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Beatles Video List

From: (edward s. chen)
Subject: Re: Beatles video list
Date: 1 Jan 1993 18:50:59 GMT
Organization: Little to none, or maybe not......
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Lines: 787

       A summary of the Beatles on video
                   by Ed Chen
                  January, 1993

While it has long been acknowledged that the Beatles were the 
progenitors today's "music video", there is much more to the band's 
music video oeuveure then simply the feature films that generally 
gather all the accolades.  Other then my "wish list" at the end, 
everything I will be discussing is (or was) released legitimately on 
video in the US and / or UK.    

At the dawn of the video age, much Beatles product such as "Around 
the Beatles", or "The Beatles in Tokyo" was commonly available from 
legitimate companies.  However, in 1980 ATV music (and later the 
RIAA) began suing  companies selling tapes that included protected 
music.  This drove most  of the companies out of business, with the 
only real challenge coming from a company in the mid-eighties selling 
"The Beatles at the Washington Coliseum", "The Beatles at Shea 
Stadium", "The Beatles in Japan", and a poor-quality "Magical Mystery 
Tour".  That New Jersey Company was not taken  to court, but most of 
their stock was seized, forcing them out of business. However, with 
the passing of time, much of the Beatles video material is making its 
way to legitimate video releases.  This is ultimately the best  for 
both the Beatles (since they obtain the royalties they are due), and 
the fans (since they get the material in the best available quality)  

Now, on to the videos themselves:  

A Hard Day's Night -- The Beatles first feature film.  A very clever 
look at the 1964 stereotypes of the Beatles, and the madness 
surrounding them. Very nice transfer, with the soundtrack remixed to 
Dolby stereo.  The CAV  laser disc (still p&s) is particularly worth 
seeking out as it includes an  interview with Richard Lester, the 
Peter Sellers short "Running, Jumping & Standing Still" (which 
inspired much of AHDN), and the original theatrical trailer.  

Help! -- The Beatles second feature film.  Suffers in comparison to 
AHDN, but still a clever, parody of the James Bond genre of action-
adventure films  that were popular at the time.  Very nice transfer, 
much cleaner then the  version aired on television throughout the 
seventies.  The CAV laser disc  includes the original theatrical 
trailer, footage from the film's premiere,  original radio spots, and 
several hundred stills from "The making of..."  

Magical Mystery Tour -- The Beatles attempt to make a television 
film, with absolutely no limits placed on them.   The result makes 
little narrative sense, but still has quite a few high points.  
Notable among them is the famous "I Am The Walrus" sequence (with the 
Beatles in full costume), and Paul's "Fool on the Hill" bit filmed in 
France.  Something every Beatles fan should see, but of lesser 
priority on the "must own" list, particularly if you can tape it 
(albeit, somewhat edited) from television. (The Disney Channel in the 

Yellow Submarine -- An animated feature, with the live action Beatles 
making an appearance briefly at the very end.  Probably the best way 
to describe the feature is "Disney was never like this".   The plot 
involves the Beatles  helping to stop a group of baddies (Blue 
Meanies) from invading a land of joy and happiness (Pepperland).   
The visuals along the way are absolutely  stunning, and the Dolby 
soundtrack is marvelous.  The transfer is very clean, and the only 
thing that would make this tape better is if a letterbox edition were 
made available.  Recently went out of print. 
Let It Be (1981) -- Long out of print, but worth seeking out when it 
gets reissued.   A nice look at the break-up of the Beatles.  The 
transfer on  the original tape is somewhat muddy, and the sound is 
mono, but hopefully both problems will be fixed in the re-release.  

The Compleat Beatles (1982) -- A reasonable enough documentary 
covering the Beatles from 1960 through 1970, but ultimately a bit 
unfulfilling.  On the plus side is some excellent narration (by 
Malcolm McDowell [of "A Clockwork Orange" fame]), and some very nice 
interview pieces (George Martin, Gerry Marsden, Billy Preston, and 
others).  On the down side is the appallingly poor video quality of 
those new interviews, the lack of rare or unique film clips, and the 
general deceptive nature of the way some of the audio / video is used 
(eg:  The Granada Cavern footage is used twice, once cut to the 
Hamburg recording of "Hippy Hippy Shake" [making it appear that the 
four are performing that song].  A clip of the Beatles in Manchester 
is implied to be the Royal  Variety Command Performance, a 1964 
airport landing in a downpour is passed off as being from 1966, 

The Beatles: Their First US Visit (1992) -- As the title implies, a 
look at the Beatles first US visit.   Included in the tape is 
excerpts from the Ed Sullivan shows, a handful of songs from the 
Washington DC concert, and a lot of footage from the short film 
"What's Happening in the U.S.A" (which covers  the plane trips, train 
trips, hotels and nightclubs inbetween).  All of this footage was 
taken directly from the masters, and some of it has been restored 
rather extensively.  As such, the material all looks and sounds much 
better than it ever had previously.  The result is an essential tape, 
covering every aspect of the Beatles first appearance on US shores.  

