ABOUT THIS INTERVIEW:
In May 1965, the following interview was conducted with the Beatles to promote their second feature film entitled, 'Help!' The Beatles were in the process of completing post-production work
on the movie at Twickenham Studios during this time.
Copies of the following recorded interview were later sent to radio stations. It was created to be an 'Open-end' interview -- meaning that once the interview was recorded, the questions were edited out so that local disc jockeys could read scripted questions along with the recording to sound as if they were personally conducting the interview.
- Jay Spangler, www.beatlesinterviews.org
Q: "We're on location with the Beatles, and they're here to tell us about an exciting new movie. Tell us where we're talking from this time."
JOHN: We're just talking on the set of the film we just finished in Nassau, Bahamas."
BEATLES: (shouting) "'Help!' 'Help!'"
Q: "John, where did this title come from -- 'Help'?"
JOHN: "It came from out of Dick Lester's mouth, it came. Our director, friends."
RINGO: "I thought it came out of his shoe."
GEORGE: "Well, Dick sort of slowly went up to us, one at a time, punching us, saying 'It's gonna be called HELP!' And we said, 'Yeah, that's a great idea, Dick, sir... sir. We'll call it that.' And that's how it all became about."
Q: "Why did you have so much trouble with the title, Paul? I know you had a different title first. What made 'Help' the final title?"
PAUL: "Uhh, 'cuz it was about the best, I'd say. It just sounds right, you know. That's why. 'Help!' There you are."
GEORGE: "It fits the story because, you see, people are trying to get us all through it. And so, we need a bit of help, you see."
PAUL: "That's right."
Q: "This second picture, John, how does it differ from the first one you made?"
JOHN: "Well, it's in color, for a start. And, I don't know, there's alot more happening in this. There's a story, you see. In the last one it was just sort of documentary, but this is a real film, almost."
Q: "Did you have any different problems in this one, George, other than in 'A Hard Day's Night'?"
GEORGE: "A couple of more problems. (laughs) A couple of more, yes. Because, for a start, we had a big idol... and lots of trick things, you see. Whereas we didn't have any trick things in the last film."
PAUL: "Yeah, the business about the idol was that, umm, it was supposed to rise from the water, you see, as a sort of trick..."
JOHN: "And it wouldn't."
PAUL: "...and it wouldn't 'cuz the water was always too rough for it. So we've had a bit of trouble with that."
Q: "Does this idol have anything to do with you, Ringo?"
RINGO: "Uhh, yeah. Yeah. I can't tell you what the plot is, but here are some of the questions that we answered. (reads) 'Why were the high priests of the terrible goddess of Kaili interested in the Beatles? What did they want of him? They weren't fans. Two leading scientists hope to rule the world. Paul is threatened by a Beetle-- B, double-E, T, L, E.'"
Q: "What happened to you in this picture, Ringo?"
RINGO: "I'm chased by a gang of thugs all the way through it actually."
JOHN: "Yeah, they seem to be chasing Ringo. (reads) 'There's two leading scientists who hope to rule the world.' (giggles) 'And an Eastern beauty saves all our lives from time to time,' it says here."
GEORGE: "All I can say is, 'Will John live to sleep in his pit again?'"
PAUL: "Right! Or, for instance, 'Will Paul ever get back to his united organ?'-- Electric organ, I mean."
Q: "You're kind of veteran movie stars at this point. Do you like this business of making movies, Paul? Is it difficult for you?"
PAUL: "Umm, I think all of us really enjoy it. It's something different, you know. We've all forgotten about how difficult it was, or hard it was sort of standing 'round the set all day. You forget about things like that. And it's just nice to be doing something like a film, which is a completely new thing for us, really, you know-- we've only ever done one before this one. It's just good seeing rushes and seeing a film get together, and seeing it sort of make itself, you know. Yes, very exciting. Lovely."
Q: "And John, this movie brings us more great songs from the Beatles, too."
JOHN: "There's about seven... I'm not sure. Paul and I wrote eleven and we chose seven out of the eleven."
Q: "I suppose there is a title song."
JOHN: "Yeah, it's called 'Help!,' you know. We think it's one of the best we've written."
PAUL: "Sung at the beginning and the end of the picture-- made at United Artists with the help of Walter Shenson and Dick Lester... one or two people we ought to plug."
Q: "George, how do you go with this movie making career? How do you take to this business of making movies, getting up early in the morning, getting the make-up, and so forth?"
GEORGE: "That's a bit of a drag-- getting up in the morning. But umm, apart from that and the waiting 'round, it's great fun. We have a great laugh. Don't we, fellas?"
PAUL: "Yes. Yes we do."
JOHN: "Yes we do."
RINGO: "Yeah it's great except, as George said, getting up in the morning. We hate getting up, you know. It's always difficult to do something you hate."
PAUL: "Especially when you go to bed about three in the morning, it's very difficult to get up at six. (jokingly) However, as we never go to bed at three in the morning..."
JOHN: "We only go to bed at five."
PAUL: (jokingly) "'Cuz we always go to bed at late evening. No, you know, it's difficut when you go to bed late. Some nights you do, some nights you don't. There you go."
Q: "Ringo, you're a newlywed. What do you expect out of marriage?"
