APPLE CORPS LTD. ENGAGES IMAGINE ENTERTAINMENT AND WHITE HORSE PICTURES TO PRODUCE NEW BEATLES DOCUMENTARY FEATURE FILM ABOUT THE BAND'S TOURING YEARS
RON HOWARD TO DIRECT
Los Angeles, July 16, 2014 – Apple Corps Ltd., White Horse Pictures and Imagine Entertainment have announced they will produce a new authorized documentary for Apple, based on the first part of The Beatles’ career -- the touring years. The film will be directed by Academy Award-winning director Ron Howard and will be produced with the full cooperation of Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Yoko Ono Lennon and Olivia Harrison. White Horse’s Grammy Award-winning Nigel Sinclair, Scott Pascucci and Academy Award winner and multiple nominee Brian Grazer of Imagine Entertainment will produce with Howard. Imagine’s Michael Rosenberg and White Horse’s Guy East will serve as executive producers.
Howard said, "I am excited and honored to be working with Apple and the White Horse team on this astounding story of these four young men who stormed the world in 1964. Their impact on popular culture and the human experience cannot be exaggerated."
This film will focus on The Beatles’ journey from the early days of the Cavern Club in Liverpool and engagements in Hamburg to their last public concert in Candlestick Park, San Francisco, in 1966.
The Beatles began touring Europe in late 1963, after an extraordinary arrival on the British scene in 1961 and ‘62. However, it was their much-heralded Ed Sullivan appearance on February 9, 1964 that caused The Beatles’ popularity to explode. By June, the band had commenced their first world tour, and continued on a relentless schedule for two subsequent years. By the time the band stopped touring in August of 1966, they had performed 166 concerts in 15 countries and 90 cities around the world. The cultural phenomenon their touring helped create, known as "Beatlemania," was something the world had never seen before and laid the foundation for the globalization of culture.
Beatlemania was not just a phenomenon. It was the catalyst for a cultural shift that would alter the way people around the world viewed and consumed popular culture. This film will seek to explain what it was about that particular moment in time that allowed this cultural pivot point to occur. It will examine the social and political context of the time, and reveal the unique conditions that caused technology and mass communication to collide. The film will also explore the incomparable electricity between performer and audience that turned the music into a movement – a common experience into something sublime.
Founded in London in 1968, Apple Corps Ltd. represents The Beatles. Under the direction of Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Yoko Ono Lennon and Olivia Harrison, the company administers The Beatles’ business interests, and it also develops new creative projects, making a significant contribution to the staging and safekeeping of The Beatles’ musical and cultural legacies. Jeff Jones and Jonathan Clyde will act as executive producers for Apple Corps.
Over the course of a near 30-year partnership, Howard and Grazer have produced a long list of successful and critically acclaimed films, including Apollo 13, Frost/Nixon, A Beautiful Mind – for which Howard won an Academy Award for Best Director and Grazer and Howard won Best Picture – and, most recently, Rush, and music-driven films like 8 Mile. This will be the second documentary for Howard -- the first being 2013's Made in America.
Sinclair’s long association with documentaries has resulted in a string of award-winning films, including Martin Scorsese’s George Harrison: Living in the Material World, which won two Emmy Awards and was nominated for a BAFTA, and No Direction Home: Bob Dylan, for which Sinclair won a Grammy Award, Amazing Journey: The Story of The Who, The Last Play At Shea, 1, and both the Academy Award-winning Undefeated and the Grammy Award-winning Foo Fighters: Back and Forth.
Pascucci, Managing Director of Concord Music Group and former head of Warner’s Rhino Entertainment, was an executive producer on George Harrison, and has recently been associated with Eric Clapton’s Crossroads Guitar Festival: 2013 and Jimi Hendrix: Hear My Train A Comin’.
This project was originally brought to Apple Corps by One Voice One World, which has conducted extensive research around the globe, including inviting Beatles fans to send in clips of home movies and photos that they acquired during this extraordinary period. OVOW’s Matthew White, Stuart Samuels, and Bruce Higham will form part of the production team as co-producers.
Acclaimed and award winning editor Paul Crowder will serve as editor. Crowder directed and edited the Grammy-nominated Amazing Journey: The Story of The Who, The Last Play at Shea and the Formula One documentary, 1. Crowder’s long-time collaborator, Mark Monroe, will serve as writer. In addition to the aforementioned films, Monroe’s credits include Sound City, Chasing Ice, and the Academy Award-winning, The Cove. Marc Ambrose (Bhutto) will serve as supervising producer.
Nicholas Ferrall will be the executive in charge of production for White Horse Pictures, assisted by executives Jeanne Elfant Festa and Cassidy Hartmann. The Beatles documentary is one of the first projects under Nigel Sinclair’s new White Horse Pictures banner, which he founded in 2014 with long-time business partner Guy East.
Sinclair said, "The way The Beatles burst onto the scene in Britain was an overwhelming social, cultural and musical phenomenon, but was even then eclipsed by that extraordinary explosion on the American scene and then the world. I was lucky enough to see The Beatles perform in Glasgow in 1964, shortly after their Ed Sullivan appearance. It is an honor to work on this project for The Beatles, and to be collaborating again with the extraordinary Ron Howard and Brian Grazer, and my good friend Scott Pascucci."