The Long and Winding Road -- In the works, this will become *the*
definitive video look at the Beatles.  Expected to end up being 8-10 
tapes, covering every era of the Beatles career.  

An Orchestral Tribute to the Beatles -- A video recording of the 
Royal Philharmonic performing 20 Beatles songs.   Paul is in the 
audience.   Good enough for fans who like "classical" renderings of 
Beatle material, but no real reason to own.  

The Beatles Live -- A nice look at the Beatles circa 1964.   
Originally part of a British television program called "Around the 
Beatles."  Only the "performance" pieces are presented here.  The 
name is a bit of a misnomer, as the four are miming to a pre-recorded 
soundtrack. (Particularly evident at  the beginning of "I Wanna be 
Your Man"  

Goodtimes ("Fun With the Fab Four") -- One of many tapes produced 
without permission from Apple or EMI.  This is easily the best(the 
quality is  excellent, marred only by a small white "GT" in the 
corner of the screen)   Pieces included are: the Beatles comedy skit 
from "Around the Beatles" (John and Paul as a jokey version of 
Shakespeare's Pyramus and Thisabee), and an appearance by Pete Best 
on the American game show "I've Got a Secret", and several others.  
Long out of print.  

The Rutles -- Worth mentioning as the film is supposedly very 
strongly based on the unreleased in-house (Apple) Beatles 
documentary.  Fan reaction at  places like Che stadium are actual 
footage of fans at Beatles concerts. Well loved, and not only because 
George Harrison appears in a cameo.  

Misc -- Most notable are two short films which are best labeled "home 
movies", one tape contains miscellaneous footage of McCartney trips 
taken in the years 1967 & 1968 ("The Mystery Trip"), and the other 
contains some footage from the making of "Help!"  There are several 
fictional films available, but two  particularly worth seeking out 
are "I Wanna Hold Your Hand" (Zemeckis / Gale), and "Twist and Shout" 
(foreign).  Of no use at all is a tape (out of print, and probably 
illegal after Apple's lawsuit) of a concert by the quasi-legendary 
fake-Beatles "Beatlemania".  

Paul McCartney 

Rockshow (1982) -- Six years after the concert tour, this film was 
released to video.   Most of the footage comes from Seattle, but 
other clips are also included without being obtrusive.  The resulting 
footage is a bit sterile, missing the energy evident on the "Wings 
Over America" CD -- but that problem aside, the result is worth 
viewing. It should be noted that the entire concert is not included 
on the tape ("Lady Madonna", "Blackbird", "The Long and  Winding 
Road", and "My Love" are missing).  All of this material was included  
in the theatrical release of this film.  This tape is long out of 
print, with  re-release unlikely in the near future.  

Give My Regards to Broad Street -- Paul McCartney's 1984 attempt at 
making a feature film.  It was horribly panned by reviewers and the 
media at the time of release.  In my opinion, the result is a bit 
haphazard, but not nearly as bad as others would have you believe.  
The supporting cast is  excellent, and there are some entertaining 
gags.  However, even if you hate the paper-thin plot, with judicious 
use of the fast forward button,  the result is a series of well 
produced, high quality music videos -- many including Paul and Ringo 
onscreen at the same time.  

The Paul McCartney Special (1986) -- A program originally produced 
for the  BBC, and aired on television several times in 1986.   
Originally conceived as a long-form promotional piece for "Press to 
Play", the BBC staffer (Richard Skinner) persuades Macca to talk 
about much more, including one of the more in-depth interviews about 
Wings.  All of the interview bits were done at  Abbey Road studio #2, 
leading to some reminiscing on Paul's part.  Scattered among the 
interview are some nice McCartney film rarities (including rarely 
seen promo clips / videos, concert footage from both the 1973 and 
1976 tours, and even a bit of the never released "One Hand Clapping" 
film).   A very nice package, and an absolute must for McCartney 

The Real Buddy Holly Story (1987) -- Subtitled "Paul McCartney's film 
of the life and music of Buddy Holly".  The story is mostly told by 
Buddy's friends, relatives, and colleagues; with Paul adding 
occasional narration to clarify pieces of the story.  Probably the 
best, most factual look at Holly's life. In addition to the 
narration, Paul provides a short introduction to the film (Paul in a 
television studio), and also did an interview (in a barn / hay loft) 
where he discussed Buddy's influence on the Beatles.   During this 
segment Paul plays a portion of the Beatles 1958 recording of 
"That'll Be The Day".  Essential if you have any interest in Holly, 
but still worthwhile to others because of the presence of the Beatles 
first recording.  

Rupert the Bear and the Frog Song (1987) -- Paul's cartoon, 
originally  distributed theatrically with "Give My Regards to Broad 
Street".  Rupert is a beloved British children's character that Paul 
now owns.  The short is great for young and old alike, comparable 
to some of Disney's work. Paul's  soundtrack to this short was a top 
ten hit in Europe, but never released on  these shores. Also on the 
tape are animated shorts for "Seaside Woman" (Suzy  and the Red 
Stripes, aka Linda McCartney and Wings), and "Oriental Nightfish".  

