United Artists via Everett Collection
The Beatles' influence has touched every inch of modern pop music, leaving an indelible mark on film and television... which is pretty good for four working-class mop tops from Liverpool. Director Ron Howard will be the next to immortalize the band onscreen, in a new documentary that will explore the group's early years, when they still toured their music across the globe. Surviving Beatles Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr, as well as Yoko Ono Lennon and Olivia Harrison will contribute to the feature, which will trace the band's humble beginnings at the Caven Club in Liverpool, their tours through Germany, all the way through the group's final public performance in San Francisco's Candlestick park. But before we get around to seeing Howard's tribute to the Beatles, we're inclined to look back upon some of the best musical contributions they made to movies and TV.
Bowling for ColumbineThe last half of the John Lennon-penned "Happiness Is a Warm Gun," which may or may not be about heroin, serves as the perfect soundtrack for Michael Moore's anti-gun manifesto Bowling for Columbine. It's used in a terrifying sequence that shows just how gun crazy some Americans are, and as the song ramps up, the sequence escalates to a violent and unnerving conclusion that still has us wincing all these years later.
"Baby, You're a Rich Man" in The Social NetworkWhat better way to end a biopic about one of the richest men in the universe than this cut from Magical Mystery Tour. It's so fitting, it's almost like it was made expressly to cap off David Fincher's tale of billion dollar grudges.
"You've Got to Hide Your Love Away" in HelpWe couldn't, in good faith, compile a list of the best Beatles moments in film and television without including a sequence from the Fab Four's own filmography. We chose "You've Got to Hide Your Love Away" the film Help for sheer oddness of the sequence. Plus, it's just a great song in general.
"In My Life" in Little ManhattanThe best thing about the Beatles is how timeless their music is. "In My Life," a song about losing and gaining friendships through the slippage of time, is the perfect piece of music to accompany the story about a preteen losing his first love in modern day New York.
"A Little Help From My Friends" on The Wonder YearsJohn Cocker's throaty rendition of "A Little Help from My Friends" graces the title sequence of The Wonder Years, and it may be the best cover song ever recorded. It's even better than the original Beatles tune, and it just makes The Wonder Years a better show. Nowadays, we can't even look at Fred Savage without hearing Cocker's raspy croon blasting through our heads at full volume.
"Come Together" in A Bronx TaleIn a scene from Robert De Niro's directoral debut, a pair of Italian mafiosos rough up a couple of unruly bikers that stop into their bar while "Come Together" spills out of a jukebox. Thanks to the '60s aesthetic, the song is a perfect addition to the scene.
"Hey Jude" in The Royal TenenbaumsFilmmakers like Quentin Tarantino and Martin Scorsese are often celebrated for their use of pop music in film, but Wes Anderson's musical touches in his work are just as poignant. His use of a beautifully orchestrated version of "Hey Jude" in 2001's The Royal Tenanbaums is a perfect example of this.
"Twist and Shout" in Ferris Bueller's Day OffWe're still not sure if Ferris Bueller is really a wizard, or if it was just the power of music, but the teen somehow brings the entirety of downtown Chicago to a grinding halt for the musical number to end all musical numbers.
Hollywood director Ron Howard is to shoot a new movie about The Beatles. The documentary will trace the Fab Four's career from their early days performing in their native Liverpool, England to their final official concert at Candlestick Park in San Francisco, California in 1966.
The band's surviving members, Sir Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr, are onboard as producers along with John Lennon and George Harrison's widows, Yoko Ono and Olivia Harrison.
Howard says of the project, "My 10th birthday was all about me getting a Beatle wig. While my knowledge isn't encyclopaedic, I'm a lifelong fan and I'm fascinated by what they've meant."
The film is slated to hit movie theatres in late 2015.
Ringo Starr has teamed up with fashion designer John Varvatos to raise funds for director David Lynch's transcendental meditation foundation. The former Beatles star is the face of Varvatos' 2014 Peace Rocks autumn fashion collection, and the rocker announced the news during a rally in Los Angeles on Monday (07Jul14) to mark his 74th birthday.
In a black and white promotional picture for the drive, Starr wears sunglasses and a leather jacket and pulls his trademark 'peace' sign. Each campaign snap will be accompanied by the #PeaceRocks hashtag.
Fans are encouraged to post 'selfie' snaps of themselves making the peace finger gesture on Twitter.com and every time the hashtag is used, Varvatos' company will donate $1 (£1.70) to the Ringo Starr Peace & Love Fund, which supports Lynch's foundation.
The moviemaker's charity promotes the use of transcendental meditation in public schools and for members of the military.
Starr also appears in a short film for the campaign in which he sits behind a drum kit and talks about his musical aspirations as a youngster.
The musician tells WWD.com of his new project, "John Varvatos made me a male model finally. At home, I've always been a male model. And now I'm out on the streets with it."
Moviemaker Richard Lester has opened up about his time shooting films with The Beatles in the 1960s, branding Sir Paul McCartney too enthusiastic to act. The Superman II director helmed the Fab Four's first big screen outing in A Hard Day's Night in 1964 and he went on to work with them again the following year (65) on Help!
