Carry On Columbus is a 1992 British film, which hoped to revive the popular Carry On film series from The '50s—The '70s with a comic celebration of the 500th anniversary of Christopher Columbus' first transatlantic voyage. Loads of fans were hesitant over the outcome of the film when it was first announced, due to being "screwed over" with the last two failures from the mid-'70s.
It was obvious to everyone that no one they recognised would be coming back. Most of the regulars at this point were either dead or too busy: Sidney James, Peter Butterworth, and Hattie Jacques had died of heart attacks in 1976, 1979, and 1980 respectively, Kenneth Williams died of a drug overdose in 1988, Charles Hawtrey had been fired (but he'd returned when he was fired once before) and then died of peripheral vascular disease in 1988, Terry Scott had departed after Carry On Matron and was terminally ill with cancer, Barbara Windsor was a regular on EastEnders, Bernard Bresslaw had left after Carry On Behind and was appearing in bit parts on television, Kenneth Connor was a regular on 'Allo 'Allo!, and Joan Sims was a regular on On The Up. (The ones that were alive at the time were considered, but Windsor and Connor openly called the script "crap" and the others were, as said before, unavailable.)
So who could they get?
Jim Dale stars as the titular Columbus who convinces the King and Queen of Spain (Leslie Phillips and June Whitfield) to fund his journey to explore the Eastern world. However, the Sultan of Turkey (Rik Mayall), who's been unimpressed with travelling salesmen's products that fight to see him, sends a spy named Fatima (Sara Crowe) to wreck the trip.
Tropes included are:
- Belly Dancer: Fatima's introduction has her walk into the main hall of the Turkish Sultan's palace, shake her goods around for a minute and finally present herself to the Sultan to receive her mission.
- Bold Explorer: The film turned the bold exploits of explorer Christopher Columbus into a silly sex farce.
- The Cameo:
- Canon Discontinuity: This film is missing from the supposedly complete box set Carry On: The Ultimate Collection.
- Getting Crap Past the Radar: In usual Carry On format.
- After a messenger arrives to the Sultan's palace, the Sultan and his Wazir (Nigel Planer) have a conversation:The Wazir: He brings news of what the Lisbonians are getting up to.
The Sultan: I don't care what they get up to, as long as they don't do it in the street and frighten the camels!
The Wazir: No, no, sir, the city of Lisbon.
The Sultan: Oh! The one in Portugal?
The Wazir: Quite correct, O mighty one.
- The Queen seeing great potential in Columbus by claiming to her husband that she's "seen his testimonials".
- After a messenger arrives to the Sultan's palace, the Sultan and his Wazir (Nigel Planer) have a conversation:
- Title Drop: The last line of the film.Fatima: Carry on, Columbus.