The ‘most unlucky production in screen history’ will premiere at Cannes film festival

Former Monty Python member and London director Terry Gilliam was discharged from hospital after suffering a minor stroke and the day before a French court ruled on a long-standing rights battle affecting the world premiere of his new film.

The judge ordered that “The Man Who Killed Don Quixote” could go ahead as the closing gala of the Cannes Film Festival on 19 May.

The film, which has been in the making since 1989 and has a reputation as one of the most unlucky production in screen history, has been the subject of a distribution rights disagreement.

Gilliam began filming in 1998, with Jean Rochefort as Quixote and Johnny Depp playing Toby Grisoni. However, the shooting had to stop after Rochefort became ill.

In addition, riddled with financial difficulties and insurance problems, filming couldn’t continue.
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The director tried to restart the picture on several occasions, with the likes of Jack O’Connell, Ewan McGregor, John Hurt, Michael Palin and Robert Duvall. But due to mounted delays and funding falling through, production was halted.

In 2015, Amazon signed on to distribute the film. However, following the allegations against Roy Price, the man who approved the deal, in the Hollywood sexual harassment scandal, the company decided to drop U.S. distribution of the film.

Amazon has been reviewing the types of movies it makes and distributes in his absence.

Last month, producer Paulo Branco launched a legal challenge to stop the screening of “The Man Who Killed Don Quixote”, claiming that his company Alfama Films owns the right.

However, the court ruled in Gilliam’s favour, dismissing Branco’s attempt to stop the premiere.


According to The Guardian, before the court ruling came through, the festival said it would back Terry Gilliam and planned to proceed with the premiere.

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