SPEAKING FEE RANGE ** Please note that while this speaker’s specific speaking fee falls within the range posted above (for Continental U.S. based events), fees are subject to change. For current fee information or international event fees (which are generally 50-75% more than U.S based event fees), please contact us.
$75,000 and above
BOOK JOHN CLEESE
SPEAKING FEE RANGE*
$75,000 and above
Book John Cleese
- Cleese has been writing comedy for more than 50 years and has starred in more than 70 films.
- Cleese’s years of experience writing and starring in comedic roles have earned him numerous awards and accolades as an expert on humor and making audiences laugh.
- Drawing on some painful incidents growing up, and his years of writing and performing comedy, Cleese has honed his comedic skills and offers insight into finding humor, learning from mistakes, and the creative process.
- Before he appeared in numerous TV roles and more than 70 films, Cleese wrote and starred in “Fawlty Towers,” an iconic British comedy that aired on BBC in the 1970s.
John Cleese was six feet tall at 12 years old. This extreme height at his young age made him a perfect target for bullies. But rather than engage in their conflict, he turned to humor to soften them up and extinguish the fight. Years later, he co-founded the zany comedy troupe Monty Python, which was responsible for one of the most popular British comedy empires of the same name. The BBC’s head of comedy has described Cleese as a “comedy god.
Cleese grew up in England, and had a knack for seeing humor in unlikely places. He was a talented writer, so he began creating original scripts, and has done so throughout his life. He enrolled at Cambridge University to study law, but his love for comedy soon took him in that direction. Cleese began his professional comedy career by writing for David Frost’s “The Frost Report” in 1966.
In the mid-1970s, Cleese and his first wife co-wrote and starred in the British sitcom “Fawlty Towers.” He also wrote and starred in his early films “A Fish Called Wanda” and “Fierce Creatures.” Since then, he has starred in more than 70 films, including two James Bonds, two Harry Potters, and the last three Shreks. He is known for his work on TV programs such as “Cheers,” “Third Rock from the Sun,” “Will & Grace,” and the Emmy-nominated TLC documentary “The Human Face with John Cleese.” He also recorded the voice of God for Spamalot, the musical based on “Monty Python and the Holy Grail.”
He won a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor—Comedy Series (Cheers), and was nominated for three more Emmys, as well as an Academy Award and a Golden Globe. He received a BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role and for Best Light Entertainment Performance for “Fawlty Towers,” and was nominated for five more BAFTAs. He co-founded Video Arts, the world’s largest provider of business training programs. Cleese has authored 13 books and has two best-selling books on psychology—Families and How to Survive Them and Life and How to Survive It—and served briefly as Minister of Defense in the John Major Cabinet. His autobiography So…Anyway was released in September 2015.
Forty years ago, Cleese co-founded the Secret Policeman's Ball benefit shows staged to raise money for Amnesty International. He also is passionate about lemurs, and even has a lemur species that was named after him—the Bemaraha woolly lemur in Madagascar, also known as Cleese's woolly lemur, discovered in 1990.
Everyone knows John Cleese has a sharp wit and unique sense of humor. But many people don’t know his serious side as a business man. As founder of Video Arts, Cleese’s goal is to incorporate humor into its educational videos in order to make learning points more memorable. In 2005, he helped create one of the first viral internet videos for a business-to-business company. Although he continues to write comedic copy, he’s also helping marketers become more engaging storytellers. In his presentations, Cleese calls on his decades of telling stories to help audiences embrace their role as a storyteller.
The Importance of Mistakes
According to Cleese, unless we have a tolerant attitude towards mistakes, we run the risk of behaving irrationally, unscientifically and unsuccessfully. He tells audiences that true mistakes are things that are a reasonable try which didn’t come off. In this presentation, Cleese draws upon his past and how mistakes and vulnerability about them can actually help a group function more creatively. He says the keys are to lose inhibitions and gain confidence to contribute spontaneously. Since fear of making mistakes holds people back, he goes through techniques for dealing with these fears and how to replace them with something positive. He also addresses the problems that come when mistakes are denied, because not acknowledging a mistake means not correcting it.
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