Once Upon a Video (1988) -- A Japanese tape which contains 4 
McCartney videos: "Once Upon a Long Ago", "Stranglehold", "Pretty 
Little Head", and "We All Stand Together".  Expensive for what you 
get, but neither the song, nor the video for "Once Upon a Long Ago" 
was ever released in the US.  

Put It There (1989) -- A program produced specifically for the 
purpose of promoting "Flowers in the Dirt."  This time the 
production actually achieves it's purpose.  The interview pieces are 
nice, but contain no revelations.  The real strength of this 
production lies in the performance pieces.  What we are shown is 
Macca and band in studio, actually working on the recording of some 
of the "Flowers" tracks.  Additionally, rehearsals of Beatles songs 
(such as  "Fool On the Hill", "Hello, Goodbye", and "Let It Be") for 
the then-upcoming world tour make this production a "must-own".  

Get Back (1991) -- Richard Lester's look at Paul's 1989-90 World 
Tour.  Rather then going with a straight concert film, Lester has 
chosen to cut quickly  between scenes at different shows, and other, 
relatively unrelated footage.  This effect can and does become 
distracting rather easily.  The other major  problem this tape has is 
that less then 75% of the actual concert is presented Despite the low 
retail price, this is a tape to rent rather then to own. There is 
also a Japanese videodisc which is called "Get Back Prologue", which 
contains an otherwise unreleased interview with Paul, and four songs 
from the film.  The interview is not worth the cost of the videodisc.  

Paul McCartney's Liverpool Oratorio (1992) -- The video version of 
the  "Liverpool Oratorio", originally produced for the PBS series 
"Great Performances".  A fairly straightforward look at McCartney and 
Carl Davis' work, as it debuted in Liverpool's Anglican Cathedral.  A 
visual counterpart to the CD's, and worth owning because the cast 
(Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, Willard White, Jerry Hadley, and Sally Burgess) 
and stronger vocally then the cast  which has been appearing with the 
work across the US.  McCartney shows up to take a bow after the 
Oratorio is finished, just before the closing  credits roll.  

Misc -- Among the things to be on the lookout for is the first 
"Princes's  Trust" tape, which features Paul and a cast of rock's 
elite performing favorite Beatles chestnuts like "I Saw Her Standing 
There", and "Get Back". Additionally, an appearance by Paul and Wings 
at "The Concerts for the People of Kampuchea" (which Laurence Juber 
has called "his favorite moment during his time in Wings") has been 
out on video, but is sadly out of print. Paul also provided a theme 
song (played over the closing credits) for the film "Twice In a 

John Lennon 

Interview with a Legend (1981) -- A videotape of an interview John 
Lennon and his lawyer (Leon Wildes) did for the "Tommorow" show 
(4/28/75).  As would be expected, the main topic of conversation was 
the legal troubles John was having at the time concerning his 
American residency status. Out of print. 
Imagine (aka "John and Yoko's Imagine") -- The first "video LP", this 
is actually a slightly edited version of the original film.  (A 
brief shot of a woman's breasts, and some footage of Yoko has been 
deleted).  A nice look at "scenes" of John and Yoko, their home in 
London, some marvelous surrealism, and the "budget line" price make 
this a tape to own.  

Imagine: John Lennon (aka "Andrew Solt's Imagine") -- The best 
documentary available covering the life of John Lennon.  The film is 
stunning, showing us John Lennon as he saw himself.  This 
presentation is accomplished via quotes from interviews, and much 
rare and previously unreleased footage. (The footage of John 
recording the "Imagine" LP, and his discussion with George over 
"Beatle Ed" [Paul] are worth the price of the tape by themselves.)  
There are only a few minor negative points.  The most annoying is 
that the producers have chosen to pan-and-scan over footage which was 
filmed at the proper ratio for television, but artifically extended 
for the widescreen release.  (Rather then making a "television 
master" using the original, unaltered footage)  Another minor 
annoyance is that some of George Martin's remixes (particularly the 
Dolby surround sound "Love Me Do" and "Help!") are so poor as to 
actually distract from the scenes. Additionally, two crucial pieces 
of John's life (his friendship with Stuart Sutcliffe, and his 1972 
"Lost Weekend") have been edited to an absolute minimum for time 
constraints.  However, these are minor quibbles, and this tape 
remains the single most important video for Lennon fans and admirers.  

How I Won the War (1986) -- John's one (and only) solo acting outing.  
The film carries a strong anti-war message, and features John as 
"Private Gripweed" Gripweed is a soldier in the second world war, and 
is killed at the very end of the film.  The film marks the first 
time John wore his "granny glasses" to any great extent.  Directed 
and Produced by Richard Lester, written by Patrick Ryan.  A bit 
expensive, so probably a film to rent rather then to own.  

