Python star's life animated
A film about one of Leicestershire's favourite sons was due to have its premiere today – but will not be screened in the county until next month.
A Liar's Autobiography – The Untrue Story of Monty Python's Graham Chapman, was being launched at selected cinemas, mainly in London.
From Tuesday, a string of other cinemas across the country will screen the animated 3D film, which features Pythons John Cleese, Terry Jones, Michael Palin and Terry Gilliam.
It is to be screened at Phoenix, Leicester, on March 16 and 18.
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John Bailey, 72, of Melton – a prefect in the sixth form of King Edward VII School, Melton, when the Python star was head boy – said: "I'm surprised more of an effort wasn't made to get its premiere screened in Leicestershire, where he grew up.
"We've made efforts to remember him in Melton by having a plaque put up at the old grammar school. With a bit of luck, the cinema in Melton will show it when it reopens.
"We were big friends at school. There was a group of us who used to go about together everywhere."
Chapman was born in Wigston and began his performing career at the school. He died from cancer, aged 48, in 1989.
June Anderson, chairman of the Edwardians association of former pupils of the grammar school, said: "I do think Leicester should have been one of the venues for the first screening of the film.
"I would very much like to see it. I think it will be very interesting."
Edwardians president Alan Pymm said: " A lot of people, especially old grammar school pupils, are proud of the fact that Graham was one of us as, indeed, is the Melton public."
Co-directed by Bill Jones – son of Python star Terry – Ben Timlett and Jeff Simpson, the film uses an array of animation styles to take audiences on a psychedelic journey into Chapman's life that is full of flights of fancy.
A spokesman for the film's distributors said: "The film will be screened in 3D at the Phoenix on March 16 and 18.
"It's a niche film and if blockbusters are playing well at cinemas, they will continue screening those."
The film will be available to view on demand from a number of online platforms from Monday and will be available on DVD and 3D BluRay from February 18.