Now he has given his verdict on the rock stars' abilities in front of camera, praising George Harrison and Ringo Starr but suggesting McCartney was wise to stick to his music career.
Lester tells NME magazine, "(Harrison) didn't try to do too much, but always hit it right in the middle. (McCartney) was so enthusiastic he perhaps tried too hard. (Lennon) had some cutting words for me at times."
The director said there were concerns among the crew when Starr was tasked to shoot a solo scene but he was delighted when the drummer played his role perfectly.
A Hard Day's Night has been digitally restored and remixed to mark its 50th anniversary, and will be re-released on DVD and Blu-ray later this month (Jul14).
Ringo Starr plans to celebrate his 74th birthday later this month (Jul14) with a huge "peace and love" rally in Los Angeles.
The Beatles legend reaches the milestone on Monday (07Jul14) and he is inviting fans to join him at the Hollywood Walk of Fame outside the Capitol Records building for a "birthday salute".
He is also asking followers to pose for photographs with the theme "peace rocks" and post the images on various social networking websites on Monday to mark the special occasion.
Love letters written by Ringo Starr have sold at auction for $26,000 (£16,250). The Beatles legend wrote the notes to a girlfriend named Doreen Speight in the 1960s when he was in his early 20s after meeting her at a Butlin's holiday camp in the U.K. before he became part of the Fab Four.
In one of the notes, Starr shares some exciting news with Speight after he was invited to join the band, writing, "I got a call asking would I join the Beatles. I said yes. I am doing very well with the new group."
Speight says of the letters, which were sold at Bonhams auction house in London on Wednesday (25Jun14), "He was Richard Starkey (Starr's real name) then and we spent the whole week together, having beach parties. Ringo would hold my hand. He was a real gentleman."
Sir Paul McCartney is ready to return to work after his shock hospitalisation last month (May14), according to his former bandmate Ringo Starr. The Beatles star axed his Asian tour in May (14) after he was admitted to a medical facility in Japan with a virus.
He was pictured looking well while celebrating his 72nd birthday in London last week (ends22Jun14) and on Sunday (22Jun14), he was spotted relaxing on the Spanish island of Ibiza with his wife Nancy Shevell.
According to Starr, McCartney is bouncing back to full fitness and is ready to get back on stage and continue his world tour.
The drummer tells Britain's Daily Mirror newspaper, "I spoke to him while he was in hospital. He said he was doing OK. Now he is getting fit and getting ready to rock."
McCartney is due to resume his Out There world tour on 5 July (14) in New York.
A number of guitars once owned by Gerry Rafferty are set to go under the hammer. The lots include a white Fender Esquire guitar, which the Scottish musician appeared with in the 1988 video for his track Shipyard Town and is believed to have once belonged to Beatles legend George Harrison.
Rafferty's instruments will go up for sale at the Bonhams auction house in London on Wednesday (25Jun14).
Bonhams representative Stephen Maycock says, "Gerry is an extremely well-known and well-loved artist who had fantastic success over a long period.
"One of the exciting aspects of this sale is that they have come directly from Gerry's personal collection. It's the perfect provenance for collectors as the object gives them a personal link back to the musician."
The Baker Street icon passed away in 2011 after suffering liver failure.
Other items going under the hammer include a dinner suit once worn by George Harrison's bandmate John Lennon and a note from Ringo Starr to a girlfriend.
Sir Paul McCartney has bounced back from his shock hospitalisation last month (May14) to celebrate his birthday with friends at a dinner in London. The Beatles legend cancelled the Asian leg of his world tour in May (14) after he was hospitalised in Japan with a virus. He flew home to London a week later to recover and was subsequently pictured looking frail and sickly.
McCartney also postponed the first dates on his U.S. tour, which was due to start in June (14), to give himself more time to rest.
However, he was pictured looking well and in high spirits when he headed for dinner at The Ivy restaurant in the British capital with his wife Nancy Shevell and a host of celebrity pals on Tuesday (17June14), the evening before his 72nd birthday.
He was joined by Ringo Starr's wife Barbara Bach, George Harrison's widow Olivia and the Eagles musicians Joe Walsh and Glenn Frey and their wives.
McCartney is scheduled to resume his Out There tour in Albany, New York on 5 July (14).
The history of iconic British rockers The Beatles is to be charted in a new TV series, according to a U.S. report. Bosses at America's NBC network have allegedly recruited The Tudors creator and producer Michael Hirst to write a new series which will tell the story of John Lennon, Sir Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr's rise to global superstardom.
The programme, which is still in the early stages of development, will see Hirst re-team with his fellow The Tudors executive producers Ben Silverman and Teri Weinberg, and NBC chairman Bob Greenblatt, who gave The Tudors the go-ahead when he ran the Showtime network, reports Deadline.com.
A modern re-telling of "The Prince and the Pauper" wherein Ringo Starr plays himself, pop star and former Beatle, and his double, the indistinguished Ognir Rats, an average guy who has absolutely nothing to do with the music business.