Yoko Ono: Then and Now -- An hourlong look at John Lennon's "Better 
Half" The results are decidedly pro-Yoko, but a good portion of the 
tape is devoted to John and Yoko as a couple.  Much interesting 
footage is used, including a very effective piece where John (on "The 
Mike Douglas Show") and Yoko (in a late sixties black and white 
interview) describe their first meeting at  the Indica gallery.  Not 
for everyone, but a nice look at the dynamics of one of the most 
famous couples in show-biz history.  

Live Peace in Toronto -- The video equivalent of the "Live Peace in 
Toronto" album.  Filmmaker D.A. Pennebaker originally filmed all of 
the acts on the bill that day, but the footage was not released for 
legal reasons.  This tape includes a handful of songs from other 
artists (Jerry Lee Lewis, Chuck Berry), and the entire set from the 
Lennons and the Plastic Ono Band (here consisting of such notables 
as Klaus Voorman on bass, and Eric Clapton on Guitar).   
John Lennon Live in New York City -- The afternoon concert for 
Geraldo Rivera's "One to One" foundation, at New York's Madison 
Square Garden on August 30, 1972. The video really doesn't do Lennon 
justice.  Mediocre material from the "Sometime in NYC" album, and a 
rather sloppy band (Elephant's Memory) make for poor viewing and 
listening.  However, the show does pick up a bit when Lennon moves to 
other material such as "Instant Karma", "Cold Turkey", and the only 
Beatles number of the afternoon, "Come Together".  The cinematography 
is  average, and the lighting often puts shadows on John's face.  
However, the tape is still interesting as a historical document, and 
at the discount prices it is currently being offered for (in most 
places, the video is cheaper then  the CD) worth owning.  

Lennon (A Tribute to John Lennon) -- A filmed version of the 1990 
Liverpool concert celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of John 
Lennon's birth.  The results are decidedly mixed.  Michael Douglas' 
introductions are innocuous enough, but very forgettable.  The acts 
who played live that day and are  represented on the tape range from 
good to mediocre to poor (eg: Kylie  Minoughe abhorrent version of 
"Help!").  Worth seeing for Paul McCartney's  "P.S. Love Me Do", and 
Ringo Starr's "I Call Your Name" (with two of the Traveling Wilburys 
on guitar), but not worth purchasing.  

John & Yoko: The Bed-In -- Only available as an import.  A video 
version of a television special from 1969 named "John and Yoko have a 
message". A good documentary-type look at the couple's stay in 
Montreal's Queen Elizabeth hotel.  Among the highlights are Al 
Capp's visit to the couple's bedroom, the telephone call to Berkeley, 
and a fairly lengthy look at the recording of "Give Peace a Chance".  
For anyone interested in the era, or intrigued by the excerpt's in 
Andrew Solt's film, worth looking for.  

The John Lennon Video Collection (1992) -- it has yet to be released 
in the US on tape either.  However, the tape was released in Canada 
and Japan, so import copies in NTSC are available.  

The line-up:  

Give Peace a Chance - Bed In Footage. 

Cold Turkey - John and Yoko's original promo 

Instant Karma - John Live on "Top of the Pops" 

Power To the People - John and Yoko at a Peace March, edited with
recent News footage a la "Get Back" 

Happy Xmas / War Is Over - The Harlem Community Choir, 1992 version
with still photos of the billboard campaign. 

Mind Games - Miscellaneous John and Yoko footage. 

Whatever Gets You Through the Night - Animated versions of John's 

Number 9 Dream - More Stock Footage of J & Y 

Stand By Me, Slippin' and a Slidin' - Both from the 1971 "Old Grey 
Whistle Test" show.

Imagine - Excerpt from J & Y's Imagine film.

(Just Like) Starting Over - New Clip 

Woman, Nobody Told Me, I'm Steppin' Out, Borrowed Time, Grow Old With 
Me -- The original posthumous clips Yoko produced to promote "Milk 
and Honey" and "Double Fantasy" in the early 80's. 

Jealous Guy - The clip as released to promote Andrew Solt's "Imagine: 
John Lennon" 

Imagine (Live) - From the 1975 special, "A Salute to Sir Lew Grade"  
Watching the Wheels is played over the closing credits.  Between the  
video clips, short quotes from various Lennon interviews (mainly John 
describing the song about to be seen), and other video goodies are 
sprinkled throughout the tape.  

John & Yoko: A Love Story -- Mark McGann and Kim Miyori recreate the 
life and times of John and Yoko.  About the only way to describe 
this production is "adequate."  You never really get the feeling that 
the actor is re-creating Lennon, and the actors cast as the other 
three Beatles are very below par.  Particularly annoying is the fact 
that the soundtrack (which featured actual Lennon / Beatles material 
when the film was aired on NBC) has been replaced by a cheezy Lennon 
(sort of) sound-alike.  Thankfully, this has been superceded as the 
"official Lennon video biography" by Andrew Solt's documentary. 
George Harrison 

The Concert for BanglaDesh -- Recently reissued in true stereo, this 
tape contains the complete film as released to theatres.  The footage 
used were  highlights from the two shows, as personally chosen by 
George.  A very nice look at this precursor to "Live Aid", and a 
portion of the proceeds from the sales of this tape still go to help 
the starving in Africa.  

