Am I correct in assuming some of the photos apparently came from the interview subjects’ personal collections?
Well, what’s amazing—just to go back to Steve Kipner—I had done his piece [for the film]. He then sends me a photograph with a note saying, “I’m not sure if you’ll need this.” He had a photograph of Maurice Gibb and Lulu with himself and his partner. I’m thinking, “Now that tethers us to the story, it grounds us.” So I had [the segment] already edited, but sometimes the interview subject had things that they dug up me. It was really great. I really tried to match the photographs to what the subject was talking about.
What about that great piece of video footage with John Lennon doing a weather broadcast live on a Philadelphia TV station in the ‘70s?
Larry Kane had that. When I interviewed him, I was just interested in his story, but he had the footage to go with it. It was such an incredible story.
A few of these stories will be fairly well known to many Beatles fans, but most of them haven’t really been heard.
Even if you have heard them, one of the reasons I included some of them is that you might not have seen them being told. If somebody told me a story, like, “John and Paul used to cut school and write songs together in the beginning,” that’s so Beatles 101, I would’ve never included it. So many times, interviewees told me things like, “I remember when ‘Hey Jude’ came out and it changed radio because it was the first record that was longer than seven minutes.” I would not include things like that. I always had, in my head, a friend of mine who knows every single thing there is to know about the Beatles. I thought to myself, “I want this movie to appeal to him too.” But at the same time, I had in my mind the casual Beatle fan.
In my opinion, that’s one of the areas in which you really succeeded.
Well, you might know that Brian Wilson listened to Rubber Soul and it led him to create Pet Sounds. But have you ever seen his excitement when he tells the story? I’m not out to change the world. There are moments you might not have heard before. But I’m not advertising it as, “Oh my God, never before heard! This is going to shake up the world of Beatledom.” It’s just small moments in many ways. I was trying to bridge the gap for everyone who likes the Beatles on any level.