Paul McCartney has come clean about watching The Beatles inspired film Yesterday, admitting that he was never really confident in someone pulling it off saying it was a “terrible idea” but after watching it he said “loved it”.
The Danny Boyle directed film stars Himesh Patel as protagonist Jack Malik who after waking up in the hospital suddenly realises that he’s woken up in a world in which The Beatles have never existed. Malik goes on to ‘write’ The Beatles tunes and becomes a star.
While the storyline is captivating, McCartney admitted that he wasn’t so sure the film would ever get off the ground. He told Billboard, “That began when Richard Curtis, who [directed] Love Actually, wrote to me with the idea. And I thought, ‘This is a terrible idea’, but I couldn’t tell him, so I said, ‘Well, that sounds interesting – good luck,’”
“I didn’t think anything more of it. Then someone said Danny Boyle would direct it, and I thought, ‘They must think they can pull it off.’ And I thought nothing more of it until they asked if I wanted to see a screening.”
Macca politely declined the invite for the screening but then this summer in the Hamptons, McCartney and his wife saw the cinema listing for the flick and decided to take a punt. “I asked Nancy, and we said, ‘Let’s go, you and me, on a date to the cinema’.”
“We were in the Hamptons in the summer and there it was, so we got two tickets and walked in when the cinema went dark. Only a couple of people saw us. We were in the back row, giggling away, especially at all the mentions of Paul McCartney. A couple of people in front of us spotted us, but everyone else was watching the film. We loved it.”
He also gave Billboard an update on the previously announced musical adaptation of It’s A Wonderful Life which is set for the stage in 2020. He said, “The reason I never wanted to do a musical is I couldn’t think of a strong enough story. But a guy I’ve known since school in Liverpool became a theatrical impresario in London [Bill Kenwright], and he rang me up and said, ‘I’ve got the musical rights to It’s a Wonderful Life’. That’s a strong story.”
“So I met with the writer, Lee Hall, and I asked him to write the first 20 minutes of how he sees this as a play. So I was on holiday in the Hamptons, and I had lots of free time. So I read it and thought, ‘That’s a good opening, I like this’, and I sat at the piano and threw this melody at these dummy lyrics he had written. This was August. I sent it to them, and they said, ‘You’ve nailed it’. So it’s going well.”