Peter Jackson to revamp The Beatles ‘Let It Be’ film from original footage

Oscar-winning director Peter Jackson, best known for his Lord of the Rings and Hobbit movies, is collaborating with The Beatles to produce a new film from the 55 hours of footage originally filmed by Michael Lindsay-Hogg for what turned into ‘the intimate bioscopic experience’ that was 1970’s Let It Be motion picture.

The footage was shot in January 1969 as The Beatles prepared for a TV special that never materialised, starting in Twickenham Film Studios and moving to Apple’s London office in Savile Row, climaxing with the legendary performance on the roof of that building — which took place exactly 50 years ago today.

Peter Jackson said, “The 55 hours of never-before-seen footage and 140 hours of audio made available to us, ensures this movie will be the ultimate ‘fly on the wall’ experience that Beatles fans have long dreamt about – it’s like a time machine transports us back to 1969, and we get to sit in the studio watching these four friends make great music together.”

I think it’s fair to say that The Beatles have never really been totally happy with either the finished Let It Be album (famously pulled together by Phil Spector, much to McCartney’s annoyance) or the film, which portrays the struggles within an unhappy looking unit, as George Harrison clashes with Paul and John brings Yoko into virtually every session. The film has never been issued officially on DVD and the band approved a revised version of the album, Let It Be Naked, which was issued in 2003.

According to Peter Jackson, “I was relieved to discover the reality is very different to the myth. After reviewing all the footage and audio that Michael Lindsay-Hogg shot 18 months before they broke up, it’s simply an amazing historical treasure-trove. Sure, there’s moments of drama – but none of the discord this project has long been associated with. Watching John, Paul, George, and Ringo work together, creating now-classic songs from scratch, is not only fascinating – it’s funny, uplifting and surprisingly intimate. I’m thrilled and honoured to have been entrusted with this remarkable footage – making the movie will be a sheer joy.”

The footage will be restored by Park Road Post of Wellington, New Zealand using techniques developed for Jackson’s We Shall Not Grow Old WW1 documentary film.

A name for the film – which is being made with the full co-operation of Sir Paul McCartney, Sir Ringo Starr, Yoko Ono Lennon, and Olivia Harrison – will be announced in due course, along with a release date. With the Abbey Road album widely expected to be reissued this year, 2020 would clearly be a great time release the new movie because it would celebrate 50 years since the original. One would expect some kind of audio/video box set to follow.

Pertinently, Apple have said that a restored version of the original Let It Be movie will also be made available.

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[…] has offered fans a teaser of the delayed Beatles film The Beatles: Get Back. The film is the previously announced reworking of 1970’s Let It Be film and was delayed due to the impact of the COVID-19 […]

rick macdowell

We keep on hearing that the movie will be coming out this year but WHEN WILL IT BE COMING OUT? In May for the 50th Anniversary of Let It Be or afterwards.


Variety reports the following last Thursday:
An entirely different, much more cheerful narrative will be presented in Jackson’s forthcoming film, on the basis of a several-minute-long preview that was screened for an invite-only audience during Universal Music Group’s Grammy weekend showcase. After the audience was warned not to photograph or film the footage, longtime Apple Records chief Jeff Jones (who noted that the Beatles had taken the name for their record company long before the computer colossus was formed) said, “We have created a brand-new film that will attempt to bust the myth that the ‘Let It Be’ sessions were the final nail in the Beatles’ coffin.” And sure enough, an amazing counter-narrative to “Let It Be” film has ensued: It’s brighter both visually and spiritually, with many, many shots of the Beatles joking around, making fun of each other, singing in silly accents and generally indulging in vintage Moptop hijinks. It also features many scenes of the group rehearsing songs from the “Abbey Road” album — their true swan song, which would be recorded over the following summer — and even rough versions of songs that would appear on solo records. On the basis of this clip, Beatles fans will lose their minds over this film, which has no release date but seems likely to be released in the spring, in time for the 50 th anniversary of the original “Let It Be” release date in May.

Colby lushbaugh

I think they should let it be. We have all the good music they made, no sence in seeing them unhappy. They made up.

mark browne

i cant wait for this to come out and no doubt the superdeluxe edition that giles martin will be working on will have all the music in hi res…as an aside…i would love The Beatles Anthology to be remastered for bluray as the current dvd isn’t the greatest in the world considering normally the Beatles only release premium products at premium prices might add


The one thing I really really hope that Jackson avoids is the tendency in recent documentaries to talk down to the audience by using celebs to hype the discussion. They seem to stuff them with “big” names who are there to tell YOU why you should like this or that, or how important this person is or that event was – as though because Whoopie (or whoever) happens to think something or someone is awesome, then by God you should, too!


