Beatles TV special Nov. 17 on ABC Update (11/22/00) "The Beatles Revolution" will be repeated this week on VH1. Here's their press release for it:

VH1 Partners With ABC to Present 'The Beatles Revolution,Part Documentary, Part Musical Celebration of History's Most Influential Band,Premiering Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, November 23 at 8:00 p.m.ET/PT)

NEW YORK -- VH1 will air the ABC special "The Beatles Revolution" on Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, November 23, at 8:00 p.m. (ET/PT). Part musical celebration, part documentary, "The Beatles Revolution" examines how much of the world we know in 2000 was inspired by the ideas the Beatles popularized during the six years they commanded the world's attention. Provocative, contemporary insights from the most influential voices in music, entertainment, film, literature and politics highlight the two-hour special. "The Beatles Revolution" is a co-production of ABC Entertainment and VH1.

The broadcast is part of an agreement that is the latest in VH1's ongoing strategy to work with broadcasters in promoting special event programming in exchange for early rebroadcast windows.

The Beatles' impact on the music world was sudden and explosive. But that was only the beginning: The Beatles ended up sparking a cultural revolution in the way we look, feel and even think. "The Beatles Revolution" captures the sights and sounds of a band and an era, featuring classic Beatles songs plus never-before-seen film footage gathered from around the world, culled from the Beatles' own archives and from private collections.

In addition, "The Beatles Revolution" is a portrait of the movers and shakers of today, our current heroes, who talk about the remarkable influence the band had, both on them as individuals and on the world around us. Interviews include (among others) Tim Allen, Jeff Bezos, Bono, Phil Collins, Dick Clark, Cameron Crowe, Chuck D., Marianne Faithful, Milos Forman, Al Green, Matt Groening, Tom Hayden, Tommy Hilfiger, Kate Hudson, Eric Idle, Mick Jagger, Michael Kamen, Ken Kesey, Lenny Kravitz, George Martin, Ricky Martin, Mike Myers, N'Sync, Meshell Ndgeocello, JK Rawling, Keith Richards, Smokey Robinson, Salman Rushdie, Anoushka Shankar, The Spice Girls, Sting, Pete Townshend, Christy Turlington, Twiggy, Wendy Wasserstein and Jann Wenner.

In 1963, while England was being transformed by a phenomenon called Beatlemania, the United States -- a world of crew cuts, Bermuda shorts and "Leave It To Beaver" -- was shaken by the assassination of a beloved president. In a world where timing is everything, the darkness lifted just three months later when the Beatles' youthful energy and optimism were broadcast to the nation on "The Ed Sullivan Show." It was the musical equivalent of "The Big Bang," and the cultural universe it set in motion is still expanding today. The Beatles were initially seen as the latest in a long line of teen idols, harmless fun for kids. But they refused to stay in the box designed for them, and by the day in 1965 when John Lennon declared the band was "bigger than Jesus," the culture wars had begun.

The Beatles were the nexus of pop music and the worlds of film, art, fashion and politics. London was the center of the world, and the Beatles were the epicenter. The band traveled to India to study Transcendental Meditation, and took the interest of a generation with them. They helped popularize ideas about yoga, meditation, health food and more, and the New Age followed. But the Beatles also contained all the contradictions of their audience: John Lennon's psychedelic Rolls-Royce was the proto-yuppie status symbol. And the band's incredible worldwide popularity laid the groundwork for today's celebrity mania -- and its dark side, reflected in Charles Manson's obsession with "Helter Skelter" and ultimately, Lennon's murder by a deranged fan.

"The Beatles Revolution" is co-produced by ABC Entertainment and VH1. The co-executive producers are Rudy Bednar, Bill Flanagan and David Saltz.

Incidentally, several people have told us that VH1 is repeating the show at 10 p.m., but it wasn't listed in advance TV listings.

Update (11/18/00) BBC: Beatles brought down communism (thanks to Wendy Starr)

Update (11/16/00) We've seen an advance tape of the show. The music clips are edited and it contains few Beatle comments. It seemed strange to us to see some of those interviewed, but the show does contain some interesting comments by Pete Townshend and Keith Richards (whiskey glass in hand). Overall, we'd rate it two stars out of four. Links to info about the special: http://www.electricartists.com/beatles/abc-beatles.html, with video at http://www.electricartists.com/beatles/beatlesABCvideo.html. And there's also http://abc.go.com/primetime/specials/beatles/beatles_home.html.

