonites, co-creating The Life of Brian, the tale of a man with the misfortune of being confused with Jesus Christ. He left the directing duties to Terry Jones, focusing on animation, screenwriting, and acting. Gilliam returned to directing with Time Bandits (1979), a surreal journey through history led by a small boy and several dwarves. Bearing many similarities to Jabberwocky, Time Bandits relied less on repetition and moved the audience more briskly from one scene to the next. It did well at the box office and put Gilliam in the ranks of directors to watch.After co-directing with Terry Jones the third and final Python film, Monty Python's the Meaning of Life (1983), Gilliam made what many people consider his masterpiece, the dystopian satire Brazil (1985). Instead of journeying back to the Middle Ages, Gilliam boldly predicted a retro-1930s future of anonymous office drones commanded by an all-powerful computer. Blindingly imaginative, the film starred Jonathan Pryce as Sam Lowery, who attempts to escape the stifling bureaucratic system by fantasizing about being a superhero, and later by actually battling the powers-that-be in his own cowardly fashion. Consistently blurring the line between fantasy and reality and uncompromising in its surreal eccentricity, Gilliam's masterwork has been called Orwellian, Kafkaesque, and Luddite. A failure at the box office, Brazil has made up for that disappointment with its cult status. In addition to critical praise and a Los Angeles Film Critics award for Best Film, Gilliam received an Oscar nomination for Best Original Screenplay.It was four years before Gilliam steppe

Highest Rated Movies



62% The Man Who Killed Don Quixote Screenwriter Director 2019
100% An Accidental Studio Actor 2019
18% Absolutely Anything Nasty Alien $0.7M 2017
No Score Yet Gaga For Dada - The Original Art Rebels Actor 2016
26% Jupiter Ascending Seal and Signet Minister $43.8M 2015
No Score Yet Terry Gilliam's Benvenuto Cellini - English National Opera Director 2015
50% The Zero Theorem Director 2014
62% For No Good Reason Actor $67.6K 2014
No Score Yet Monty Python Live (Mostly) Actor $1.2M 2014
No Score Yet Monty Python: The Meaning Of Live Actor 2014
43% A Liar's Autobiography - The Untrue Story of Monty Python's Graham Chapman Actor 2012
92% Ray Harryhausen: Special Effects Titan Actor 2011
No Score Yet Monty Python: Almost the Truth - The Lawyers Cut Actor 2011
86% George Harrison: Living In The Material World Actor 2011
No Score Yet The Wholly Family Director 2011
No Score Yet The Monster of Nix The Ranger 2011
92% Who is Harry Nilsson (And Why is Everybody Talkin' About Him)? Actor $30.3K 2010
No Score Yet Dante Ferretti: Scenografo Italiano Actor 2010
No Score Yet Not the Messiah (He's a Very Naughty Boy) Actor 2010
64% The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus Screenwriter Producer Director $7.6M 2009
No Score Yet Monty Python Almost the Truth Obligatory Making of Special Actor 2009
No Score Yet Monty Python - Before & After Actor 2008
45% The Piano Tuner of Earthquakes Executive Producer Producer Dr. Emmanuel Droz 2006
31% Tideland Screenwriter Director 2006
No Score Yet Locked Out (Enfermes Dehors) Actor 2006
38% The Brothers Grimm Director 2005
No Score Yet Getting Gilliam Actor 2005
95% Great Performances Actor $70.5K 2003
94% Lost in La Mancha Actor 2003
63% Breakfast With Hunter Actor 2003
No Score Yet Concert for George Actor 2003
49% Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas Screenwriter Director 1998
No Score Yet The Hamster Factor and Other Tales of 12 Monkeys Actor 1997
89% Twelve Monkeys (12 Monkeys) Director 1995
83% The Fisher King Director 1991
No Score Yet Life of Python Actor 1990
No Score Yet Monty Python's Parrot Sketch Not Included Actor 1989
92% The Adventures of Baron Munchausen Director Screenwriter 1989
32% Spies Like Us Dr. Imhaus 1985
98% Brazil Director Screenwriter 1985
No Score Yet The Secret Policeman's Private Parts Actor 1984
22% Yellowbeard Screenwriter 1983
No Score Yet The Crimson Permanent Assurance Director 1983
85% Monty Python's The Meaning of Life Third Fish Private Walters Max Howard Donor Window Washer/Fish #4/Walters/Middle of the Film Announcer Director Screenwriter 1983
No Score Yet Monty Python Live at the Hollywood Bowl Various roles Mao Zedong Screenwriter 1982
89% Time Bandits Director Screenwriter Producer 1981
95% Monty Python's Life of Brian Person Masked Jailer Prophet Revolutionary Screenwriter 1979
47% Jabberwocky Screenwriter Man with Rock Director 1977
No Score Yet Pleasure at Her Majesty's (Monty Python Meets Beyond the Fringe) Actor 1976
97% Monty Python and the Holy Grail Patsy/Soothsayer, Old Man from Scene 24 1975
90% Monty Python's And Now for Something Completely Different Screenwriter Various roles Flasher #1 Director 1972


No Score Yet The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon
  • 2019
  • 2014
No Score Yet The Graham Norton Show
  • 2014
No Score Yet Great Performances
  • 2004
100% Monty Python's Flying Circus
Performer Screenwriter Director