John Cleese says humor left James Bond franchise to cater to Asian audiences

By Daniel S Levine,

The James Bond franchise used to be known for its one-liners as much as “shaken not stirred,” the gadgets and agent 007’s style. However, the Daniel Craig films have been mostly devoid of humor and Monty Python comedian John Cleese isn’t happy with it.

Cleese appeared in two Pierce Brosnan Bond films, The World Is Not Enough (1998) and Die Another Day (2002). According to The Telegraph, he was asked for his opinion on the new Daniel Craig films, which are filled with action sequences and are more realistic than the Sean Connery or Roger Moore films.

“I did two James Bond movies and then I believe that they decided that the tone they needed was that of the Bourne action movies, which are very gritty and humourless,” Cleese told the Radio Times. “Also, the big money was coming from Asia, from the Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia, where the audiences go to watch the action sequences, and that’s why in my opinion the action sequences go on for too long, and it’s a fundamental flaw.”

Cleese suggested that Asian audiences would not get the jokes and the witty British sense of humor that used to be in the films.

Of course, Sony and MGM aren’t likely to listen to Cleese’s advice. The last Bond, 2012’s Skyfall, is the highest-grossing British film and Bond film of all time. The Sam Mendes-directed film earned $1.1 billion worldwide and became the first Bond film to win Oscars.

image courtesy of INFevents.com

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