When Apple requested me to make the music video, I used to be very reluctant – I believed my subsequent few months could be a hell of much more enjoyable if that tough process was anyone else’s drawback, and I may very well be like every other Beatles fan, having fun with the night-before-Christmas anticipation as the discharge of a brand new Beatles track and music video approached – in 1995, l beloved the childlike pleasure I felt as the discharge of Free As A Chicken was inching nearer.
I may have that have as soon as once more – all I needed to do was say no to The Beatles.
To be sincere, simply excited about the duty of getting to make a music video worthy of the final track The Beatles will ever launch produced a set of anxieties nearly too overwhelming to take care of. My lifelong love of The Beatles collided right into a wall of sheer terror on the considered letting everybody down. This created intense insecurity in me as a result of I’d by no means made a music video earlier than, and was not capable of think about how I may even start to create one for a band that broke up over 50 years in the past, had by no means truly carried out the track, and had half of its members not with us.
It was going to be far simpler to do a runner.
I simply wanted just a little time to determine a very good motive for turning The Beatles down – so I by no means truly agreed to make the music video for Now And Then (in actual fact I nonetheless haven’t to at the present time).
I informed Apple how the shortage of appropriate footage frightened me. We’d want to make use of lots of uncommon and unseen movie, however there’s little or no … Nothing in any respect appeared to exist displaying Paul, George and Ringo engaged on Now And Then in 1995 … There’s not a lot footage of John within the mid-seventies when he wrote the demo … I grizzled in regards to the lack of unseen Beatles footage from the ’60s … And so they didn’t even shoot any footage displaying Paul and Ringo engaged on the track final yr.
A Beatles music video should have nice Beatles footage at its core. There’s no approach actors or CGI Beatles must be used. Each shot of The Beatles wanted to be real. By now I actually had no thought how anybody may make a Now And Then music video in the event that they didn’t have first rate footage to work with, and this was removed from being a lame excuse. My worry and insecurity now had strong the reason why they need to prevail and permit me to say no with out wanting an excessive amount of like a hen.
I knew The Beatles don’t take no for a solution if their minds are set on one thing – however they didn’t even watch for me to say no. I discovered myself swept alongside as they rapidly addressed my issues. Paul and Ringo shot footage of themselves performing and despatched that to me. Apple unearthed over 14 hours of lengthy forgotten movie shot through the 1995 recording periods, together with a number of hours of Paul, George and Ringo engaged on Now And Then, and gave all that to me. Sean and Olivia discovered some nice unseen dwelling film footage and despatched that. To cap issues off, a couple of treasured seconds of The Beatles performing of their leather-based fits, the earliest recognized movie of The Beatles and by no means seen earlier than, was kindly equipped by Pete Finest.
Watching this footage fully modified the scenario – I may see how a music video may very well be made. Truly, I discovered it far simpler if I considered it as making a brief film, in order that’s what I did… My insecurity with music movies didn’t matter anymore if I wasn’t making one.
Even so, I nonetheless had no strong imaginative and prescient for what this brief movie must be – so I turned to the track for steerage.
After we had separated John’s voice on the demo tape over a yr in the past, Giles had produced an early mixture of Now And Then. This had been despatched to me again in 2022. I beloved it. Since then I should have listened to Now And Then over 50 occasions, purely for pleasure.
Now I began listening to it intently for various causes. I hoped that concepts or inspiration for the brief movie would one way or the other float up from the music. And that started to occur. As I stored listening, it felt just like the track was creating concepts and pictures that began forming in my head – with none acutely aware effort from me.
I teamed up with Jabez Olssen, my Get Again editor, to attempt to determine methods the brand new movie footage may very well be used to assist these wispy concepts. It was a really natural course of, and we slowly began construct little fragments, sliding photos and music round in numerous methods till issues started to click on in.
We needed the brief movie to deliver a couple of tears to the attention, however producing emotion utilizing solely archive footage is a difficult factor. Happily, the straightforward energy of this stunning track did lots of the work for us, and we completed the primary 30 or 40 secs of the movie pretty rapidly.
Having performed that, we jumped straight to the ending and tried to craft one thing that would adequately sum up the enormity of The Beatles’ legacy – in the previous couple of seconds of their remaining recording. This proved to be not possible. Their contribution to the world is simply too immense, and their wondrous reward of music has change into a part of our DNA and now defies description.
I noticed we wanted the creativeness of each viewer to do what we couldn’t, and have every viewer create their very own private second of farewell to The Beatles – however we needed to gently steer everybody to that place. I had some imprecise concepts, however didn’t actually know learn how to obtain this.
Happily, Dhani Harrison occurred to be visiting NZ right now. I mentioned the ending with him, and described one imprecise thought I’d been toying with. His eyes instantly full of tears – so that’s the approach we went.
Jabez and I now started excited about the center part. We may truly watch the start and finish now, and rapidly realised our preliminary plan of getting related emotional energy proceed by means of this center part could be fully flawed. That was not who The Beatles had been. At their core they had been irreverent and humorous, and the center part ought to seize that spirit. We wanted to snigger at The Beatles, and snigger with them. They had been at all times sending themselves up – and the extra significantly different individuals took them, the extra they’d clown round.
Fortunately we discovered a set of unseen outtakes within the vault, the place The Beatles are relaxed, humorous and quite candid. These change into the backbone of our center part, and we wove the humour into some footage shot in 2023. The result’s fairly nutty and offered the video with a lot wanted steadiness between the unhappy and the humorous.
It was lastly completed after WētāFX accomplished a couple of easy, however tough VFX photographs.
To be sincere, whereas we hope we’ve given The Beatles an appropriate remaining farewell, that’s one thing you’ll must determine for yourselves when it’s lastly launched – only some days from now.
Having obtained to the tip, I’m very comfortable I’m not ready for the discharge of anyone else’s Now And Then music video. I’ve real delight in what we made, and I’ll cherish that for years to return. An enormous because of Apple Corps and the Fabs for giving me all of the assist I wanted – and never permitting me to wriggle away.