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Disney wanted to remove swearing from ‘The Beatles: Get Back’ but the band refused

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Peter Jackson has said Disney wanted to remove all swearing from his The Beatles: Get Back documentary, but were convinced otherwise by Ringo Starr and Paul McCartney.

  • READ MORE: ‘The Beatles: Get Back’ documentary: what you need to know before watching

The director’s three-part film charts the making of the band’s penultimate studio album ‘Let It Be’, and shows their final concert on London’s Savile Row rooftop in its entirety.

Speaking to NME, Jackson recalled Starr and McCartney’s first reactions to the documentary, who, to the director’s surprise, didn’t ask for any changes to be made.

“When they got to see the finished thing, I was expecting notes,” Jackson said. “It would’ve just been normal to get a note saying: ‘Oh, that bit where I say that – could you cut that out?’ Or ‘could you shorten the conversation there?’ And I didn’t get a single note. Not one request to do anything.

“One of them said that they watched it and found it one of the most stressful experiences of their entire life. ‘But I’m not gonna give you any notes.’”

Jackson described how the “truthful” aspect was very important to the band, who, along with George Harrison’s former wife Olivia, refuted suggested changes by Disney to remove all the swearing.

“Paul describes it as being very raw,” Jackson added. “He said to me: ‘That is a very accurate portrayal of how we were then.’ Ringo said: ‘It’s truthful.’ The truthfulness of it is important to them. They don’t want a whitewash. They don’t want it to be sanitised.

“Disney wanted to remove all the swearing and Ringo, Paul and Olivia said: ‘That’s how we spoke. That’s how we talked. That’s how we want the world to see us.’”

In NME’s five-star review, The Beatles: Get Back is described as a “long and winding but utterly unmissable epic” which succeeds because of its “lax editorial policy”.

The Beatles: Get Back is available to stream on Disney+ in the UK.

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