Interesting comments!
Great news especially for us oldies (but goodies).
I think that everyone should hold off with all their speculations and take the news for what it is – a long overdue review of the Beatles circa 1969.
This project is being handled by one of the greatest film makers ever- and it’s about one of the greatest groups ever. A match made in heaven.

David M

Yep, this. It’s a really badly made documentary that only comes alive in the last 25 mins with stuff filmed in Apple studios and on the roof. The hour or so before that is tedious.

Jeff D

I’ve been waiting for this forever. Let It Be is essential viewing and I have a hunch that when we see all of the footage, it will tell a very different story. At this point, I’ve never understood why they’ve been so hesitant to release it. It doesn’t really show them in a negative light, it just shows them acting human.
Can’t wait.

Neil Jones

Amazing news. Having seen Peter Jackson’s ‘They shall not grow old’, which is incredible the old footage from ’69 is going to look incredible. The Beatles will be all arguing at the correct speed and everything! Hoping he can boil that down to an all-encompassing 2hr movie with maybe a 3 hour directors cut for greedy guts like me :).

Patrick Stibbs

“The Beatles will be all arguing at the correct speed and everything!” Awesome, Neil Jones!

David Bly

Ages ago, here in NY state, at one time our cable TV station gave us four different PBS stations – 3 from NY state, and one from Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, PA, which was the best one.
They had a 10th anniversary celebration in 1976, and I decided to travel the 2½ hours down there.

Imagine my surprise when they were so interested in my story that they decided to put me on the air live to talk about it! And an even bigger surprise when at one point they had me on air with Jean Marsh (of “Upstairs, Downstairs” fame) and Michael Lindsay-Hogg, who were guests at the celebration!
Certainly my closest brush with someone who’d met The Beatles.

Looking forward to whatever is released.

Stan Waterman

The Beatles won an Oscar with the song Let it Be, The film is a very badly edited version of a period of time spent together with there heads up there arses, Drugs , hangers on, financial problems ,lack of any kind of management . But will Paul give the OK on a film where he comes over as a bully ?

David M

He must have done already as it is coming out in original and new versions.


Paul actually comes off rather well, if a bit overexposed. It’s not his fault John and George were disinterested and obnoxious.


It’s a wait and see if there is really “unreleased” material on this production. The 140 hours audio are the two MONO Nagra reel tapes, A & B camera of which a lot, and I mean over 110 hours, been released .. The 55 hours of HQ film footage is something else, not a lot of that has surfaced, so that might be of interest…


Speaking of weird edits, what happened to the flubbed verse in the video above? You know, when John sings, “Goo glab blah glab blub boo glub blap she goo me.”


hi andy ,due to various takes being done , i feel that this is another take. you know rewriting history is one thing that the people in control concerning the beatles feel they need to do.just like the experience hendrix team they mix out/down other musicans contributions., make new edits etc.why can they just let it be. no pun intended


Bruce, I take it you didn’t think much of the ‘Naked’ redux in 2003? Personally, I found it to be a vast improvement on the original version.

Admittedly, some of these ‘revamp’ projects just end up gilding a perfectly decent lily; however, I do think there’s a real sense of unfinished business with ‘Let It Be’ and I’m glad they’ve finally got around to doing something with it.

Simon Stokes

Not sure if someone has mentioned it elswhere. Sorry if they have.

But Peter Jackson is a huge Beatles fan. Has been for a very long time. He is the peferct choice for this.

The film is in very good hands.


Totally agree with that.


this movie and the 50 hours of music is a disgrace. they should of never gave in to pauls idea/demands.they just spent the previous summer and fall writing and recording the beatles(
white album ) which was a huge project and had put strain on the band both in the studio and in their own personal lives. to be in a huge film production studio in the dead of a very cold winter was insane. they should of taken the time to be apart and return in the spring fully reguvnated with new songs and a new attitude. look what happened when the spring/summer did arrive, they started work refreshed and what came out was the amazing abbey road lp. they should let it be. it does nothing but show a band in a state of dispair not a band at its most creative.


Regarding YO, there will always be people who convince themselves that this talent-less opportunist has some kind of musical ability and had nothing to do with the break up of The Beatles. Both so blatantly untrue. As for “falling in love with John”, she certainly fell in love with his fame and money and has lived of it ever since.


