The Real Beatles Story

 
 

Here is how the producers of this set explained the differences between the 1993 Director’s Cut and the 1995 Beatles’ approved version.

The approved version was released on laser disc and VHS videotape in 1996. A DVD version with some extras appeared in April 2003:

The beautifully packaged deluxe 10-DVD box set includes detailed liner quotes, full color brochures, high-quality video transfer, special features and a custom storage box complete with new Anthology artwork. This is an extremely limited edition pressing.

Highlights and Alternative Segments Include:

Story VS Performance - The 1993 Director’s Cut of Anthology focused primarily on the Beatles story, using performance footage only to enhance the story. The final version would remove much of the story and details to include as much TV and concert footage as possible. At the time this appeared to be the best approach, but in retrospect opinions may change after hearing the uncut interviews; this was after all their one chance to tell their story. Collectors have countless sources for the TV and concert footage, but only one option to hear their story as done for the Anthology series, until now that is!

The final version would remove much of the
story and details to include as much TV
and concert footage as possible.

Uncensored Version - Comparisons between the two versions of Anthology clearly show heavy editing. An entire sequence regarding Yoko Ono and her effects on the band has been cut-down to almost nothing; only on the 1993 version will you hear unedited and sometimes unflattering comments. Many interviews did not even make it to the Anthology book. One example is George commenting on the positive experiences he had with drugs, including the famous dentist’s real name! The 1993 director’s cut also includes the original extended sequence on George’s songwriting later trimmed at George’s request. It becomes obvious by program 1 what you are seeing is what the director and production team assembled and presented to the band before the Beatles made numerous change request.

An entire sequence regarding Yoko Ono
and her effects on the band has been
cut-down to almost nothing
...
The 1993 director’s cut also includes the
original extended sequence
on George’s songwriting later trimmed
at George’s request.

Program Beginnings - Each program begins with an unused animated sequence in place of the Help! Introduction.

In My Life Opening Montage - Programs 1-4 use this song montage with the commercial version using it only to start program 1. The early montage contains different shots from the final version including Allen Klein.

Flashback Montage - An early idea was to begin each program (beginning with program 2) with a flashback montage covering important material seen in the previous program, this worked well for the first few programs, but unfortunately took too much time, Beginning with program 4, the flashbacks only went as far back as the previous program

While My Guitar Gently Weeps Montage - Ideas about this montage were changing by program 5, and no song montage was used for this program. For program 6, a different approach/song was used, and for the first time it was flash forward montage, using much footage not seen elsewhere in the program. Programs 7-8 dropped the montage idea entirely.

Quality Of Archival Footage - At this early stage, Apple had to use what footage it had available with quality varying from poor to ex. Some of early TV appearances and newsreels are obviously taken from VHS screening tapes, and many include time-codes. Some scenes contain the text "Temporary Picture". All of the new interviews and Apple owned material, including footage taken directly from the original cut of "The Long And Winding Road" look great and contains no time code. It is quite interesting to see what Apple’s film archives looked like in 1993. In 1995, Anthology producer Chips Chipperfield hinted at what this early version might look like when asked why they could not just use the original 10-hour version for the home video release "We can but that’s off-line. Off-line is a rough cut. It’s cut from whatever archive sources we have so a lot of it is VHS."

Unused McCartney Interview - Programs 1 and 2 include an unused interview with Paul. This was the first interview shot and used before finally being replaced with a re-recorded Paul in black turtleneck. With this first interview being re-shot, the stories vary from the final release

Partially Unused Harrison Interview - For most of Programs 1 and 2, the only Harrison interview used is the control room interview with George sporting a moustache. More than half of this interview was later removed and replaced with a re-recorded clean-shaven George. With much of this first interview going unused, the stories vary from the final version

Unused Neil Aspinall Interviews - For most of the first two programs, we see Neil’s first interview sessions with him not wearing a hat, the stories heard vary from the commercial version.

Derek Taylor - Derek has a larger role in the early version of Anthology, and is featured in numerous unseen interviews.

Program Endings - An early idea was to end each program with a sequence showing the progression the band was making. Examples would be an overhead view showing the move from Liverpool to London, or the move from London to the US.