Update (10/31/00) The press release for the special:

ABC's "The Beatles Revolution" Looks At The Most Influential Band In Pop History, Friday, Nov. 17

Provocative, contemporary insights from the most influential voices in music, entertainment, film, literature and politics highlight "The Beatles Revolution," an all-new, two-hour special airing FRIDAY, NOV. 17 (8:00-10:00 p.m., ET), on the ABC Television Network.

From the network that brought viewers the groundbreaking "The Beatles Anthology," "The Beatles Revolution" -- part musical celebration, part documentary -- examines how much of the world we know in 2000 was inspired by the ideas the Beatles popularized during the six years they commanded the world's attention. The special is also a portrait of the movers and shakers of today, our current heroes, who talk about the remarkable influence the band had, both on them as individuals and on the world around them.

Along with these fresh insights, "The Beatles Revolution" captures the sights and sounds of a band and an era, with classic Beatles songs that still sound new today, and with never-before-seen film footage gathered from around the world, culled from the exclusive Apple archives and from private collections.

Interviews (in alphabetical order) include Buzz Aldrin, Tim Allen, Ben and Jerry, Jeff Bezos, Bono, Ed Burns, Phil Collins, Cameron Crowe, Clive Davis, Marianne Faithful, Milos Forman, Al Green, Matt Groening, Tom Hayden, Tommy Hilfiger, Kate Hudson, Eric Idle, Michael Kamen, Ken Kesey, Lenny Kravitz, John Lasseter, Mike Love, George Martin, Ricky Martin, Mike Myers, 'N Sync, Meshell Ndgeocello, Yury Pelyushonok, Keith Richards, Salman Rushdie, Anoushka Shankar, Sting, Pete Townshend, Christy Turlington, Twiggy, Tony Tyler, Wendy Wasserstein and Jann Wenner.

The special opens in pre-Beatles America, a world of crew cuts, Bermuda shorts and "Leave It to Beaver." But in 1963, while England was being transformed by a phenomenon called Beatlemania, the United States was shaken by the assassination of a beloved president.

In a world where timing is everything, the darkness lifted just three months later when the Beatles' youthful energy and optimism were broadcast to the nation on "The Ed Sullivan Show." It was the musical equivalent of "The Big Bang" and the cultural universe it set into motion is still expanding today. The Beatles were initially seen as the latest in a long line of teen idols, harmless fun for kids. But the Beatles refused to stay in the box designed for them, and by the day in 1965 when John Lennon declared the band "bigger than Jesus," the culture wars were on.

The Beatles were at the center of a new crossover between pop music and the worlds of film, art, fashion and politics. If London was the center of the world, the Beatles were the epicenter. The band traveled to India to study Transcendental Meditation . . . and took the interest of a generation with them. They helped popularize ideas about yoga, meditation and health food. But the Beatles contained all the contradictions of their audience. John Lennon's psychedelic Rolls Royce was the proto-yuppie status symbol. And the band's incredible worldwide popularity laid the groundwork for today's celebrity mania -- and its dark side . . . reflected in Charles Manson's eerie interest in the "White Album" and, ultimately, John Lennon's murder by a deranged fan.

Rudy Bednar ("Hopkins 24/7," "Vanished"), Bill Flanagan (VH1's "Legends," VH1's "Storytellers") and David Saltz ("The Beatles Anthology," "ABC In Concert") are co-executive producers, and Richard Gerdau ("The Century: America's Time") and Oren Jacoby ("The Irish In America") are producers of this special, co-produced by ABC Entertainment and VH1. (CLOSED-CAPTIONED) (Broadcast in stereo where available)

(10/25/00) A two-hour ABC-TV special on the Beatles airs from 8-10 p.m. ET in the U.S. on Nov. 17. ABC's description says, "From the producers of the groundbreaking "The Beatles Anthology," this all-new special examines how much of the world we know in 2000 was inspired by the Beatles. Interviews include Ben and Jerry, Phil Collins, Cameron Crowe, Marianne Faithful, Kate Hudson, Lenny Kravitz, Ricky Martin, Mike Myers, 'N Sync, Keith Richards, Salman Rushdie, Sting, Pete Townshend, Christy Turlington and Jann Wenner." Also interviewed, reports the AP, are Beatles producer George Martin, plus Bono, Phil Collins, Al Green and Mike Love of the Beach Boys. (Thanks to Steve Frank, Amanda Beoletto and John Whelan.)
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