Sounds like someone woke up in a poopy mood. (Sigh.) Sorry, Paul. I can only wonder what sort of comments you didn’t allow to be posted.


This is terrific news: Let It Be is a ridiculously underrated record. Two of Us, I Me Mine, Get Back, and the title track make any Top Twenty Beatles Songs, whilst Don’t Let Me Down is up there with Rain as the best-ever Beatles flip side. To see them working on the songs in the studio will be fascinating.
I don’t get the desire that some of you seem to have for the new film to concentrate on the rows. Everyone knows that the sessions were not easy (being filmed in a freezing aircraft hanger doubtless did not help) and of course we should see some of that (looking forward to George’s “I just want to please you” rap). But spending a month with the same half dozen people in such conditions is bound to be stressful for anyone, so why focus on it? And they plainly survived: just look at the jolly atmosphere on the wintry Apple roof!
Be glad, because we really will not see their like again!


As this is a Jackson project I’m expecting it to come out as three lengthy films, followed by bum-numbingly longer director’s cuts, then some time later there’ll be three vastly extended and uneccessary prequels….. which will look largely computer generated and weird!

Dean Taylor

Thank you Andy B..
that’s exactly what I think and feel but couldn’t think of how get it across.
You reply is spot on .



Dean Taylor

So John was just a career opportunity for yoko?..


Oh…my…god. Finally.

Yoko bashers: please buy all of her albums. Listen to them. Perhaps twice. Then leave comments. I purchased Onobox when it was released and haven’t regretted it. You have no idea…

Golden Age Of Useless And Pointless Knowledge.

Sorry AndyB. If Yoko had no association with the Beatles/John Lennon no one would have ever heard of her outside of the artist community in which she mixed.

As for her recorded output, who would have given her a recording contract.

This is of course my opinion and there are many out there who appreciate her `music`. I base my opinion on having heard 90% of her albums and I think they are terrible.

Golden Age, at least your opinion is based on having heard her music, or ‘music’, as you tellingly typed. As for her association with the Beatles, it certainly did help her become well-known, but who knows what her trajectory might have been had she not met Lennon? We can’t change the past, and certainly cannot say that no one would have heard of her. Perhaps she would have been given a recording contract through an avante garde label or jazz label? We will never know, but we can’t make guesses about what might have been. It isn’t her fault that she fell in love with a Beatle, and a Beatle fell in love with her.

The Golden Age Of Opinions

As I stated AndyB, my opinion about Yoko`s `music` is `my` opinion. I don`t expect anyone else to have the same opinion.

However I stand by my comment that very few of us would have heard of Yoko Ono if she had never met John Lennon.

Whether The Beatles would have stayed together had John Lennon not met Yoko, who knows. George Harrison wasn`t very happy, JL & PMc were drifting apart, so the chances of more music after Let It Be/Abbey Road were slim. That again is my opinion.

And in the end
The love you take
Is equal to the love you make…


I do know some people who went to art school in the 60s and they’ve spoken of Yoko being very well-known (in the contemporary art world, at least) before she met John etc. I suppose it’s all perspective.

Miguel Rocha

If you think it’s terrible, why would you listen to 90%?

Jarmo Keranen

I once tried to listen Yoko Ono/Plastic Ono Band album from 1970. I had to stop after several minutes because i couldn’t stop my laughing and all the neighbours cats started Yoko miming competition. I’ll have to admit that her third album Approximately Infinite Universe is good. I’ll buy it someday!


Yeah, Jarmo, that album can be a tough listen. And I completely understand that Yoko’s vocals can produce migraines in some individuals. She is definitely not for everyone. Challenging indeed. But the more I listened to that particular record, the more I began to appreciate it. On “Why,” Lennon absolutely shreds on guitar. Ringo is unhinged. The interplay between the musicians makes me think, “these guys are having FUN!” And her shrieking seemed to make more sense in that context. I don’t know. I just LIKE it. Reminds me of John Coltrane’s late period. A tough go, but worth it in the end. Unbridled energy. But that is just my opinion. I just hate when people dismiss somebody because they don’t like their art. I can’t stand Guns n Roses, but I know a lot of people who do, and I try to not knock that band because they aren’t my taste. It is almost as if liking Yoko is some sort of personality disorder; how can anyone like that crap? Yes, she was lucky in the sense that she met someone with great power in the music industry who forced his label to release her albums. And, yes, she used his influence to further her ambitions. But I don’t think she had any ulterior motives. I simply think that she saw recording music as another sort canvas for her art. Sometimes I like to be challenged by music. Sometimes what others think is weird pulls me in. I mean, I can’t listen to the white album and skip Revolution 9. It is strange, complex, bizarre. It throws me off balance. Sometimes I like that feeling, and what is wrong with that? But people who get annoyed with Yoko and trash her with all kinds of disrespect because they perceive her as some sort of irritant without any context are simply ignorant. You don’t have to like her, but you don’t have to hate her.

