‘Let It Be’: 1970 Doc About The Beatles’ Last Album to Get Remastered Re-Release On Disney+

Let it Be

Michael Lindsay-Hogg’s 1970 documentary 'Let It Be' followed the Fab Four as they completed their final album – the cover of which is seen above. Photo: Courtesy of Disney+

Let It Be, Michael Lindsay-Hogg’s 1970 documentary on The Beatles that hit theatres a month after the band split, is getting a long-overdo re-release on Disney+.

Peter Jackson, the director who restored outtakes from that film for his 2021 docuseries The Beatles: Get Back, has used the same technology to remaster the look and sound of the original 16mm negative for the re-release, which will hit the steaming platform on May 8.

“I’m absolutely thrilled that Michael’s movie, Let It Be, has been restored and is finally being re-released after being unavailable for decades,” Jackson, 62, said in a press release. “I was so lucky to have access to Michael’s outtakes for Get Back, and I’ve always thought that Let It Be is needed to complete the Get Back story.

“Over three parts, we showed Michael and The Beatles filming a groundbreaking new documentary, and Let It Be is that documentary,” he added. “I now think of it all as one epic story, finally completed after five decades. Michael Lindsay-Hogg was unfailingly helpful and gracious while I made Get Back, and it’s only right that his original movie has the last word … looking and sounding far better than it did in 1970.”

Let It Be follows the Fab Four as they rehearse and record what would become their twelfth and final studio album. It also includes footage of their surprise 1969 concert on the rooftop of Apple Corps in London, a moment that was heavily featured in Jackson’s Get Back. The impromptu 42-minute concert, which was performed with keyboardist Billy Preston until local police intervened, was the group’s last public performance.

The Beatles performing their last live public concert, in 1969, on the rooftop of the Apple Organization building on London’s Savile Row, for director Michael Lindsey-Hogg’s film documentary, Let It Be. Photo: Express/Express/Getty Images


Lindsay-Hogg’s film hasn’t been in official circulation since the early 1980s and, while bootleg copies have been kicking around online, it never made it to release on DVD or Blu-Ray.

Meanwhile, Lindsay-Hogg, now 83, is looking forward to having the film viewed in a more nostalgic light.

“One month before its release, The Beatles officially broke up. And so the people went to see Let It Be with sadness in their hearts, thinking, ‘I’ll never see The Beatles together again. I will never have that joy again,’ and it very much darkened the perception of the film,” he said. “But, in fact, how often do you get to see artists of this stature working together to make what they hear in their heads into songs?

“And then you get to the roof, and you see their excitement, camaraderie, and sheer joy in playing together again as a group and know, as we do now, that it was the final time, and we view it with the full understanding of who they were and still are, and a little poignancy.”

The sad news of the group’s breakup ahead of the film’s release wasn’t the only factor contributing to the gloomy vibe of the doc. The colour scheme of the 16mm film made for a dark feel as well.

While Lindsay-Hogg says the remastered footage is “brighter and livelier,” he ensured some of his original aesthetic remained.

Let it Be
Photo: Courtesy of Disney+


“It looks now like it was intended to look in 1969 or 1970, although at my request, Peter did give it a more filmic look than Get Back, which had a slightly more modern and digital look,” he explained in an interview with the New York Times.

Meanwhile, the continued fandom and fascination around the Beatles isn’t fizzling out anytime soon. In February, it was announced that Oscar-winning director Sam Mendes would helm four separate feature films, each focussing on a different member of the Beatles. The films, which are planned for an integrated release in 2027, mark the first time Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, the families of John Lennon and George Harrison, and their company Apple Corps Ltd., have granted full life story and music rights for a scripted film.