Cleese wrote and appeared in the hit comedy film A fish called Wanda – also starring Kevin Kline and Jamie Lee Curtis – and he revealed on the latest episode of his new talk show that a man was laughing so hard at a screening of the film that he had a cardiac arrest and died.
Cleese expanded on the story during a conversation on his GB News series, Dinosaur timesaying:
“Kevin Kline and I killed a man in Denmark. He was a dentist, he laughed a lot. A famous laugh. Very popular. It was in Aarhus, not a big city, but everyone knew him.
“And he went to see Wanda and he started laughing about two minutes later and never stopped.
They transported him dead, he had had a heart attack.
Cleese arrived at the forefront of British comedy with his Monty Python series and later sitcom Fawlty Towers, and also shared her experience with depression. He recalled that many fans had shared with him over the years the benefits of making each other laugh, stories that made him reevaluate the value of creating comedy.
“I realized about ten years ago that making people laugh is much more than just making them laugh. When you do a Comicon (fan event) or something like that and people come and say, “Thank you for making me laugh all these years,” it leaves you with a tear in your eye.
“It’s beautiful, beautiful. Others thank me for helping me through some difficult times. And we suddenly realize that if people laugh, it helps, it’s not just entertainment.
A fish called Wandareleased in 1988, was made on a budget of $7.5 million and grossed $188 million at the worldwide box office.