A Rockabilly Session: Carly Perkins and Friends -- George, Ringo and 
many  others were a big part of this special celebrating the life and 
times of one of rock's pioneers.  Unlike Paul's Buddy Holly tribute, 
Perkins' career is celebrated by playing his music.  Essential for 
both Perkins and Harrison fans, because this special really marked 
George's return to public life after several years spent gardening 
and nurturing a film company.  

Handmade Films -- George's production company, which has produced 
many films, some with direct involvement from Mr. Harrison.  Two 
films particularly worth seeking out are; "Water" (starring Michael 
Caine) which includes a concert sequence with George, Ringo, Eric 
Clapton and Others; and "Shanghai Surprise" (starring Madonna and 
Sean Penn), which includes some otherwise unreleased music from 

Misc -- The Second Annual Prince's Concert features George and Ringo, 
and is definitely worth looking for.  The Wonderful film "Time 
Bandits" features a different version of the George Harrison song 
"Dream Away" then the one  which appears on "Gone Troppo".  
"Wonderwall" features a George Harrison soundtrack, but is a very 
poor film.  Save your money, and buy the CD.  

Ringo Starr 

The Magic Christian -- A 1969 film, with a cameo by John and Yoko, 
and a theme song ("Come and Get It", performed by Badfinger) by Paul 
McCartney.   Despite  the presence of members of the Goon Show 
(Ringo's co-star is Peter Sellers), and members of Monty Python, the 
story is only moderately funny.  Starr plays an orphan adopted by Sir 
Guy Grand, the world's richest man (played by Sellers) and they 
proceed to spend the rest of the film showing that money does indeed 
make the world go 'round.  Produced by Dennis O'Dell, and directed by 
Joseph McGrath.  

200 Motels -- A 1971 film where Ringo plays the dual roles of Larry 
the Dwarf, and Frank Zappa (!).  The film has no real plot, and was 
very much an exercise in acid and self-indulgence (in that order) on 
the part of Frank Zappa. Written by Zappa, directed by Tony Palmer, 
and co-produced by Jerry Good and Herb Cohen Out of print, but has 
previously been released by several companies, and easily rented from 
most better video stores.  

Son of Dracula -- A 1974 rock / horror film starring Ringo's pal 
Harry Nillson. Ringo appears as Merlin the Magician.  The film 
disappeared from theatres quite quickly.  The video release was not 
by a major company (but was legitimate).  However, the run was rather 
limited and the tape is long out of print.  Good luck in finding a 

That'll Be the Day -- Arguably, Ringo's finest acting performance.   
He appears with David Essex and Keith Moon in this story of a young 
man's induction into the world of Rock and Roll in the late 1950's.  
It is worth noting that the  sequel featured the young man's band 
making it big, and was loosely based upon Beatlemania.  However, 
Starr does not appear in that film.  

Caveman -- A bit of slapstick from our man Ringo.  Probably the only 
film which sustains a story using only a handful of real words.  
Amusing, but not overtly funny.  Notable for being the place where 
Ringo met his current wife, Barbara Bach.  Rent it if you want a no-
brainer, and all the "Three Stooges" films are out.  

The Point (1986) -- A cute fable written, produced, and directed by 
Ringo's pal Harry Nillson.  The story involves a round-headed child 
who is banished from his home (the land of "Point") because he does 
not have a point on his head.  Ringo plays much the same role here 
that Peter Falk did in "The Princess Bride"; storyteller to an 
obstinate child.  Be sure to check the tape before you purchase it.  
A second video of the same story, (produced by a different company) 
narrated by Alan Thicke is also available on video.  

Ringo Starr and the All-Starr Band (1990) -- The concert film of 
Ringo's first tour with the All-Starr band in 1989.  The show filmed 
was at the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles, and Zak Starkey (member of 
the second RASB) makes a special appearance as "guest drummer".  The 
entire performance is not presented, but much more is here then the 
box indicates.  (The box copied the song list from the severely 
truncated CD of the tour) Available on both videodisc, and tape.  
Thomas the Tank Engine and Friends (several tapes) -- Ringo has 
gained many young fans as the jovial "Mr. Conductor" on the PBS 
program Shining Time Station.  An integral part of that program was 
Ringo reading stories about a train named Thomas, and Thomas' magical 
world.  These stories, complete with "live-action animation" (stop 
motion photography), and Ringo's narration have been released on a 
series of videotapes (5 tapes, 8-10 stories per tape). 
Misc -- Elbert's Bad Word -- A part of Shelly Duvall's "Bedtime 
Stories" series.  Much like the Thomas series, the tape consists of 
Ringo narrating a story.  High production values, and worth seeing, 
particularly if you have children about.  
Curly Sue, King Ralph -- Neither of these are worth owning for the
films themselves.  However, Ringo did record an otherwise unreleased
song (played over the closing credits) for "CS", and he plays drums 
for Little Richard on a new version of "Good Golly, Miss Molly"
recorded for "KR"  

My personal video wish list 

Probably first on my wish list is a compilation of the promo films 
taken from the masters.   Although they may appear throughout the 
"Long and Winding Road" video series, a single tape consisting of 
just the promos would be my biggest wish for the moment.  A fairly 
comprehensive tape was released in Japan under the name "The Private 
An astonishing fact found in Lewisohn's _Chronology_ is that the boys 
filmed *ten* promos [3 "We Can Work It Out", 3 "Day Tripper", 1 
"Help", 1 "Ticket to Ride", and 2 "I Feel Fine"] on the evening of 
Tuesday, November 23, 1965.  

