Dennis O’Dell with the Beatles
Photo: Getty Images, Michael Ochs Archives. All rights reserved.
Denise O’Dell died on December 30 at the age of 98. The filmmaker and director was best known for his films about the Beatles. The filmmaker died of natural causes overnight at his home in Almeria, Spain. His son Aran confirmed this to the “Associated Press”.
From “A Hard Day’s Night” to “The Beatles: Get Back”
O’Dell’s work with the Beatles began in 1964, when he produced the band’s first film, A Hard Day’s Night. This laid the foundation for many years of cooperation. That same year, O’Dell also produced the TV film “Magical Mystery Tour” with the Beatles. The Fab Four also had ideas for other joint film projects. Adaptations of “Lord of the Rings” and “The Three Musketeers” are included. A film adaptation of a funny script by Joe Orton was also in the news. Lennon and Company may have played assassins in disguise. According to O’Dell, these projects were doomed to failure from the start.
In later years, O’Dell became director of the Beatles company Apple Corps and head of Apple Films. O’Dell’s memory of his time with the band appeared in 2003 with “At the Apple’s Core: The Beatles from the Inside”. His most recent productions include the documentary “The Beatles: Get Back”.
The Beatles also honored O’Dell in a song
Apart from work, the filmmaker was a good friend of the British. There is also a reference to O’Dell in the Beatles song “You Know My Name (Look Up the Number)”. For fun, Lennon introduced McCartney as a lounge singer named Denise O’Bell. Not impressed by the changed spelling, many fans of the band took the song’s title literally. He researched O’Dell’s personal number and then called him any time of day.
“There were so many that my wife almost lost her mind. None of us knew why all of a sudden it happened. Then I was at home on a Sunday and I picked up the phone myself. It was someone on LSD who did a job in Philadelphia. Called the candle factory and kept saying, ‘We know your name and now we have your number,'” O’Dell told writer Steve Turner about it.
The filmmaker is survived by wife Donna and two daughters and two sons. There are also thirteen grandchildren, including “Black Mirror” and “The Paramedic” producer Dennis Pedregosa. The family is planning a private memorial service in the UK later.
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