Cleveland’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame launched its new Help! Behind the Scenes of the Beatles’ Movie retrospective with a members-only reception on November 16. Timed to coincide with Apple’s long-awaited release of the Beatles 1965 feature film on DVD, the exhibit features a wealth of memorabilia that includes George Harrison’s original script, copies of director Richard Lester’s hand-written notes, film posters from around the world, costumes, recorded interviews, and promotional materials.

Also on prominent display is the Gibson J-160 “jumbo” acoustic guitar that John Lennon played in the film’s title sequence and in the “You’re Gonna Lose That Girl” Abbey Road studio scene. That same instrument also features prominently in the film’s Bahamas-set performance of “Another Girl” and in a memorable rendition of George Harrison’s “I Need You,” shot on England’s Salisbury Plain with the Fab Four guarded by British Army tanks.

Help! also marked the first time most of the Beatles’ American fans saw the band in color— their first film and epochal live appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show were shot in black and white. Veteran publicist Jerry Pam, who originally worked on the advertising campaigns for both A Hard Day’s Night and Help!, recalls that executives for financier/distributor United Artists decided early on “wouldn’t it be great to see the Beatles in color?”  Indeed, that angle became one of Pam’s major selling points in his ad campaigns for the film, as many of the promotional Help! artifacts in the Rock Hall retrospective attest. The exhibit runs through March 30. – Jerry McCulley