Beatles

It was 50 years ago “today”... and anyone that though the anniversary of The Beatles’ Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band would pass quietly was clearly mistaken. After confirmation of new versions of the album releases on CD boxset and vinyl, there is also a new movie out soon.

It Was 50 Years Ago Today! The Beatles: Sgt Pepper & Beyond is due to hit UK cinemas on May 3 with a DVD release to follow on July 3. The original album was actually released on June 1 1967. The movie focusses on the 12 months surrounding the recording of what is the most iconic Beatles album – even if fans sometimes think it’s not exactly their best – and is directed by Alan G Parker. In chronological terms, the movie begins in August 1966, exactly where Ron Howard’s Beatles movie Eight Days A Week ends.

It uses rare archival footage to tell his story, along with a range of newer interviews with subjects including original Beatles drummer Pete Best, John Lennon’s sister Julia and Beatles biographer Hunter Davies. Surviving Beatles Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr do not appear in new interviews.

“We’re combining first-hand accounts of the events that allowed Sgt. Pepper to happen with rare and unseen footage that we’ve forensically unearthed from mainstream archives and private collectors,” said Parker. “The last days of touring…. the execution of the album…. and the aftermath that it left behind will, I hope, give the audience an intimate sense of the band, the time and the impact of this extraordinary album.”

Parker has previously directed You Wanted the Best... You Got the Best: The Official Kiss Movie  and Never Mind the Sex Pistols: an Alternative History.

There’s a new website dedicated to the movie alone – 50yearsago.com – where you can watch a trailer, read updates and social media posts.