Director-producer Ron Howard did double duty at last month’s big all-day Deadline event, The Contenders Emmys, which took place at the DGA Theatre in front of a packed audience of TV Academy voters. Previously we posted his discussion about the new series Genius his company Imagine is making, and now here is my conversation with the Oscar winner about the making of what is only his second documentary ever, Hulu’s The Beatles: Eight Days a Week — The Touring Years, which at the band’s request chronicles only those early years when they still played concerts.
But as Howard describes, the docu covers so much more ground that transcends those limitations. He compares his approach to the film to making Das Boot because it shows in never-before-seen detail the gauntlet they were put through. Howard says that, even with prime access to the music and the ability to enhance the mix better than past Beatle docus have, the goal was to tell a story and speak to two different audiences: the fans who grew up with the band as well as a new generation experiencing much of this footage for the first time.
He talks about getting permission from the two surviving members, Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr, along with Beatle widows Yoko Ono and Olivia Harrison, and how McCartney described the poignant, sometimes challenging relationship with John Lennon, finally revealing that he was like a brother. To hear our conversation, just click on the link above.