The Beatles Share First Clip From ‘Get Back’ Docu-Series

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A screen grab from The Beatles: Get Back

The countdown continues for the eagerly awaited docu-series, The Beatles: Get Back, which will roll out over three days during Thanksgiving weekend 2021, on Disney+. One day after director Peter Jackson shared some of his thoughts on the film, the first official clip was shared on November 12, based around rehearsals for the song “I’ve Got a Feeling.” Watch it below.

In an interview that was first published online on Nov. 11 with The New York Times, the director, who has had unprecedented access to some 60 hours of previously unseen film during the past four years, denies that his work is “a whitewash,” to paint over the long held belief that the January 1969 footage of the Beatles depicted a band in crisis.

“You see these four great friends, great musicians, who just lock in and develop these songs, and you see it all onscreen,” Jackson told interviewer Ben Sisario of the Times.

“It’s like going back in a time machine,” he says in this clip.

“Our movie doesn’t show the breaking up of the Beatles,” Jackson told the Times, “but it shows the one singular moment in history that you could possibly say was the beginning of the end.

“There’s no goodies in it, there’s no baddies,” he said. “There’s no villains, there’s no heroes. It’s just a human story.”

Watch the clip from the docu-series, released on Nov. 12

The documentary film will be presented as a three-part series, running approximately eight hours in length, exclusively on Disney+ on November 25, 26 and 27. (Part one is said to be 157 minutes and part two a whopping 173. Part three is relatively brisk at 138 minutes.) The Academy Award-winning director has spent the past four years restoring and editing the presentation. A nearly four-minute trailer, released on Oct. 13, dazzles with intimate footage from the band’s recording process as their self-imposed deadline to complete the album approaches. Watch it below.

Deluxe expanded editions of The Beatles’ Let It Be album were released on Oct. 15. The docu-series’ companion book, The Beatles: Get Back, arrived on Oct. 12.

The film offers viewers unique fly-on-the-wall perspective to the band’s songwriting process, as evidenced here in this clip about “Something.”

The surprising news that the documentary would premiere on Disney+ arrived on June 17, due to “the wealth of tremendous footage.” It replaces the theatrical release which was being planned for August 27. That premiere had itself been delayed by a year due to the pandemic.

The June 17 announcement was made by Walt Disney Studios, Apple Corps Ltd. and WingNut Films Productions Ltd.

Watch the official trailer for The Beatles: Get Back

“As a huge Beatles fan myself, I am absolutely thrilled that Disney+ will be the home for this extraordinary documentary series by the legendary filmmaker Peter Jackson,” said Bob Iger, Executive Chairman and Chairman of the Board, The Walt Disney Company. “This phenomenal collection of never-before-seen footage offers an unprecedented look at the close camaraderie, genius songwriting, and indelible impact of one of the most iconic and culturally influential bands of all time, and we can’t wait to share The Beatles: Get Back with fans around the world.”

Peter Jackson, introducing The Beatles: Get Back sneak peek

In that original announcement, Jackson said, “In many respects, Michael Lindsay-Hogg’s remarkable footage captured multiple storylines. The story of friends and of individuals. It is the story of human frailties and of a divine partnership. It is a detailed account of the creative process, with the crafting of iconic songs under pressure, set amid the social climate of early 1969. But it’s not nostalgia – it’s raw, honest, and human. Over six hours, you’ll get to know The Beatles with an intimacy that you never thought possible.”

Watch the “Learning New Numbers” clip as the song, “Get Back,” develops

The three-time Oscar®-winning filmmaker added, “I’m very grateful to The Beatles, Apple Corps and Disney for allowing me to present this story in exactly the way it should be told. I’ve been immersed in this project for nearly three years, and I’m very excited that audiences around the world will finally be able to see it.”

The Beatles during a recording session, with Billy Preston and Yoko Ono (Photo: © Apple Corps Ltd.; used with permission)

More from the announcement: The Beatles: Get Back takes audiences back in time to the band’s intimate recording sessions during a pivotal moment in music history. The documentary showcases the warmth, camaraderie and creative genius that defined the legacy of the iconic foursome, compiled from over 60 hours of unseen footage shot in January 1969 (by Michael Lindsay-Hogg) and more than 150 hours of unheard audio, all of which has been brilliantly restored. Jackson is the only person in 50 years to have been given access to these private film archives. The Beatles: Get Back is the story of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr as they plan their first live show in over two years, capturing the writing and rehearsing of 14 new songs, originally intended for release on an accompanying live album.

The docu-series also shows the prominently role that keyboardist Billy Preston played on the recordings.

