The Beatles are back with a “new” song and an accompanying documentary streaming now exclusively on Disney+.
Now And Then – The Last Beatles Song tells the story of “Now and Then,” a surprise single from the Beatles that was released last week. Originally written by John Lennon as a solo track for himself, the song was never completed before his death and floated around in limbo until Paul McCartney revived it last year with the help of AI — and the help of his surviving bandmates.
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Now And Then – The Last Beatles Song reveals just how the song came together, with exclusive footage and commentary from McCartney, Ringo Starr, George Harrison, Sean Ono Lennon and Peter Jackson, who directed the music video for the track.
The 12-minute documentary film, meantime, is written and directed by Oliver Murray, who also directed 2022’s My Life As A Rolling Stone and the recent Disney+ special, Lang Lang Plays Disney.
You can watch the Beatles’ Now and Then documentary with a subscription to Disney+, starting at just $7.99. Your Disney+ subscription lets you watch the new Beatles’ short film on your phone, tablet, computer or TV through the Disney+ app.
Per Disney+, “The eventful journey of Now And Then took place over five decades,” with a description for the short film adding that, “the long mythologized John Lennon demo was first worked on in February 1995 by Paul, George and Ringo as part of The Beatles Anthology project but it remained unfinished, partly because of the impossible technological challenges involved in working with the vocal John had recorded on tape in the 1970s.”
But the song finally came to fruition in 2022, thanks to a software system developed by Jackson for the production of the documentary series The Beatles: Get Back (also streaming on Disney+). Per Disney, the technology was able to “uncouple” Lennon’s vocal from the piano part, which then opened the way for the remaining members to add their voices and instruments to the mix. The “new” track marks the completion of the last recording that the Beatles will get to make together.
Now and Then [12″ Vinyl]
“The legacy of The Beatles set one of the most important foundations for modern youth culture,” Murray says, in a press release. “It is a great honor to be given the responsibility of telling this story and I think it will conjure up a lot of different emotions for people as we all have a very personal relationship to the band’s work. ‘Now And Then’ is a story of musical archaeology and a brotherly bond between four guys that gave the world some of the most popular entertainment in history.”
Fans can find a limited-edition vinyl single of the Beatles “Now and Then” on Amazon. You can watch the making-of film, meantime, on Disney+. While other streamers offer a free trial, Disney+ doesn’t currently any free trials on its own site. Want to watch the Beatles’ short film online for free? Select Verizon customers can get “Disney+ On Us” through certain unlimited plans. See if your plan qualifies here.
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