At yesterday’s global premiere of the IMAX presentation of The Beatles Get Back: The Rooftop Concert (attended by SDE in London), director Peter Jackson revealed that he would love to offer an extended cut of the full Get Back documentary that would add three to four hours of footage, including full length performance clips and “important conversations” that deserve to be heard.
He urged fans to petition Disney and Apple Corps, if this is something they would like to see, since he indicated that Disney may be reluctant to allow him to do this.
Jackson also revealed that, as part of the research for his editing process, he and his team interviewed as many people as they could, who were there at the time, so he could understand “the truth” of the events that took place, including during the famous Rooftop Concert sequence. He told the audience that he thought if they were going to interview all these people, they may as well film them “for posterity”. In yesterday’s live interview with Jackson, which was broadcast around the world to various IMAX cinemas, he showed a clip of the infamous PC Ray Dagg (the policeman who tried to stop the concert) being interviewed on the top of 3 Savile Row, which would have taken place a few years ago. Peter said that if/when Michael Lindsay-Hogg’s original Let It Be was issued on DVD or blu-ray, he hoped such interviews might form part of the bonus material.
Other points of interest that came out of the interview:
- ALL Let It Be filmed footage has been restored and handed back to Apple for future use, not just what Jackson needed for his documentary.
- He said that the isolated audio feed from the vox pop interviews on the street confirmed that The Beatles were indeed very loud, contrary to opinions which thought their equipment/amps would not have made such a racket. People had to “speak up” to be heard over the noise
- Peter offered much praise to original director Michael Lindsay-Hogg for his direction and for the impressive 10-camera set-up for the rooftop concert, although he jokingly pointed out that the hidden camera in the reception area of 3 Savile Row was the “worst hidden camera ever” since it was hidden in a big white “garden shed” and was rather obvious (there’s a few shots of it in the documentary).
- Lindsay-Hogg was “herding cats” much of the time and Jackson was impressed by his patience, saying that he would have read the “riot act” to The Beatles a few times if he’d been the director. Jackson also expressed incredulity that any grand concert event could have been organised in time (as is talked about constantly during the Get Back doc) because while he has “hundreds of people” helping him on set when he makes films, Lindsay-Hogg appeared to have a team of “two people”.
- Jackson made the point that The Beatles we see performing up on the rooftop are the Fab Four from the Cavern Club and Hamburg rather than the group filmed at Shea Stadium, for example. Like the early days in Liverpool, this was a lunchtime performance and indeed, John Lennon jokes a few times about taking requests, which is something they used to do at the Cavern.
SDE can confirm that this special one-hour ‘Rooftop Concert’ (not ‘Rooftop Performance’, as the audio stream is branded) is identical to what is in the full Get Back documentary. It is not a special re-edit. All the interviews with people are still in the cut. It does start with the intro at the very beginning of Get Back – which gives you the potted history of The Beatles – and then cuts to the activity on 30 January 1969. The post-Rooftop footage remains (i.e. listening to playback and recording bits of ‘Two of Us’, ‘The Long and Winding Road’ and ‘Let It Be’).
Would you like to win a Get Back: The Rooftop Concert IMAX lanyard and poster? These were given away to people who attended the IMAX screenings yesterday and Mrs Sinclair has kindly donated hers for this SDE competition! The posters measure around 16″ x 11″ and are on decent quality card. We will find a tube to put it in! Simply enter below – good luck!
This competition has now closed. The winner has been announced here.