Dirk D.

Well said AndyB, with respect for everyone’s opinion

Dean Taylor

2019 and people are still bashing Yoko …
growing musical differences and a proposed management deal split the band .. not Yoko
I’m sure most here have seen the anthology dvds(extended blu rays please)
All the truth you ever need and in there own words.


Yeah. Blu rays. Please. Now.


Is this more Beatle history being re-written? In the 2009 remasters CD notes there was nothing mentioned about Apple, Klein, drugs, in-figthing, the Eastmans, Northern Songs, walk-outs and Yoko. Contrast this to the more honest Byrds and Monkees reissue notes. Then – for last year’s White Album box set – Giles Martin claimed there was nothing whatsoever on the tapes concerning dischord about Yoko being there. Nothing?Really?

Now there’s this project. I hope it’s as great as it could be. However, a film where they all get on, there’s no bickering and everyone is tickety boo about Yoko would simply not be the truth, would it? Apple with saccharine? I hope not….


To be honest, I’m not that interested in seeing the hissy fits anyway. With 50-odd hours of unreleased film to play with, I’d imagine Jackson can put together something a bit more edifying than HD footage of George and Yoko squabbling over the custard creams.

I remember being slightly disappointed that the ‘Anthology’ series barely scratched the surface of these sessions. No doubt a lot of it is meandering, self-indulgent dreck but hopefully, there will be some interesting gems in there too.

Ghost of Ronald Raygun

As a Jackson film is the first part called Fellowship of Ringo ?


I hope it isn’t a santised job and that the infamous Jamming with Yoko scene is included (where Paul plays into his amp and Ringo loses it on the drums). I also hope Something and All Things Must Pass are included too. Hope no celebrity tossers (Goldberg, Hanks, Meryl bloody Streep) are let anywhere near it and it’s just a Fabs only project.


Great news – thanks for the heads up, Paul. I’d all but given up on this ever being officially released, and Peter Jackson’s involvement is a real bonus. (If it’s anything like as technically impressive as ‘They Shall Not Grow Old’ then we’re in for a real treat.)

So presumably, we’ll be seeing ‘Abbey Road’ at the back end of this year, with the ‘Let It Be’ album/film boxset following in 2020. I’m gonna need a bigger shelf…


I wonder if the footage will need to be cropped?
I hate it when they do that.

Paul Wainwright

Great great news made my day

Charlie Waffles

Let’s hope it all comes out terrific.

Andy Rodgers

The band version of “All Things Must Pass” MUST be included on this. It’s not the most polished performance but multi-angle colour footage alone warrants it being seen.


How many versions will there be? Will there a be a Ringo statue like we got for Gollum?
Let It Be – Extended Cut. Let It Be – Ultimate Cut. Let It Be – The Precious Cut.

Dr Volume

There’s a great book called “Get Back. The Beatles Let it be Disaster” written by two authors who supposedly played through the whole set of tapes and transcribe the highlights of what was said and what music was played. It’s a kind of hypnotically dull but addictive read. The reality of Get Back/LiB is they were long, listless, draughty sessions. The new material wasn’t their best, they only perked up when vamping through old Rock and Roll covers. Much as I wish the cameras were rolling for more fun filled mop top sessions it’s still fascinating to have a fly on the wall.

There’s lots happening amid the endless cigarettes and tuning up…George’s heart was elsewhere, Lennon was feeling queasy, Ringo was Ringo and poor old Paul desparately jollying things along with his doomed concept about the big, one off Beatles gig. There is a good old story there which doesn’t quite come across in the original, so the idea of a remake is more exiting than just releasing a buffed up master of the original with outtakes. Whatever it is, it’ll please me…

Jarmo Keranen

I hope they do the same to The Rolling Stones movie Gimme Shelter, which was shot at the end of the same year 1969!


I don’t agree. I thibk Gimme Shelter is great as it is. If there’s additional concert footage I’d love to see that but not in the context of the film.