A summary of the Beatles promo films:  Promos the Beatles were 
involved in:  

You Can't Do That:  An outtake from the concert segment of "A Hard 
Day's Night".  First shown on the Ed Sullivan show, with a brief 
interview of the fabs by Sullivan. 

I Feel Fine: Two promos                     
1) John, Paul, and George wearing turtlenecks, while Ringo rides an 
exercise bicycle.
2) Clips of the Beatles backstage and in dressing rooms.  

(A third promo, consisting of the Beatles on the set of #1, eating 
newspaper wrapped fish and chips was produced, but never 

Help!: Two promos                     
1) The Beatles "performance" seen at the beginning of the movie 
(minus Clang and his darts)
2) The Beatles sitting on a sawhorse.  John, Paul and George hold 
instruments, while Ringo holds an umbrella to shield them from "snow" 
(actually confetti)  

Ticket to Ride: The Beatles in turtleneck sweaters, and overcoats.
Ringo stands behind, obviously disinterested in miming his drum part.  
Train ticket blowup used as backdrop.

Day Tripper: Four promos
1) The Beatles wearing Shea stadium jackets and turtlenecks. Train 
and plane facades used as backdrop, Ringo saws out part of the train 
2) From "The Music of Lennon and McCartney".  The Beatles dressed in 
suits and ties, miming on the backdrop of a                        
construction site.
3,4) These two are very similar.  The differences are mainly in 
Ringo's actions at the beginning and end of the clips.  The four are 
dressed in suits and ties, and in the standard three guitar / drums 

We Can Work it Out: Four Promos
1) From "The Music of Lennon and McCartney".  Turtleneck sweaters and 
jackets.  John plays organ, and spends much of the clip giving the 
camera sideways glances.
2) The Beatles in Shea jackets, and John spends much of the clip 
openly laughing and grinning at the camera.
3) The Beatles in suits and ties.   John spends much of the clip 
doing nothing unusual.
4) Similar to #3, but the clip begins with a still of John with a 
sunflower over his eye.  

Paperback Writer:  Three Promos
1) All four Beatles wearing colored "granny glasses".  John, Paul -
colorful shirts, George - jacket, Ringo - coat and tie.
2) John - sunglasses.  (the others are not wearing glasses), Paul - coat
and tie, George - white shirt and vest.  Both are clips of the Beatles
sitting in and around a studio set.
3) The Beatles walking around trees and statues at Cheswick House.

Rain: Three promos
1) John - sunglasses. Same clothes as PW #1, but John and Paul are 
wearing jackets.
2) same clothes as PW #2
3) Cheswick House, but inside the walled garden and conservatory, 
rather then in the statue garden.  (a special introduction was filmed 
for Ed Sullivan, with Ringo introducing  both PW#1, and Rain#1)  

SFF: The same clip was issued in both color and B & W.  The most 
common of their promos, excerpted in "The Complete Beatles".  Mainly 
the Beatles playing in a tree, and with an old piano.

Penny Lane: The same clip was issued in both color and B & W.  Scenes 
of Penny Lane in Liverpool, the Beatles riding white horses, and 
being served tea.  

A Day in the Life: Surreal clip, consists of the Beatles and friends 
in the studio filming the song.   Most of this clip was seen in 
"Imagine: John Lennon", but new footage was edited in fo  the clip's 
appearance there.  

Hello Goodbye: Three Promos
1) Pepper costumes, with occasional shots of them in their             
collarless suits.  (The moustaches looking quite out of place) Hula 
girls appear at the end.
2) Similar to #1, but Beatles in regular clothes.
3) Bits culled from #1 and #2, with new footage of the Beatles 
dancing to the tune.  (John does the twist)

Lady Madonna: The Beatles in the studio.  The footage used is 
actually hem recording "Hey Bulldog"

Hey Jude: Two Promos
Both involve the Beatles singing live over the record, and being 
joined by a crowd for the "na na na's".  Slightly different shots in 
the two promos.  

Revolution: Two versions.  Basic performance clip. The Beatles
actually recorded a new version of the song for this clip. (once 
again, the difference between the two versions is  in shots and 
camera angles)  

Get Back: The second rooftop performance of "Get Back". 
Don't Let Me Down: Taken from the rooftop performance footage.

The Ballad of John and Yoko:  Mainly miscellaneous footage of John 
and Yoko, their wedding, and honeymoon cut to the music.

