Film shows Beatles "reunited" for Las Vegas show

Tue Jun 24, 2008 4:05pm EDT
 
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By Randall Mikkelsen

SILVER SPRING, Md (Reuters) - A new Beatles movie depicts surviving band members, widows and their producer reuniting to rise above a reputation for discord and collaborate on a lavish stage show with Cirque de Soleil.

The movie, "All Together Now," shows Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr working with Yoko Ono, George Harrison's widow Olivia and The Beatles' producer Sir George Martin to remix their music for the 21st century with the Las Vegas stage production of "Love."

"I wanted to tell this story about these people who are myths. They're mythic characters," said the film's Canadian director, Adrian Wills. "This was a way for them to sort of deal with their past in a way that was in the present."

The movie had its U.S. debut last week at the Silverdocs documentary film festival and was repeated by audience demand on Monday. Apple Corps Ltd executive Jonathan Clyde said there are only limited plans for more public showings, but a DVD release is in the pipeline.

"Love" is a $180 million show at a specially built theater at the Mirage Hotel. It opened in 2006. The Cirque de Soleil employs dance, acrobatics and fanciful staging to interpret the evolution of Beatles music from exuberant pop through utopian psychedelia, updating the 41-year old Sgt. Pepper's image with a high-tech sheen.

The idea sprang from the friendship of Beatle George Harrison, who died in 2001, and Cirque founder Guy Laliberte. Wills has filmed previous Cirque productions, and "All Together Now" was initially planned as a small-scale promotional film.

But Wills grew up a Beatles fan, and said he knew he was witnessing a rare moment following the band's bitter 1970 breakup. They were creating something new.

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<p>British musician Paul McCartney performs at the Liverpool Sound concert at Anfield stadium in Liverpool, northern England, June 1, 2008. REUTERS/Nigel Roddis</p>