Film News

Ron Howard to Helm Beatles Documentary

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To most people, The Beatles are the biggest and best band of all time. Me, I enjoy them, although I’m more of a Stone Roses or Doors kinda guy. For those big Beatles fans out there, word has surfaced to say that the brilliant Ron Howard will be directing a documentary focussed on the Fab Four’s touring years, including plenty of never-before-seen footage.

The official press release reads:

Apple Corps Ltd., White Horse Pictures and Imagine Entertainment have announced they will produce a new authorized documentary for Apple, based on the first part of The Beatles’ career — the touring years. The film will be directed by Academy Award-winning director Ron Howard and will be produced with the full cooperation of Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Yoko Ono Lennon and Olivia Harrison. White Horse’s Grammy Award-winning Nigel Sinclair, Scott Pascucci and Academy Award winner and multiple nominee Brian Grazer of Imagine Entertainment will produce with Howard. Imagine’s Michael Rosenberg and White Horse’s Guy East will serve as executive producers.

Howard said, “I am excited and honored to be working with Apple and the White Horse team on this astounding story of these four young men who stormed the world in 1964. Their impact on popular culture and the human experience cannot be exaggerated.”

This film will focus on The Beatles’ journey from the early days of the Cavern Club in Liverpool and engagements in Hamburg to their last public concert in Candlestick Park, San Francisco, in 1966.

The Beatles began touring Europe in late 1963, after an extraordinary arrival on the British scene in 1961 and ‘62.  However, it was their much-heralded Ed Sullivan appearance on February 9, 1964 that caused The Beatles’ popularity to explode. By June, the band had commenced their first world tour, and continued on a relentless schedule for two subsequent years.  By the time the band stopped touring in August of 1966, they had performed 166 concerts in 15 countries and 90 cities around the world. The cultural phenomenon their touring helped create, known as “Beatlemania,” was something the world had never seen before and laid the foundation for the globalization of culture.

Beatlemania was not just a phenomenon. It was the catalyst for a cultural shift that would alter the way people around the world viewed and consumed popular culture.  This film will seek to explain what it was about that particular moment in time that allowed this cultural pivot point to occur.  It will examine the social and political context of the time, and reveal the unique conditions that caused technology and mass communication to collide. The film will also explore the incomparable electricity between performer and audience that turned the music into a movement – a common experience into something sublime.

There’s no word on when the film will be released, but it’s said to be completely authorised by the surviving representatives of the Beatles brand – namely Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Yoko Ono and Olivia Harrison.

Expect more on this as it develops.

 

 

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