Watch them rehearse “Don’t Let Me Down” with Preston

The documentary features – for the first time in its entirety – The Beatles’ last live performance as a group, the unforgettable rooftop concert on London’s Savile Row, as well as other songs and classic compositions featured on the band’s final two albums, Abbey Road and Let It Be.

Watch The Beatles: Get Back, a sneak peak from Peter Jackson

Disney announced on March 10, 2020, that it had acquired the worldwide distribution rights to the acclaimed filmmaker’s previously announced documentary. At that time, the film was planned for a Sept. 4, 2020 release in the U.S. and Canada. It is being made with “the enthusiastic support of Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Yoko Ono Lennon and Olivia Harrison.”

Related: Expanded, special editions of Let It Be were announced on Aug. 26, 2021

Ahead of the documentary’s Disney+ debut, Apple Corps Ltd./Callaway Arts & Entertainment released The Beatles: Get Back book. Beautifully designed and produced, the 240-page hardcover complements the “Get Back” documentary with transcriptions of The Beatles’ recorded conversations and hundreds of exclusive, never before published photos from the three weeks of sessions. The collectible book will be published in nine international language editions. (It’s available for order in the U.S. here and the U.K. here.)

Watch the trailer for the book

Related: Our review of The Beatles: Get Back book

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9 Comments so far

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  1. Onteo
    #1 Onteo 18 June, 2021, 04:41

    Disney? As much as I love the Beatles, that’s not happening.

    Reply this comment
  2. Gerry
    #2 Gerry 18 June, 2021, 07:38

    I’m excited about the Beatle Get Back release. However we don’t get Disney+and wouldn’t subscribe to it for this one program. Will they be releasing it in DVD. Are they also releasing CD and vinyl anniversary sets of the Let It Be album like the previous speciality sets. I have been looking forward to that release as well.Enjoy your music site. Gerry

    Reply this comment
    • tagoldich
      tagoldich 18 June, 2021, 22:14

      The good news is SIX hours of Beatles!

      The bad news is more waiting, no theatrical experience surrounded by other Beatle maniacs, maybe no tight edited version, to see it we must pay the price of subscribing to Disney, and it being in the clutches of Disney, we may never be allowed to own it.

      Also, given Disney’s involvement, a remixed version of the original Let It Be is in question (and no mention of a restored version of the original Let It Be film).

      Still, 6 hours of Beatles!.

      Reply this comment
  3. John Rose
    #3 John Rose 18 June, 2021, 12:29

    All these people griping about the show being on Disney+ make me laugh. If you were going to see it when the plan was for a theatrical release then Disney was going to get your money. Just do the 30 day trial or whatever they offer then cancel before they take your money. Easy.

    Reply this comment
    • MarkInLagunaWoods
      MarkInLagunaWoods 18 June, 2021, 16:14

      Exactly!! Those who won’t watch Disney must not like the Beatles very much!

      Reply this comment
    • Gerry
      Gerry 19 June, 2021, 00:08

      Thanks for this. I haven’t subscribed to extra channels in a while. I never thought of joining the channel for a short time or taking their 30 day free trail. I sure appreciate this. It would be sad if it didn’t come to DVD as well after the Disney release.

      Reply this comment
  4. Da Mick
    #4 Da Mick 14 October, 2021, 15:52

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Disney concocted some kind of safeguard from people doing just what’s been suggested here. They weren’t born Yesterday, and they’re not the Columbia Record Club. One way or another, they’re going to safeguard getting a return on this valuable property they’ve invested heavily in. And that’s what people are griping about: the requirement of playing ball with Disney for any period of time, when we just want this specific programming. Like many others here, I would gladly have paid the theatrical price, or a pay-per-view price to see these episodes. But a forced subscription to Disney, for any period of time, holds no interest for me.

    Our only hope is that when the market for this programming flattens out on Disney, that they’ll make it available for pay-per-view to a secondary market, to reap the total profit potential. But that will require significantly more waiting — and hearing about it in the meantime.

    Reply this comment
  5. Yazmatazz
    #5 Yazmatazz 15 November, 2021, 11:27

    What’s all the fuss about Disney? I just subscribed for a one month intro at $1.99. As long as I can prior to 12.14.21, I won’t be charged again. The regular price is now $6.99/month. Don’t know if the intro price is still valid, but why not do one month at $6.99, enjoy the show and then cancel? You were going to pay more than that in the theatre, and now you’re getting triple the run time at 6 hours. Seems like a good deal to me. Or wait for the super deluxe DVD box set to come out with all the trimmings and pay at least 100 bucks. Your choice. Bring it on! Cheers…..:)

    Reply this comment

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