ABOUT APPLE CORPS LIMITED
Apple Corps Ltd. was founded by The Beatles in 1968 to oversee the band's own creative and business interests. As part of its management of The Beatles’ entire intellectual property canon, the London-based company has administered the legendary band’s recorded catalogue, with more than 800 million physical and digital albums sold to date.
Apple Corps has also piloted innovative Beatles projects which have become benchmarks for pioneering accomplishment, including the record-breaking, 30 million-selling album The Beatles 1, the universally acclaimed The Beatles Anthology series, and the GRAMMY®-winning CD, vinyl and iTunes release of The Beatles’ 13 remastered studio albums.
In Apple Corps’ first major theatrical partnership, The Beatles LOVE by Cirque du Soleil® has played to more than six million audience members since its June 2006 opening at the Mirage in Las Vegas. The Beatles’ LOVE also resulted in a double GRAMMY®-winning album and a GRAMMY®-winning feature film, All Together Now, that details the fascinating story behind the unique partnership between The Beatles and Cirque du Soleil that resulted in the creation and launch of LOVE.
And continuing the commitment to preserving the archives and legacy of The Beatles catalogue, The Beatles Help!, Yellow Submarine, and Magical Mystery Tour feature films have been digitally restored with great care for DVD, Blu-ray™ and iTunes release.
Additional information about The Beatles is available at thebeatles.com.
ABOUT IMAGINE ENTERTAINMENT
Imagine Entertainment was founded in 1986 by Ron Howard and Brian Grazer to create independently produced feature films, television programs and other original programming. Imagine Entertainment has been honored with more that 60 prestigious awards including 10 Academy Awards and 36 Emmy® awards. Past productions include the Academy Award Best Picture winner A Beautiful Mind, 8 Mile, Apollo 13, American Gangster, The Da Vinci Code, Liar, Liar, Backdraft, and Parenthood to name a few. Upcoming films include Get on Up and In The Heart of the Sea. Television productions include NBC’s Parenthood, NBC’s Friday Night Lights, Fox’s 24 and 24: Live Another Day, Fox’s and Netflix’s Arrested Development, as well as HBO's From the Earth to the Moon, for which Howard and Grazer won the Emmy® for Outstanding Mini-Series. Upcoming television productions include Fox’s Gang Related and Empire. Ron Howard and Brian Grazer began their collaboration in 1985 with the hit comedies Night Shift and Splash, and continue to run Imagine Entertainment as chairmen.
ABOUT WHITE HORSE PICTURES
WHITE HORSE PICTURES is a production company focused on high quality, commercial content creation across various different media – Film, TV, Documentaries and Digital. Based in Los Angeles, the company is built on the foundation of Nigel Sinclair and Guy East’s vast experience of producing independent movies, and takes a Millennial approach to storytelling and distribution. Sinclair and East’s previous partnerships at Intermedia and Exclusive Media resulted in dozens of successful films with top talent – The Woman in Black with Daniel Radcliffe, Snitch with Dwayne Johnson, End of Watch with Jake Gyllenhaal, Rush with Ron Howard and Chris Hemsworth, The Ides of March with George Clooney, Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, Sliding Doors, The Wedding Planner, K-Pax and The Life of David Gale.
Nigel Sinclair is a noted feature film and documentary filmmaker, having won two Grammy’s for No Direction Home: Bob Dylan and Foo Fighters: Back and Forth as well as an Emmy Award for Martin Scorsese’s George Harrison: Living In The Material World. His recent feature film credits include Ron Howard’s Golden Globe and BAFTA nominated Rush starring Chris Hemsworth and Daniel Brühl, George Clooney’s Golden Globe nominated The Ides of March starring Ryan Gosling and End of Watch starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Michael Peña.whitehorsepics.com
ATTENTION BEATLES FANS:
Were you there? Or were your parents or grandparents a part of Beatlemania?
If you or someone you know has visual or audio materials that document the Beatles' live tours, we want to hear from you! We are looking for rare or unusual footage, photographs, and audio recordings, particularly those that highlight the fan experience – what it was like to be a part of the frenzy.
If you have materials you believe belong in this film, please contact us using the form below.
We all know the moment. February 9th, 1964, 8:12pm EST – after a brief commercial break, four young men from Liverpool step onto the Ed Sullivan stage, changing culture forever.
Seventy-three million people watched The Beatles perform that night, the largest audience in television history. It was an event that united a nation and signaled the birth of youth culture as we know it today. But while this single performance introduced The Beatles to America, what the band did next would introduce them to the entire world, permanently transforming the music industry and forever engraining them into the fabric of popular culture...
They went on tour.
By the time the band quit touring in August of 1966, they had performed 166 concerts in 15 countries and 90 cities around the world. The cultural phenomenon their touring helped create, known as "Beatlemania," was something the world had never seen before and, arguably, hasn't since. It was the first time much of the world felt truly unified – bound by aspiration and attitude, rather than divided by race, class, religion or nationality.
THE BEATLES LIVE FILM PROJECT will tell the story of the band's exceptional touring years – from the perspectives of the band, its world, the fans, and their world. It will examine the impact of those years on each of The Beatles – the toll that touring took on their relationships and the effect it had on their musical evolution, as well as the colossal boost the tours gave to their lifestyle and fame. But while the band created the spark, it was young people around the world who created the firestorm. The film will also explore the incomparable electricity between performer and audience that turned the music into a movement – a common experience into something sublime.