On the Making of Terry Gilliam’s Time Bandits

Recently, I came across Robert Sellers’ excellent article It’s A Miracle That Terry Gilliam’s Time Bandits Even Got Made. For me, as a fan of Gilliam’s work behind the camera… this film was one of my first introductions to his work.

As a kid growing up in the 80’s with cable television, Time Bandits is one of those films that seemed to always be playing. I watched it so many times, there are still sections of the film that I feel I could quote verbatim, some 25+ years later.

Sellers’ article takes a really fun look behind the scenes, and gave me a lot of insight into the process (and problems) during the filming.

For example, I didn’t realize that George Harrison helped produce the film (and in one of the songs he wrote… included lyrics demanding an apology from Gilliam, in regards to Gilliam’s attitude during the filming). And also – can you imagine Jonathan Pryce as Evil?

Hearing about these details is a fun insight, and got me to watch the film again (via Netflix). Although for my money, there’s no imagining anyone other than David Warner as evil incarnate.

If I were creating the world I wouldn’t mess about with butterflies and daffodils. I would have started with lasers, eight o’clock, Day One!

Poor Liz – I made her watch this with me. She had never seen it before, and I think seeing this film now for the first time is definitely a different experience (it’s 32 years old, at this point). I find that I’m a fan of all of Gilliam’s movies, and that perhaps Liz is less so.

For those of you who remember this movie, and especially for those of you that count yourselves as fans of the movie… Sellers’ article is a must-read. It was definitely a blast of nostalgia – which is about as close as any of us ordinary people will get to traveling into the past.

PS: This might make it to my Christmas list.

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