Audio Outtakes - It is important to note that the 1993 Anthology uses very little studio outtake recordings. There are no created studio sequences of audio outtakes. We don’t hear any real audio outtakes until the 1968 studio sessions, as the audio outtakes were still being examined at this early stage of production and were not made available to the production team just yet. But we do get to hear the unused "Hums" ending for "A Day In The Life" along with part of Take 4!

Early/Abandoned Ideas - The 1993 Anthology uses many ideas later modified or dropped entirely. The recreations of fans rooms differ greatly; TV and tour montages were created then later dropped. An early idea was to show the move from Liverpool to Abbey Road studios, done by filming an entire trip-sequence taking you from Liverpool and ending at George Martin’s door in Abbey Road Studios. Other early ideas put Paul in the film "The Girl Can’t Help It". Various other unused segments appear throughout the entire eight programs

No Closing Credits - At this early stage, none of the eight programs contain closing credits.

1993 Ending - At this early stage, the documentary ends with the "Let It Be" sessions and rooftop concert. Program 8 part 1 dates from December 1993. 1994 would alter the documentary considerably, with the three remaining Beatles reforming to record new music and joint interviews. It was at this point; the 1993 version was heavily re-edited leaving only a hint of what it had originally looked like.

Detailed differences found on
Anthology Director’s Cut 1993

1940-1963

George’s take on naming the group ‘I give it 50% Lennon 50% Sutcliffe’

Tribute to Mal Evans includes short "Maxwell’s Silver Hammer"

Different edit of 1960 home recordings, does not have tape spool run out

Greater details on Pete Best and his staying out all night with strippers

Different German tour montage, uses alternate footage and includes "Sheila" in the medley

More details on changing over to suits

No school photo with Paul, George and Neil. A Neil photo is used in place of

Different segment with "Twenty Flight Rock", song is longer and Paul is made to look part of the movie

Greater details on George’s black eye

Greater details on "Love Me Do" single

Details on the Harrison/Martin "Don’t like your tie" story

Different edit of the 8mm van footage

Unused sequence creating the move from Liverpool to the recording studios at Abbey Road

Greater details on the their early influences

Greater details on early tours, John Gentle, Discoveries etc


1963

Unused segments regarding the "From Me To You" and "She Loves You" singles

Unused 1963 TV show montage, showing the comedy of the Beatles

Different comments on the rattle your jewelry Royal Command performance

"She Love You" TV performance from Royal Command Performance is included

Unused footage with John and Helen Shapiro

Different edit of color 8mm films set to "It Won’t Be Long"

Comments on the harmonica sound

Longer segment on getting singles released in the US

More details on the move to London

Longer segment on meeting the Stones

Footage of the Sweden 1963 tour

Unused Xmas jingle


1964

Longer segment on Murray the K

Longer segment on meeting cripples on tour, George "John was allergic to cripples"

More comments on the 1964 tour and police, Ringo "The police were very good to us, they used to steal pills from the kids and give ‘em to us"

Segment on Derek, Paul "It was very hectic being the Beatles publicist, Derek became a raving alcoholic"

More details on why Derek left in 1964

Different shots used during the 1964 tour montage

Different re-creation of fans room. Different camera panning and differences between color and b&w.

Different montage for "I’ll Follow The Sun" more color photos, no 8mm yet

Alternate photos/edit used to illustrate Ringo’s crashing of yacht in Miami

Comments on sound settings for Ed Sullivan show

Alternate insert shots used for "All My Loving" from first Ed Sullivan performance

More details on 1964 Holland/Aussie Tour. George, "How many Beatles does it take to change a light bulb?"

Different edits for A Hard Day’s Night segments, uses opening chord over and over

Unused comments from George about "Can’t Buy Me Love" recording

Unused bedroom scene used as intro for "Can’t Buy Me Love" from A Hard Day’s Night movie

Unused montage for "You Can’t Do That" from Australia

Different edits of tour footage in Holland, Hong Kong, Australia

More details on the Hollywood Bowl recordings; George "It must have been crap"

Rare interview with Jimmy Nichols and The Beatles upon arrival in Holland

Alternate edit of February 1964 return to England interview, using US photo inserts between questions, an idea later dropped

Alternate intro to "Kansas City" from Shindig! Footage does not project on wall


1965

Different comments on smoking reefer before meeting the Queen.

Neil comments on the selection of the 1965 set list and an unused montage is shown

An unused section about playing in Spain, and the details surrounding the performances.

