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Never before seen John and Yoko film footage discovered








Dan Glaister in Los Angeles
Thursday April 24, 2008
The Guardian  





Lennon and Ono at Tittenhurst Park estate in 1970





Lennon and Ono at Tittenhurst Park estate in 1970, around the time the footage was shot Photograph: George Konig/Rex Features











At the height of their fame, John Lennon and Yoko Ono liked to let the world see the most intimate details of their lifestyle.
Reporters would be invited to interview the couple in bed, the couple’s songs told of their mutual fascination, and they were happy to let it all hang out in public. Their life became their art.

But almost 40 years later, Ono is trying to prevent the release of a piece of that art.

The 75-year-old artist and widow of Lennon is suing a Massachusetts company that wants to release a film culled from footage shot at Lennon’s estate in 1970 that has never been seen by the public.

The nine hours of footage, shot by Yoko’s previous husband, Anthony Cox, show the couple fooling around and getting on with their lives at home. Lennon is seen smoking marijuana, joking with Ono, composing songs, including Mind Games, and talking about putting LSD in President Nixon’s tea during a visit to the White House.

In one scene, Lennon blow-dries Ono’s hair as Bob Dylan’s Just Like a Woman plays in the background.

For nostalgia-fixated Beatles fans, the film offers an unparalleled insight into the mood of the couple just weeks before the Beatles finally broke up.

The footage was shot from February 8-11 1970 at Lennon’s Tittenhurst Park estate near Ascot, where much of the footage for the Imagine video was shot.


Paul McCartney announced the break-up of the Beatles in April of that year, although the group was not formally dissolved until 1975.

“It’s the holy grail for Beatles fans,”

said Michael Hill, music director for the film.

“It’s stuff you never see. It’s priceless.”

World Wide Video, the consortium of Beatles collectors that claims it owns the footage, has edited it down to a two-hour documentary titled 3 Days in the Life.

The company describes the film as “intimate and no-holds-barred”.

But plans to show the film last year were put on hold after lawyers for Ono issued a stop order, claiming that she owned the copyright to the material.

Next week, a judge in Boston will hear preliminary arguments in the case. Ono has sued World Wide Video, arguing that “the world [is] on notice” of her ownership of the footage, according to court papers obtained by the Boston Herald.

World Wide Video is counter-suing, arguing that it owns copyright to the material.

The company says it bought 24 original videotapes and 10 copies from Cox in 2000 for more than $1m. But shortly afterwards, the tapes were stolen.

The following year the company filed a suit against a New Hampshire man who agreed to return the copies and locate the originals.

Ono contends that she bought the originals from World Wide through a Florida man for $300,000.

“The decision that should be made in the case is who in fact does have the copyright,” said Joseph Doyle, World Wide’s lawyer. “We’re saying that we legitimately own the copyright.”

Cox, who married Ono in 1963, was a fellow avant garde artist and film-maker. The couple collaborated on several projects under the auspices of the Fluxus movement, including No 4, also known as Bottoms, a short film that consisted entirely of shots of people’s bottoms.

Ono went on to make a more celebrated, 80-minute version of the same film. The couple divorced in 1969.

The disputed black-and-white footage shot by Cox was for a documentary he intended to make.

Jonathan Albano, a lawyer representing Ono in Boston, refused to comment ahead of next week’s scheduled hearing.

4 Responses to “Never before seen John and Yoko film footage discovered”

  1. John Lennon at Tittenhurst Park.
    Great Blog,
    full of many interesting facts and stories,
    and pact full of excellent photographs
    and super images of John,
    Yoko and The beatles!

  2. Such a nice comment Babidji,
    Thank You so much!


  3. Great Website!

  4. Thank You so much Ken,
    and Thank You for reading


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