John Cleese: "James Bond" 'gritty and humorless'

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The 20th installment in the Bond series has Pierce Brosnan's suave secret agent up against North Korean General Zao (Rick Yune), a diabolical mind who has created a facial mutation device that allows him to take on various identities. Halle Berry co-stars as Bond's latest femme fatale.
June 24th, 2014

John Cleese thinks the latest 'James Bond' films have a ''fundamental flaw''.

The 'Monty Python' star - who played gadget maker Q in 1999's 'The World Is Not Enough' and 2002's 'Die Another Day' - thinks the directors of more recent Bond films have compromised tradition in favor of attracting wider audiences.

He said: ''I did two James Bond movies and then I believe that they decided that the tone they needed was that of the 'Bourne' action movies, which are very gritty and humourless.

''Also the big money was coming from Asia, from the Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia, where the audiences go to watch the action sequences, and that's why in my opinion the action sequences go on for too long, and it's a fundamental flaw.''

The 74-year-old funny-man - who was replaced by 33-year-old Ben Whishaw as Q in 2012's 'Skyfall' - is glad that Bond filmmakers have maintained the comedy undertones of the films, however, despite them not attracting the Asian market.

Cleese told the Radio Times magazine: ''The audiences in Asia are not going [to see the movies] for the subtle British humour or the class jokes.''