Lady Madonna

Promotional film • For The Beatles • Directed by Tony Bramwell
Timeline This film has been released in 1968
Release date:
Mar 14, 1968
Filming date:
Feb 11, 1968
Filming location:
EMI Studios, Abbey Road, London, UK

Related song


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About

The promotional clip was filmed when the Beatles recorded “Hey Bulldog” in the recording studio. If the intention was to film The Beatles miming “Lady Madonna“, the end results show them playing “Hey Bulldog“.

On February 11, they recorded Hey Bulldog at Abbey Road, while I filmed the entire process. We didn’t need any promo material for Bulldog, but Paul had also recorded Lady Madonna, the song he had written in memory of his mother, which did need some promotional film. I cut the Bulldog shoot, using the bits of the lads playing and sitting about in the studio, and we used that. Then it vanished, completely disappeared. We thought it had been stolen, as things often were if not nailed down. Over thirty years later, in August 1999, my original film was rediscovered and used with a reissue of Bulldog to go with the revamped digital version of Yellow Submarine.

Tony Bramwell – from “Magical Mystery Tours”

Three versions of the “Lady Madonna” clip were done:

In fact, three separate clips were edited from the footage, and variously included effects such as filters, double exposures, and extra material filmed at the session for Cilla Black’s song Step Inside Love, written by Paul McCartney and recorded in November 1967.

The most common Lady Madonna clip begins with an overhead shot of Ringo Starr on drums, and ends with footage of McCartney from the Step Inside Love session, picking up his coat and guitar and leaving the studio. A lesser-seen variation begins with Starr in a coat and tie and features George Harrison eating a plate of beans.

A third version was created for Anthology in the 1990s, combining elements from both clips plus footage from the 30 July 1968 session for Hey Jude.

From 11 February 1968: Recording, mixing: Hey Bulldog (beatlesbible.com)

The “Lady Madonna” clip was first shown on BBC TV’s Top Of The Pops on March 14, 1968, but it’s unclear which version it was. The second version (with George Harrison eating beans) was first shown on German TV on March 9, 1968.

In 1999, a promo clip for “Hey Bulldog” was finally done using the footage done for the “Lady Madonna” clip.

Last updated on September 30, 2021

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