Something:  Footage of the Beatles and their wives walking around 
John's Ascot house, and George's home in Esher.

Let It Be:  Fairly different from the version in the film, with many
different angles, and much more footage of John, George, and

Two Of Us:  Taken directly from "Let It Be" 


EMI created videos:

Back in the USSR: Created in Japan, consists mostly of plane shots, 
and Beatles airport arrivals / departures.

The Beatles Movie Medley:  Excerpts from the Beatles films, and the  
"Our World" footage of "All You Need is Love"

Love Me Do: Two slightly different videos, from the library of Ron

Please Please Me:  Mostly the 1964 Washington DC footage, but with 
inserts over the main video.   The audio is the standard studio 

I Want to Hold Your Hand: Much the same format as the "Love Me Do", 
and "Please Please Me" clips.

As mentioned, "videos" were also created for many of the songs in "A 
Hard Days Night", and "Help!"  These are not detailed, as they 
consist only of butchered footage from the two features. 


Second is an assortment of projects which would work quite nicely on 
video. Since most, if not all of these projects were aired on 
television, there are copies floating around Beatles video trading 

The Early Beatles -- (1982) A special put together by Granada 
television, covering the years 1962 to 1965.  While ideally, *all* 
the various  performances the Beatles made for British television 
will make their way to video, this (or perhaps an extended version of 
this special) would be a much more realistic expectation.  Included 
is the complete "Some Other Guy" footage, the complete taping from 
November 25, 1963 ("I Want to Hold Your Hand" "This Boy" + interview 
footage with comedian Ken Dodd), and the complete "We Can Work It 
Out" promo (from "The Music of Lennon and McCartney).  Also included 
is miscellaneous other interview footage, and more excerpts from  the 
Maysalls "What's Happening in the USA" film.

"Concerts" tape -- Several Beatles concerts were filmed in their 
entirety. The ones which have been commonly distributed are:  
Washington (1964), Shea Stadium (1965), and Tokyo (two shows - 
1966).  Highlights from these four shows, along with clips from some 
of the less well known pro-shot concerts [eg: France (1965), Germany 
(1966)] would make a nice retrospective of the touring years, and the 
subsequent effect Beatlemania had on the Fabs.

It Was 20 Years Ago Today... -- Produced by ATV, and aired in the US 
on "PBS", and "The Discovery Channel".  This special uses Sgt. Pepper 
as a launching point for a fairly in-depth examination of the year 
1967, and the forces that served to shape that year.  Paul, George, 
and Ringo were interviewed at length, and Derek Taylor was an 
executive producer of the special, as well as being author of the 
companion book.

The Making of Sgt. Pepper (1992) -- A special produced to commemorate 
the 25th anniversary of what is often described as "The Beatles 
masterpiece". Covers every aspect of the making of the album, 
including George Martin playing never before heard demos, and 
discussing musical details in-depth. A bit weak when discussing the 
social aspects of the era (particularly the neutered Disney Channel 
version), but this is by far the best look at how the Beatles created 
music together.

John Lennon: One to One -- The afternoon performance of this series 
of  two concerts is available on "Live in NYC".  While a release of 
the evening concert (which was aired as a special on American TV) 
might be a bit redundant, it would still be much appreciated.  The 
performance is better (Elephant's Memory guitarist Wayne Gabriel 
describes it as "hotter"), the presence of short interviews, and the 
more interesting camera work would make for a better  overall video.

Candy -- Ringo's 1968 acting debut apart from the Beatles.  Ringo 
plays a Mexican gardener, and had his hair dyed black for the part.  
The film follows the book, and is very sexual in nature (so, it would 
probably do quite well on video).  The director was Christian 
Marquand, and the producer was Robert Haggles.

Princess Daisy -- A decidedly lackluster TV miniseries that starred 
Mr. and  Mrs. Starkey.  While by no means essential, it would be a 
good release for  those who want to document all of Ringo's major 
acting roles.

Ringo (aka "The Ognir Rrats Show") -- George and Ringo worked 
together on this 1978 television special.  A loose re-telling of the 
classic "The Prince and the Pauper" (as George says at the end of the 
program "Who Do you Think I am? Mark Twain?") with Ringo playing a 
show-bizzy version of himself, and a "nerd" version of himself named 
Ognir Rrats (Ringo Starr spelled backwards).  The supporting cast 
included such luminaries as John Ritter, Art Carney, Angie  
Dickinson, and Carrie Fisher.  

James Paul McCartney (1973) -- An hourlong special aired on 
television both in the US, and in England.   Features concert pieces, 
comedy sequences, a family singalong in Liverpool (including some 
nice footage of Paul and James McCartney, Sr.), and an elaborate 
song and dance routine.  It is interesting to note that that routine 
("Gotta Sing, Gotta Dance") was originally to feature Paul in drag, 
but was changed after complaints from  the American sponsors.

