To celebrate its 40th anniversary, Video Arts has launched a new version of the most widely-used training film of all time, Meetings, Bloody Meetings, starring John Cleese. This classic film shows how to plan, organise and control meetings that are shorter and more productive.
Meetings, Bloody Meetings was first produced by Video Arts in 1976 and it was re-made in 1992. Translated into more than thirty languages, it has remained a best-selling title for 36 years. Using the conventions of a court as an example, the film features five key learning points to help anyone run a more effective business meeting.
The 2012 version has been re-made to reflect the evolving business context and the advent of virtual teams and online meetings. John Cleese, who played the ‘manager’ in both previous versions, takes the role of the ‘judge’ this time, in his first appearance in a Video Arts training programme since 2001.
“Meetings are at the heart of every organisation but they’re also a prime cause of boredom, frustration and poor performance,” said Martin Addison, CEO of Video Arts. “When people feel their time has been wasted in a meeting, they lose respect not only for whoever is running the meeting but also for the wider organisation. Meetings, Bloody Meetings is a sharply-observed study of management with powerful learning points that have stood the test of time. It’s the best-selling film we’ve ever produced and re-making it is a reverent and fitting way to celebrate our 40th anniversary as a learning content provider.”
Video Arts, which pioneered the use of humour in management training, was founded in 1972 by John Cleese, Sir Antony Jay and two BBC colleagues, Peter Robinson and Michael Peacock.
At the time, John Cleese was well known as a member of Monty Python, the comedy troupe. This was three years before the sitcom Fawlty Towers was first broadcast in 1975. Sir Antony Jay is noted for writing the political comedy series Yes, Minister, which was first transmitted in 1980. He wrote many of the early Video Arts films with John Cleese, including Meetings, Bloody Meetings, and served as chairman of the company from 1972 to 1989.
“John Cleese and Tony Jay realised that if trainers could engage and entertain their audience with humour, they were more likely to succeed in getting their message across and the audience were more likely to remember it,” said Martin Addison. “The rest is history.”
A long list of British actors have appeared in Video Arts productions over the past 40 years, including Ronnie Corbett, Ronnie Barker, Emma Thompson, Stephen Fry, Rowan Atkinson, Dawn French, Hugh Laurie, Robert Lindsay, Martin Clunes and even Prince Charles!
Organisations that want to license the 2012 version of Meetings, Bloody Meetings have a range of platform options that reflect the impact that technology has had on learning - from streaming video as part of the Video Arts digital library, to an interactive e-learning course with pre and post course assessments or a mobile learning app, as well as DVD. Licence prices for the new programme start from £995 per year.
About Video Arts
Video Arts (videoarts.com) is the world’s leading provider of corporate video content. As well as generic, tailored and custom video training, it provides e-learning and m-learning solutions from its iLearn portal. Part of the Tinopolis group, Video Arts has won over 200 awards for its learning content.