John Cleese Trends As Talk Show Host Endorses Canceling Him

John Cleese has been publically claiming that he is "canceled" but others are pushing back.

By Douglas Helm | Published

Graham Norton recently spoke at the Cheltenham Literature Festival and discussed cancel culture, JK Rowling, and recent comments by John Cleese. Specifically, Norton pointed out that the phrase ‘cancel culture’ might not be an accurate term and that it’s more about accountability. In John Cleese’s case, the Monty Python actor has been very outspoken in complaining about being unable to say certain things.

Norton had a nuanced take on this as well, observing that it’s likely difficult for people like John Cleese who aren’t used to being held accountable. As Norton puts it, “It’s free speech, but not consequence-free.” John Cleese has recently accepted a role on GB News and has been vocally critical about what he perceives as cancel culture.

John Cleese wasn’t the only subject of discussion during the interview, as JK Rowling was also brought up. JK Rowling is another thorny subject of controversy, due to her views on the trans community. Norton had another great point about this, pointing out that the discussion shouldn’t be focused on people like him and JK Rowling, but rather that trans people, parents of trans people, and other experts should be consulted about these issues.

Although John Cleese is in the news more for his views nowadays, the comic actor is best known for his work on series like Monty Python’s Flying Circus, Fawlty Towers, and various other comedy series and films. His most recent TV series was Hold the Sunset, which aired on BBC for two seasons. Funnily enough, Cleese has made comments that he chose to go to GB news instead of BBC because he felt he “wouldn’t get five minutes into the first show before I’d been canceled.”

When John Cleese spoke about why he wouldn’t do a show for BBC, he also happened to be a guest on BBC’s Radio 4 news program. While being a presenter on a news program is a bit of a different look for Cleese, it’ll be interesting to see what he’ll be saying that he seemingly can’t say on a BBC show. Regardless, Cleese will be keeping busy with film roles outside of his new GB News gig.

However, the controversy around John Cleese doesn’t end around his thoughts on cancel culture, as he’ll also have a starring role in an upcoming movie with an incredibly controversial director — Roman Polanski. Polanski, who pled guilty to statutory rape before fleeing the country and moving to France, will be directing Cleese in the dark comedy The Palace. Fortunately, Cleese’s other upcoming movie projects don’t seem to have any controversial figures involved.

Along with the upcoming The Palace, John Cleese has quite a few projects released in the near future. His films Cut the Painter and the animated The Silk Road Rally are both set for a 2023 release. Meanwhile, he has two films — Wedding of the Year and The Martini Shot — which don’t have set release dates yet. It doesn’t seem like his new job at GB News is slowing down his acting career in the least.

As Graham Norton points out, John Cleese likely isn’t the perfect expert to be talking on various controversial topics. While it’s interesting to hear what celebrities have to say, it’s not always the best source of information. If you’d like to hear Norton’s full sit-down with Times Radio, you can check it out here.