L-R Rod Culbertson (Paul) , Ray Ashcroft (Ringo), Stephen MacKenna (John) and John Altman (George Harrison)
Release date 23 November 1979
Running time 104 minutes
Birth of the Beatles is a 1979 biopic film, produced by Dick Clark's company (Dick Clark Productions) and directed by Richard Marquand. The film was released into cinemas worldwide except in parts of the United States, where it was shown as a TV film. The film focuses on the early history of the Beatles. It was released only nine years after the announced break-up of the Beatles themselves.
John Altman as George Harrison
Stephen MacKenna as John Lennon
Rod Culbertson as Paul McCartney
Ray Ashcroft as Ringo Starr
Ryan Michael as Pete Best
David Nicholas Wilkinson as Stuart Sutcliffe
Brian Jameson as Brian Epstein
British director Richard Marquand graduated from BBC documentaries to dramatized features with 1979's Birth of the Beatles. This chronicle of the Fab Four begins when the group consisted of five musicians: John Lennon (Stephen MacKenna), Paul McCartney (Rod Culbertson), George Harrison (John Altman), Stu Sutcliffe (David Wilkinson), and Pete Best (Ryan Michael). The group begins its career in the dregs of a Hamburg, Germany nightclub (most of the film was made on location). Under the tutelage of manager Brian Epstein (Brian Jameson), the group sheds its rough-hewn image in favor of choirboy haircuts and Eton collars; along the way, Sutcliffe dies and drummer Best is replaced by Richard Starkey, (aka Ringo Starr, played here by Ray Ashcroft). First aired in the U.S. on November 23, 1979, Birth of the Beatles is significant as the only Beatle biopic made while John Lennon was still alive
A couple of screen shots from the movie
Set of 6 Italian Posters for 'Birth of the Beatles'
'Birth of the Beatles' was never officially released on DVD but copies of the movie are available from time to time on ebay and other various auction sites.
Below are just a couple of the professional looking covers that have been produced!!!
A European version exists, and is a different cut from the American version.
The following changes were made to the European version:
1.Some of the dialogue and text in this version is different.
2.The opening narration is now done by a British narrator, with the opening text superimposed on a black screen as opposed to a blue screen.
3.The prologue, which includes John saying that he wants to see Mickey Mouse is omitted.
4.The opening theme song is "My Bonnie" instead of "She Loves You".
5.A scene in an art school with a naked woman is included.
6.The scenes where the Beatles perform at Der Kaiserkeller are longer. They also include two additional song scenes: "Kansas City" and "Shake, Rattle and Roll" (the former has them trip on the stage floor, while the latter has them break it).
7.The scene where they find Stuart badly beaten has extra dialogue. It also fleshes out Stuart's refusal to see a doctor even more, unlike the regular versions where it abruptly cuts right after John says "Let's get him to a hospital", making the viewer think that Stuart went to a hospital after he got badly beaten, when it is clear that he did not.
8.The scene where Stuart and Astrid have their moment in bed together is different. The other version has him showing her her new necklace, while this version, has the two of them making love to each other.
9.John's bedroom scene with Stuart has extra shots of the others in bed.
10.The scene where they first talk to Brian Epstein is a little bit longer.
11.The scene where Brian goes to find the Beatles performing "Love Me Do" at a venue is longer.
12.The scene where Brian goes to tell the Beatles about George Martin and EMI, has him getting out of a taxi.
13.In the scene where Cynthia tells John about expecting a baby, John asks her "What are we gonna call him?"
14.The scene where the Beatles arrive at New York City is longer.
15.The end credits feature "She Loves You", instead of "My Bonnie".
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The Full Uncut Version!!!