The Monty Python team have pocketed an estimated £2.2 million each from their live shows, according to reports.

The comedy stars - John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Terry Jones and Michael Palin - joked when they announced their comeback that they needed the money.

And now it has been reported that the troupe have increased their fortune thanks to their string of performances at the O2 Arena in London, as well as earnings from a live cinema performance of their finale and a screening on UK Gold.

The Monty Python Live (Mostly): One Down, Five To Go shows have seen the surviving stars performing live together for the first time in 30 years.

An industry insider was quoted as saying: "Each will pocket at least £2.2 million. That's quite a tidy little sum for just 10 days of them performing material they could recite in their sleep."

It said that a portion will go to the estate of Graham Chapman, who died of cancer in 1989 but appears in clips in the shows.

Python Terry Jones previously said of their comeback: "I'm quite excited about it. I hope it makes us a lot of money. I hope to be able to pay off my mortgage!"

Earlier this year, a film producer who claimed a share of profits from Spamalot, won a High Court royalty fight with the Monty Python comedy team.

And John, who split from his third wife, Alyce Eichelberger, in 2008, has also told how in recent years he's " had to earn money for the alimony".

The reunion shows have raised more than £20,000 for a series of charities by auctioning a cameo role each night.

Fans have been given the chance to bid for their guest role in the classic "Bruces" sketch .

The Mercury Phoenix Trust, Shelter, the Roundhouse, Maggie's Centres and the NSPCC were chosen by the reunited team to receive money from the first five nights earlier this month.


The Stammering Centre, GOSH Charity, the Dispossessed Fund and Nordoff Robbins will benefit from the second batch of shows which are taking place this week.