Interview for Evening Standard • Wednesday, December 27, 1967

Maybe we goofed, says Beatle Paul

Press interview • Interview of Paul McCartney
Published by:
Evening Standard
Interview by:
Ray Connolly
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Interview

‘I suppose if you look at it from the point of view of good Boxing Day entertainment we goofed really,’ said Paul McCartney speaking today after reading the almost universally scorching criticisms of the Beatles’ first television film, Magical Mystery Tour. Although the film was a joint Beatle venture it was Paul who had the most interest in it, and Paul who was the director.

‘My dad brought the bad news into me this morning like the figure of doom. Perhaps the newspapers are right, perhaps we’re right. We’ll have to wait and see.

‘Of course, we could have got together a good director and editor, even some good song writers, and asked them to produce a first class show for Christmas with the Beatles in it. It would have been the easiest thing in the world. Perhaps we should have done it that way, but we wanted to do it ourselves.

‘I know it wasn’t the slickest job and may have looked a bit amateur, but I still think it better that we try ourselves, and that we try to present the viewers with something different from all the phoney tinsel of Christmas shows.’

The reaction to the show, which 12 million viewers saw last night, does, of course, pose the inevitable question: ‘have the Beatles finally overreached themselves?’

The problem for them is that everything they do is in public. The very fact that they are Beatles doesn’t allow for private error.

The criticism will do us all the good in the world,’ admitted Paul. ‘Recently everything we’ve done has automatically been a success. All our records have been at number one, and we had the feeling that there wasn’t any challenge any more.

‘The reaction to the film will now present us with a challenge. If our first film had got rave reviews from everyone there wouldn’t have been any point in doing another. Next year we’ll be producing and directing our first feature film, but next time there’ll be more planning to it. That was one of the troubles with Magical Mystery Tour. We didn’t do enough planning before we began it.

‘But I’m surprised at an awful lot of the criticism. It was accused of being disjointed, but we meant to make it like that. We could have qualified everything and explained everything, but we thought, “No, we don’t have to labour the point; people aren’t so thick”.’


From Amazon.com: The Ray Connolly Beatles Archive eBook : Connolly, Ray: Kindle Store

Last updated on April 28, 2022

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