'The Beatles: Get Back' was a labor of love for Peter Jackson, who spent 4 years editing docuseries

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Friday, November 26, 2021
'The Beatles: Get Back' was a labor of love for director Peter Jackson
"The Beatles: Get Back" was a labor of love for director Peter Jackson, who spent four years editing the new three-part docuseries.

Director Peter Jackson, who brought us "The Lord Of The Rings trilogy, and later "The Hobbit" trilogy, is back with work in three parts.

This time, though, it's for the small screen. It's a new docuseries called "The Beatles: Get Back." It goes way back to recording sessions from January 1969. The docuseries gives you an inside look at the band's creative process.

You see the Beatles working to write and record a new album of 14 songs in less than three weeks. The plan is to film their first live concert in almost three years.

A film crew was given unprecedented access to document The Beatles at work, shooting more than 57 hours of material along the way. Then, all that unseen footage film was just locked away.

"The fact that The Beatles deliberately put this in a vault for 50 years makes it even more amazing because, you know, as a Beatles fan, I think you've seen everything that there is to see with The Beatles," said Jackson. "How could there possibly be anything else left? And suddenly, seemingly out of nowhere, the most incredible Beatles footage ever just suddenly comes at you.

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You may feel like a fly on the wall as you watch things evolve as the days pass by. Jackson agrees with that analogy.

"I feel the same way," he said. "Hey, I'm a big Beatles fan. I still can't believe that this footage exists."

Jackson became the only person granted access to all this film. He was excited to maybe do something with it but he was also nervous because music history had long ago reported a hostile work environment back then for the Beatles.

"I watched it all with a sense of dread," he said. "And, look, honestly, if it was what the books described, I wouldn't have made the movie. I don't want to make a movie about The Beatles arguing with each other. But I wanted to see it because nobody had seen it in 50 years so I wasn't going to say 'no.' But when I finished watching it, I was 110% on board with doing something with the footage."

Jackson said he made sure everything he found fascinating made it into the final product.

"I was very much aware that anything that I don't use, anything I don't put in the movie, may disappear back into the vault for another 50 years," he said.

Making this was a labor of love -- and a labor. Jackson spent four years editing this project.

"I've never been editing a movie for that long," he said, "but it's the Beatles. If I had to edit it for eight years, I'd be happy!"

"The Beatles: Get Back" is streaming now on Disney+.