a recovered treasure for Beatles fans

a recovered treasure for Beatles fans
a recovered treasure for Beatles fans

The Beatles’ legacy is a bottomless pit that continues to surprise and delight generations of fans around the world. Just when you think you have reached the limit of what can be discovered about this iconic Liverpool band, a new gem from the past emerges to remind you that their influence is eternal. This time, the news comes in the form of a cinematic rescue: the restoration of ‘Let It Be’, the 1970 documentary directed by Michael Lindsay-Hogg, which premieres on Disney+ on May 8 and is directed by filmmaker Peter Jackson.

This documentary captures the recording sessions for the band’s latest album, also titled ‘Let It Be’. Released just weeks after the Beatles officially announced their breakup, none of the band members attended its premiere in 1970. ‘Let It Be’ has since become a little-seen rarity portraying the group’s disintegration. , with scenes of internal conflicts and arguments along with the frenetic activity of their recording process. «What you see in the film is that the affection is eternal between the four of them. But they were living very separate lives. I didn’t think the Beatles were going to break up until they broke up,” Lindsay-Hogg, 83, said in an interview with the New York Times.

What makes this announcement even more exciting is that ‘Let It Be’ served as the starting point for the ‘The Beatles: Get Back’ miniseries, released by Peter Jackson in 2021 and which was a success. This epic series was crafted from nearly 60 hours of behind-the-scenes footage originally filmed for Lindsay-Hogg’s documentary. Now, Jackson has applied the same technology used in ‘Get Back’ to restore the vintage footage of ‘Let It Be’.

For decades, ‘Let It Be’ was not available in any official form, although low-quality versions circulated among fans on VHS copies. In this context, Jackson expressed his excitement about the restoration of the film, stating that he always considered ‘Let It Be’ to be necessary to complete the story of ‘Get Back’. For him, both projects form “an epic story,” and the restoration work seeks to give Lindsay-Hogg’s film the quality it deserves, even improving its look and sound compared to the version from more than half a century ago. «Now I think of everything as an epic story completed after five decades. The two projects support and complement each other: ‘Let It Be’ is the climax of ‘Get Back’, while the latter provides vital context that is missing for ‘Let It Be.'”

Back to the 60s

The announcement of the restoration of ‘Let It Be’ comes at a busy time for Beatles fans. Recently, James McCartney and Sean Ono Lennon, sons of Paul McCartney and John Lennon respectively, released a song titled ‘Primrose Hill’. Ringo Starr also released a new single called ‘February Sky’ on the same day. And furthermore, in February, Sam Mendes announced that he will direct four films centered on each of the Beatles, scheduled for release in three years.

The film, which will be released at the same time around the world, promises to take viewers back to 1969, immersing them in the recording sessions for the ‘Let It Be’ album at the legendary Apple Corps rooftop concert in London, which marked the band’s last live performance.

With the full support of Lindsay-Hogg, Apple Corps commissioned Peter Jackson’s company, Park Road Post Production, to meticulously restore the film from the original 16mm negative, using the same technology that was applied in the series’ Get Back’. Additionally, new never-before-seen footage has been included, shedding new light on this crucial chapter in the Liverpool Four’s story.

For many fans, the restoration of ‘Let It Be’ represents more than the recovery of a historical document; It is the opportunity to relive the magic and creativity of one of the most influential bands of all time, whose legacy continues to resonate with each new generation.

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