Unseen concert footage from Madrid.

More details on meeting Bob Dylan and his influence

Different interviews/segments on Help! film. George "We smoked reefer on the plane to the Bahamas, we used Mal’s cigar smoke to cover it"

More details on the Rubber Soul cover, George stating it was his favorite and loving how their faces went long

Segment on George’s songwriting with Paul explaining why they did not include George in the song-writing partnership. George "They wrote all their crap songs early"

Different sound mix on Shea footage, inserts vary from commercial version.

"I’m Down" from Shea cross fades at end to 1965 Ed Sullivan performance

Longer montage of 1965-tour footage set to "Run For Your Life"

"Day Tripper", "We Can Work It Out" promos are full screen

Longer Bedroom/BBC Radio sequence before "We Can Work It Out"

More comments on meeting Elvis

Alternate footage of John used for his voice over about meeting Elvis

Longer Photomontage for the "Rubber Soul" LP including "If I Needed Someone" Photo selections differ


1966

Alternate "Eleanor Rigby" sequence. Paul’s performance is in color and runs longer.

More details on Dr. Robert and the LSD experiences

Unused segment on the 1966 German tour and return visit to Hamburg

Alternate concert clips for the Tokyo concerts

Neil explains how the second Japan show was better than first. Ringo "It was?"

Alternate intro for "Paperback Writer" promo

Alternate intro for "Rain" promo

Unused interviews from Paul about George and "Taxman"

Alternate "Taxman" photomontage

Unused segment about salaries with George telling stories of Brian’s contracts

More details on "Tomorrow Never Knows" and its recording process

Different montage for Revolver LP cover

Neil, "they never practiced their Revolver songs for tour"

More details on the origins of "Yellow Submarine"

No "Yellow Submarine" animation over the 1966 8mm films

Neil’s story of Peter Brown bringing box of chocolates filled with marijuana to John in Spain, and them spilling out onto the carpet


1967

Long unused segment with George Martin on the construction of "A Day In The Life" using take 4 and take 6, not the rehearsal take. The original ‘Hums’ ending is also played

Different montage for "Sgt Peppers" using b&w film footage not photos to represent people on the cover.

Long segment on how the cover was designed and who was selected and why.

Different footage/edit on Bangor trip, unused comments

Longer segment on Haight Ashbury, and George’s experience there

Longer segments and comments regarding Brian’s death.

Alternate shots used in "Hide Your Love Away" montage, uses commercial version of song

Alternate segments and longer interview from George Martin about John’s drug trip in the studio

More details on the Greece Island trip, and about Magic Alex’s involvement. Different edit of home movie footage. No voice over from Ringo on end of film

"Strawberry Fields" promo has no home movies inserted

"All You Need Is Love" is original b&w video

More comments on the satellite broadcast

George Martin comments on why no one Beatle could become leader of the group

More details/comments on "Magical Mystery Tour".

Unheard story from Ringo on his Aunt Jessie and her body odor

"I am the Walrus" segment is shorter and cross fades into Ed Sullivan performance

"Hello Goodbye" promo goes to color sooner

Neil on the origins of "Strawberry Fields Forever"


1968

Long unused segments on Yoko’s effect on the band, George "Yoko saw us as a wedge between her and John." Paul "We were like her courtiers"

Longer segment on the merits of the White LP

George repeats the common story of why Ringo quit

Unheard comments from Neil, Paul and Ringo on Yoko

"Revolution" take 1 is used with a few new inserts, later this take was replaced. No voice-over

"Hey Jude" Different edits during second half of song, no picture overlap

Neil comments on how Paul came up with the Apple name, and origins of the image used

Indepth coverage of the India experience

Entire segment devoted to the story of "Sexy Sadie" with the song set to home movie footage

Neil on developing the "Two Virgins" photos

Derek on meeting Yoko and kissing her on the head

Comments from Paul, George and Ringo on the music of "Two Virgins"

Ringo comments on the burying of egg shells in India

George tells story about "Hey Jude" being written for Julian Lennon

Longer segment from Paul on writing "Hey Jude"


1969

"Get Back." Unused montage from Apple studios is used to illustrate the problems they were having with George Martin.

More details on the Get Back/Let It Be sessions

No crowd ambience on rooftop performance

Greater details on the Paul/George riff



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