Before 1988, ex-Monty Python troupe member Michael Palin thought he'd be remembered as little more than a very silly person. Then he set out on a journey that would become the travel series Around the World in 80 Days. Seventeen years later, the man who gained fame doing skits about dead parrots and twisted lumberjacks proudly identifies himself as a world explorer, having visited more than 80 countries for his travel documentaries. Here, talks with the Brit about his new Travel Channel series, Himalaya, debuting tonight at 10 pm/ET. Why did you decide to go to the Himalayas?
Michael Palin:
Well, I made a series called Sahara in 2001 that found a good audience share. I decided I wanted somewhere that would have lots of adventure, quite remote places to get to and difficult territory to work in, which obviously is what people liked about Sahara. So probably in some comfortable restaurant after a nice meal, I agreed and said, "Yes, let's go," only to reap the whirlwind later.