Not Available

Front runner for the title of the new version: It Be Let.


I don’t get it.

Kenneth Tilley

Excellent news about the Peter Jackson Film/Revamp “but” i’ll believe it when i see it as far the original Let It Be is concerned. Also i hope Let It Be isn’t just given only a theatrical release as Shea was. I’d love to see it released at last, but after so many promises, i’m not holding my breathe

Len Read

The official Peter Jackson press release says the original Let It Be movie WILL be remastered and reissued as was. Re Shea Stadium. That is down to claims about who actually owns the footage — Apple or the promoter at the time, Sid Bernstein. His company is suing Apple. It tried to stop the theatrical release and is blocking the DVD. Can’t see that being resolved anytime soon and nothing to blame The Beatles for.

Michael Leek

At long last – loved the BBC headline, Lord of the Ringo’s.
It will be what it will be – so Let it Be and enjoy that all these years later we are still passionate about the Fab Four…


Thanks the Music Gods!!!


Great news! Always been a big fan of Vigotone’s “Thirty Days” 17 CD box set for many years. It covers the key musical “Get Back” moments without the chatter. All those tracks are claimed to be digitally transferred with great care from the master tapes and do sound very good. I’m enough of a fan that it will be fun to compare. Looking forward to this a lot! Cheers :-).


The very last line in the column is what I wanted to see. If that is truly the case, then Jackson’s new version will be very welcome. I didn’t want it to replace the original, however.


This might be good but hope that Jackson won’t turn this into trilogy.


I hope he does. I’d like to see as much of that raw footage as pissible

Paul in (frozen) Northern Illinois

What the odds a lyric from the title song become the title for this documentary?
Very happy with the news today and can’t wait to see what Mr. Jackson comes up with.


I’m going with “Lord of the Ringos”.

Simon Stokes

Would that include the concert on the roof?


The Apple scruffs can’t wait and neither can I. This announcement made my day. Thanks Paul!

Arthur O'Brien

Great news, and about time!

Rodolfo Martin

If Peter Jackson was already capable to restore into color film that was originally in B&W, I can imagine how pristine this material , which is originally in color, will be.
We have to way? It is possible two big projects by the Beatles on the same year: Let it Be and Abbey Road on the same year!!

George Steven Cleere

Well, having seen ‘We Shall Not Grow Old” just after Christmas (and not having seen any other of his films… sorry..), I think it should be a great artistic achievement. That having been said, I have various boots across many discs, both audio and video – and I think it shall take the talent of Peter Jackson to make this into any kind of a ‘happy’ event on film. A little worried, as other readers have mentioned, that Macca – and to a certain extent Yoko and Olivia will try to re-write (or at least put in a different light –) history. No doubt there were moments, but going by the more objective recollections of the the supporting cast, it was not a pleasant experience.
However, it still turned out some awesome music and led to Abbey Road -so I shall buy it regardless…

Craig Hedges

I’m very sad to read the negative comments regarding Paul McCartney trying to rewrite history. Paul has every right to be proud of the Beatles and his own achievements. I don’t think he has tried to rewrite history but he has put his side of the story, the same way that John did in his bitter post split interviews. Sadly after John was murdered his stories were taken as gospel. This was also compounded by Philip Norman’s book Shout or Sh*te as it’s better known.
Paul, Yoko, Ringo and Olivia have given their approval for this film and one person isn’t allowed to influence the project. Be grateful it’s happening.

Paul Mortimer

Will look forward to this, as a lifetime fan who was 11 in 1962, as the Beatles exploded onto the pop scene and conquered the world.

I have pulled out my nice Apple import NYC gatefold of Let It Be to play, to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the rooftop concert! I’m sure it will pass the audition on my Roksan T/T!

Dean Taylor

The best news so far this year ..
Now come on Mr Page how about some word on those long promised new /old live recordings for your 50th anniversary , make 2019 a great one .

Uncle Meat

Damn right! The Led Zeppelin 50th anniversary campaign has been a disaster so far. Wouldn’t be too surprised if there was Celebration Day SDE next. We need comprehensive live bootleg boxes, just like the magnificent KC sets were. From the early years, thank you very much. With no editing this time, mr. Led Wallet.

Golden Age Of Amendments

The Return Of The Kings!


If he uses the whole 55 hours of footage for the film it will still be his shortest film to date.


Good one.

Kilgore Trout

I have been lurking here for years and have never left a comment until now, just to let you know this really made me laugh. Well done.