The Sound of One Hand Clapping (1974) --  A Behind-the-scenes look at 
the recording of the "Venus and Mars" LP.  Directed by David 
Litchfield, and filmed in Abbey Road studios (not Nashville, as 
previous reports indicated), this tape contains Macca and Wings 
working on 15 different songs (including the heretofore unreleased 
"Suicide") with some studio chat between songs. For me, the best 
moment is Paul calling out the chords to "Bluebird" while the sax 
player works on the solo.  The special exists, complete with opening 
and  closing credits, yet remains unreleased.   The only logical 
reason the special may have been relegated to the vaults is that 
drummer Geoff Briton (prominent on the tape) left Wings before "Venus 
and Mars" was released.

The Bruce McMouse Show -- A special Paul had in the works during his 
1973  tour.  The idea was to have footage of Paul and Wings from said 
tour joined with a secondary plot involving a cartoon mouse family 
(Bruce, Yvonne, Soily, Swooney and Swat) living on the tour bus.  It 
is unknown how much of the animation was completed, but extensive 
filming (excerpted in "The Paul  McCartney special) of the band 
during that tour exists in the vault, and could probably be released.

Wings Over the World -- This television special also covered 
McCartney's  1976 world tour.  But, unlike "Rockshow" this special 
covers the entire tour, and you get a sense of what it's like for the 
band to be shuffled from place to place, only what touring is like 
for them.

Paul McCartney: Coming Home -- A Disney Channel special covering Paul 
in Rio, and his triumphant return home to Liverpool.  Better concert 
sequences then in "Get Back", and a very emotional performance of the 
"Lennon medley".

Oratorio Documentary -- An hourlong documentary covering Liverpool, 
and Paul McCartney's (and Carl Davis') preparations for the world 
premiere of the "Liverpool Oratorio".   Aired as part of the "Great 
Performances" package, but not part of the Oratorio videotape.   If 
the rights could be worked out, this combined with the "Coming Home" 
footage would make an excellent  two-hour video.

The Paul McCartney Video Collection (2 tapes) -- Paul has produced an 
enormous number of videos (approx. 50) for virtually every project 
since the breakup  of the Beatles.  Most of these (specifically the 
pre-"Coming Up" clips) have been sitting in the vaults, collecting 
dust.  A two-tape collection,  particularly if Paul were to film new 
introductions for the clips would be  a godsend for Macca fans 

The George Harrison Video Collection -- While not making a vast 
number of promo films / videos (though certainly more then John)  
George has easily made enough to fill up a single tape.  With only a 
little work, and perhaps some linking bits featuring George with his 
Monty Python pals, the results would be very interesting indeed.

"48 Hours with Paul McCartney" (90 minute version) -- Produced by Dan 
Rather for the CBS news / information series.  A very nice "behind-
the-scenes" look from the first US leg of McCartney's 1989-90 world 
tour.  Included is an interesting interview with the McCartneys, a 
look at the tour crew and what was involved in preparing the stage, 
and a humorous look at ticket scalping  ("McCartney's crowd is just 
too damn OLD!") The only weak segment is a look at Chicago fan Joy 
Waugh, and her preparations for the show, and subsequent attempts to 
meet Macca.  CBS does sell old episodes of "48 Hours" on video tape, 
but it is unknown whether this is available from them or not.

"Unplugged" -- Paul McCartney appeared on this MTV production after 
the  end of his 1989-1990 world tour.  The resulting album sold in 
quite  respectable numbers.  A special, particularly one containing 
the entire  program filmed that evening would be very much 

The Birth of the Beatles -- Not a terribly deep film, but worth a 
video run for the production quality (filmed on location throughout 
England, Germany, and other places), and because Pete Best was the 
"historical advisor". (Which, incidentally, he didn't do a very good 
job with.)  Reasonably good viewing, but suffers from the tv-movie 
problem of condensing weeks of real time into a single evening, and 
changing the order of events for dramatic reasons.

Saturday Night Live -- Not counting the Rutles appearances, there are 
three episodes of the NBC late night comedy show that would appeal to 
Beatlefans. The first is George Harrison's appearance as the "Special 
Musical Guest" when Paul Simon hosted the show.  In addition to the 
musical performance by the two, George's "Crackerbox Palace" promo 
was shown. The second is a 1980 show where Paul made a special 
appearance with Father Guido Sarducci.  In addition to a very funny 
interview between the two, Macca's "Coming Up" promo is shown.   The 
third, and final SNL with strong Beatle ties is the show from the 
early-80's, with Ringo Starr hosting the program.

And then, finally, I would like to see the Beatles cartoons released 
on video. The entire run could fit on ten "kid-priced" ($9.99 or 
less) tapes. 


Other then personal opinion, and my very own Beatles video library, I 
did use some printed resources.  These include:

Beatlefan Magazine (1980 - present)
The Beatles Monthly Book
Good Day Sunshine
_The Beatles A-Z_ 
_The Beatles: The Ultimate Recording Guide_ 
_The Complete Beatles Chronology_ 

The latter is particularly recommended for a detailed look at the 
Beatles' television appearances, and film projects.


Something in the way she moves, attracts me like a pomegranate. 
                              -- George Harrison  

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