Peter Jackson’s eagerly awaited The Beatles: Get Back, a new documentary on the band during its final year, will be released in theaters by Disney on September 4.
Culled from 55 hours of footage shot in early 1969, as the Beatles were recording what would become Let It Be, the film includes never-before-seen footage and audio from those sessions, including behind-the-scenes clips from the band’s legendary 1969 rooftop concert in London. The movie is, Jackson said last year, “the ultimate ‘fly on the wall’ experience that Beatles fans have long dreamt about — it’s like a time machine transports us back to 1969, and we get to sit in the studio watching these four friends make great music together.”
Get Back also aims to elaborate on the original Let It Be movie, released in 1970 and taken from the same recording sessions. That film amounted to a cinéma vérité document of the Beatles’ fragmentation. Ringo Starr is said to be pleased with the new movie, recently telling a friend that he appreciated that it didn’t make it seem as if the band was fighting all the time during that period. “He said, ‘It was just not true,’” says a source.
“There were hours and hours of us just laughing and playing music, not at all like the version that came out,” he said in a release. “There was a lot of joy and I think Peter will show that. I think this version will be a lot more peace and loving, like we really were.”
Speaking with Rolling Stone last week, Dhani Harrison, George’s son, said he had recently attended a screening of the movie and was overwhelmed, comparing it to the way Jackson treated vintage World War I footage in his film They Shall Not Grow Old. “It’s so ridiculously amazing looking — I could see John Lennon’s fillings,” Harrison said. “I emailed Peter yesterday and said, ‘This is one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen.’”