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John Cleese talks Donald Trump, Monty Python, 'coarse comedy' and more

By Steve Persall
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John Cleese

After a half-century of dead parrots, silly walks and singing lumberjacks, John Cleese knows strange when he sees it.

So, could Monty Python — the Beatles of British comedy that Cleese co-founded — dream up anything like Donald Trump's presidency?

"Oh, no, people literally would not have believed it," Cleese, 77, said by phone from England. "They would say this is going too far."

Cleese, who will be at Tampa's David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts for a Q&A and screening of Monty Python and the Holy Grail on Nov. 2, tosses barbs from a bipartisan seat in the peanut gallery, respecting Trump supporters who "didn't like Hillary Clinton, which I have to say is a reasonable point of view. I spent a lot of time trying to like her but I couldn't pull it off."

Click here for more on Cleese's appearance in Tampa. For more of Steve Persall's interview with John Cleese, click here.