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08th September, 2020

The Beatles Story to feature in Beatles' Documentary narrated by Morgan Freeman

Meeting The Beatles In India, a documentary about The Beatles’ historic 1968 trip to study Transcendental Meditation in Rishikesh, partially filmed at our award-winning exhibition and narrated by Morgan Freeman, is set for its world premiere in September 2020.  

The film features more than 40 previously unseen photos from The Beatles’ stay in India from filmmaker Paul Saltzman, who happened to be at the ashram as the same time as the fab four.

There are interviews, some filmed at our exhibition, with others who were at the retreat too, including Pattie Boyd (former wife of George Harrison), her sister Jenny Boyd, and the real life ‘Bungalow Bill’.

At the time, Saltzman was a young Canadian filmmaker there to heal a recently broken heart while seeking his own path to understanding and enlightenment.

He arrived without knowing The Beatles were there and he had to wait outside the gates for eight days before eventually being invited in and taught meditation. It took less than five minutes, and his first 30-minute meditation was ‘a miracle’ that healed the agony of his heartbreak. 

He soon met John, Paul, George and Ringo, who took him into their informal group of the four of them; their partners, Pattie Boyd, Cynthia Lennon, Maureen Starkey and Paul’s girlfriend, Jane Asher. Also, in the group were Mia Farrow, Donovan, Mike Love and the Beatle’s roadie, Mal Evans. 

Paul spent the next week just ‘hanging out’ with The Beatles, and in the informal and relaxed atmosphere of the ashram, and their warm welcome, he captured some of the most famous and intimate photographic portraits ever taken of the Fab Four from Liverpool.

When Paul returned home to Canada, he shared his story with a leading magazine before putting the pictures away, actually forgetting about them. 32 years later his daughter, Devyani Saltzman, reminded him he had these images and suggested he do something with them…

Narrated by Morgan Freeman who features in blockbusters such as The Shawshank Redemption and The Dark Knight, the film weaves together archival material with insightful interviews to give a never-before-seen look into The Beatles’ time in India.

We took our own trip to Rishikesh ahead of the installation of our Beatles In India display in 2017.

Diane Glover, Marketing Manager at The Beatles Story visited the Maharishi’s ashram, and said: 

“The remains of the Maharishi’s Ashram, overlooking the Holy River Ganges, still stand and it is clearly a place of peace and seclusion.

“The 1968 visit was an important time of reflection for The Beatles as their manager, Brian Epstein had sadly passed away in the summer of 1967, and they escaped away from their fans and the media in search of spirituality”.

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