Streaming service Disney+ is slating The Beatles: Get Back, the much anticipated docuseries on the iconic band from director Peter Jackson, for the American Thanksgiving holidays.
The series, created out of more than 60 hours of previously unseen footage and more than 150 hours of unheard audio culled from the 1969 studio sessions in which the band workshopped material for its final two albums (Abbey Road and Let It Be), will air over three, two-hour episodes on November 25, 26 and 27.
The footage, shot by Michael Lindsay-Hogg for a documentary that was originally released in 1970, also titled Let It Be, captures John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr as they plan their first live show in over two years. It also chronicles the writing and rehearsing of 14 new songs originally intended for release on an accompanying live album, which was to be titled Get Back.
Jackson’s project also features, for the first time in its entirety, The Beatles’ last live performance as a group, the famous rooftop concert held atop the band’s Apple Corps headquarters on London’s Savile Row.
Jackson, director of features such as the Lord of the Rings trilogy and the 2018 film They Shall Not Grow Old — which similarly featured meticulously restored archive material to examine World War I — was the first filmmaker in 50 years to be given access to The Beatles’ private archive.
When Walt Disney Studios’ involvement in the project was first announced in March 2020, it was penciled in for a theatrical release for September 4 of the same year. Last June, it was pushed ahead to August 2021.
“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 for The Walt Disney Company, in a statement.
“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.”
“In many respects, Michael Lindsay-Hogg’s remarkable footage captured multiple storylines,” added Jackson.
“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.”
The Beatles: Get Back is produced by Clare Olssen and Jonathan Clyde, with Ken Kamins and Apple Corps’ Jeff Jones serving as executive producers. Jabez Olssen serves as editor, with the music mixed by Giles Martin, son of The Beatles’ longtime producer George Martin, and Sam Okell.