Celebrity Birthday of the Day – January 8

Graham Chapman was a member of the greatest comedy troupe of all time: Monty Python’s Flying Circus! Before he became a Python, Chapman wrote for the BBC in the early 1960’s alongside John Cleese. Chapman contributed sketches to the BBC radio series I’m Sorry, I’ll Read That Again and some TV series as well. Chapman and Cleese also worked as actors on the comedy series At Least the 1948 Show with Marty Feldman, where Chapman displayed a talent for British dialects and deadpan humour. In 1969, Graham Chapman, Michael Palin, Terry Jones, Eric Idle, Terry Gilliam and John Cleese formed Monty Python’s Flying Circus and made comedy history, with four series of the Monty Python’s Flying Circus TV show and five awesome films: And Now For Something Completely Different, Monty Python and the Holy Grail, Monty Python’s Life of Brian, Monty Python Live at the Hollywood Bowl, and Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life. Unfortunately, Chapman struggled with alcoholism for much of his life, which lead to much tension among the Pythons until he stopped boozing in 1977. Chapman was also one of the first celebrities to come out as gay, which he did public on a chat show hosted by jazz musician George Melly, and subsequently became a vocal spokesman for LGBT rights. Graham Chapman died on October 7, 1989 of throat and spinal cancer, and at his funeral, John Cleese gave the greatest eulogy ever written. Chapman was 48 when he died.

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