RINGO: "What do I expect? I don't expect anything. I just love being married, you know, and I love my wife. I just want her to be there all the time when I'm there, you know. Now there's no one that can say, 'She can't do this and she can't do that,' you know. If we want to go anywhere or do anything, I'm the boss-- we just do it. There's no one to tell us anything else now. It's marvelous, you know, 'cuz we both belong to each other, and you can share everything. It's a great thing being married. you know I enjoy it. Well, I mean, I shouldn't sort of-- I'm not an authority on it. (laughs) I've only been married a month. But umm, you know, I love it. It's something you can't explain, you know. It's only people who get married who know this thing."
Q: "John, tell me. Where has this taken you-- this second Beatles picture?"
JOHN: "Well, it took us to the Bahamas, Nassau. And we've been to Austria, that was great. And most of it was done in London for us which is also great."
Q: "George, do you like this traveling around to different places?"
GEORGE: "It's not bad at all, when you're making a film."
Q: "John, does this traveling around and doing one-night appearances ever become a drag?"
JOHN: "No. If there were no kids I think it would be a drag, you know. We'd say, 'What's happened!' We'd say-- How would we say it?"
PAUL: "We'd say--"
BEATLES: (in unison) "What's happened!"
PAUL: "There's not half as much excitement when there's just nobody around, you know. I mean, it's nice occasionally to get a quiet spell. For instance, when we were in the Bahamas, you know, that was nice and quiet. And Austria-- pretty quiet. But doing tours and things, you know, that's always more hectic. But it's still good. It's good in a different way, you know-- like making films is good and making records is good, but in different ways."
Q: "But there must be times when this hectic life gets to be too much. In fact, a recent article said that you are even rude at times."
JOHN: "Uhh, the article is right. We've been quoted as being rude to people. We're always rude BACK, you know. And we're no more cynical than we ever were, it's just that..."
RINGO: "There's people writing about it now."
JOHN: "...you know, people notice us being cynical because we're public figures, but we've always had the same attitude. We always disliked the same kind of people as we did years ago."
PAUL: "But if someone comes up to us and is rude to us, then we'd be idiots to sort of stand there and smile as they were being rude to us, you know. I mean, nobody is gonna take that. And it doesn't matter if they're a public figure or anything. You know, you're just stupid if you don't do something in return. It's okay turning the other cheek, you know. But (laughs) your cheek doesn't oft get smashed up that way."
JOHN: "A woman came up and says, 'I've got a so-and-so year old daughter. But I couldn't care less me-self.' You know, something like that. And I thought it was pretty rude, seeing as we were eating at the time as well-- in the middle of a meal. So we were just a bit cold towards her. And she probably thought we had no right to be, but she forgets that we're human, you see."
Q: "At what point do you get used to a phenomenon like this?"
GEORGE: "At first, everything was going too quick anyway. We didn't even have enough time to think of what was happening. We just did it, and then suddenly we realized that we were selling records and things. But you know, apart from that, we never thought too much about it. We used to just see how many records were selling and that was it-- go and do a show-- but we never used to sit 'round and talk about how great we were. So you know, it's just a thing in the back of your head that you're what you are, and you're doing you're job, and that's it, you know."
Q: "Now that you've completed your second picture, you boys are not going to give up concerts, are you?"
PAUL: "No, of course not. We're doing a big tour, you know, in America-- uhh, I don't know how many cities-- but it'll be pretty hectic, you know. But it's all good fun. We enjoy it. Filming, making records, concerts. You know us-- a laugh a minute! Hah hah hah!"
JOHN: "Hah hah!"
Q: "When you're writing a song for the picture, do you write it for a particular scene?"
PAUL: "What happens is that we, uhh..."
GEORGE: "We just shove 'em in anywhere." (laughs)
PAUL: "Yeah. We just write the songs first, and then just shove 'em in anywhere, as George said. Especially in the sunset scene at the very end of the picture, where the two lovers-- that's George and Ringo-- are coming towards each other on the beach!"
PAUL: (chuckling) "And they just finally meet... well actually, they don't quite meet. They just run past each other and both dive into the sand."
JOHN: "They both light a cigarette."
PAUL: "Yeah, that's it. The sun goes down, and it's a sort of a big facade of Oriental beauty, you know what I mean."
JOHN: "Facade Harbuckle."
PAUL: "Facade Harbuckle. And then the whole picture just ends up..."
GEORGE: "You're telling them too much about the story..."
PAUL: "I'm sorry. I've..."
GEORGE: "They won't go and see it if you tell 'em all about that."
JOHN: "But tell 'em about the vintage car race!"
PAUL: "The vintage car race!"
JOHN: "Well, that's another scene where we all go from Brighton to Egg-mutton. And none of us win, unfortunately. And it just about ends there."
Q: "It sounds like fun. I want to thank all you boys for talking with us today. We're all looking forward to seeing you in your second motion picture, 'Help!'"
PAUL: "This is Paul McCartney saying thank you very much. We hope you all enjoy our film. It's been nice being on your show."
JOHN: "This is John Lennon saying thanks for everything-- enjoyed being on your show."
RINGO: "This is Ringo saying thanks for everything-- hope you enjoy the film and the songs from the film. We hope to see you all when we come to the states."
GEORGE: "And this is George saying goodbye to everybody who's been listening, and also to you for having us on your program. Thank you very much!"
Source: Transcribed by www.beatlesinterviews.org from audio copy of the interview