Peter Jackson says Disney wanted all swearing cut from The Beatles' Get Back documentary

29 November 2021, 14:35 | Updated: 29 November 2021, 14:44

The Beatles recording at their Apple studio in January 1969
The Beatles recording at their Apple studio in January 1969. Picture: Everett Collection Inc / Alamy Stock Photo

The film-maker has revealed that he was backed up by Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr over a "sanitised" version of the film.

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Peter Jackson claims that Disney wanted to censor the new Beatles documentary Get Back by removing all the swearing.

However, the film-maker received the support of Sir Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr - along with George Harrison's widow Olivia - in overturning the decision.

The Beatles recording at Apple studios in London, January 2021
The Beatles recording at Apple studios in London, January 2021. Picture: Disney+/Apple Corps Ltd

"Disney wanted to remove all the swearing," Jackson told the NME. "Ringo, Paul and Olivia said: ‘That’s how we spoke. That’s how we talked. That’s how we want the world to see us'."

“Paul describes it as being very raw,” the director added. “He said to me: ‘That is a very accurate portrayal of how we were then.’ Ringo said: ‘It’s truthful.’ The truthfulness of it is important to them. They don’t want a whitewash. They don’t want it to be sanitised."

Read more: Why did The Beatles break up? The true story of who left the band first

The Beatles - Get Back poster
The Beatles - Get Back poster. Picture: Disney/Apple Corps Ltd

The three-part series, which launched on Disney+ over the weekend, was compiled by the Lord Of The Rings filmmaker from over 60 hours of footage shot in January 1969.

The sessions were filmed for a potential live TV special, but disagreements within The Beatles meant that the idea was abandoned and the footage was turned into the 1970 feature film Let It Be.

Get Back is an extended look at the sessions, which clocks in at just under 8 hours - but Jackson claims that the lengthy running time was essential to telling the story.

The climax of The Beatles&squot; Get Back documentary - the famous "rooftop" gig
The climax of The Beatles' Get Back documentary - the famous "rooftop" gig. Picture: Disney+/Apple Corps Ltd

“I’d like to say that I didn’t really leave out anything that I thought was important,” he explained. “which is why the duration has crept up to what it is today."

He went on: "I felt acutely – and this is the Beatles fan part of me kicking in – anything I don’t include in this movie might go back in the vault for another 50 years.

"I was seeing and hearing these amazing moments. I thought: ‘God, people have got to see this. This is great. They have to see this'.”

The Beatles: Get Back is currently streaming on Disney+


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