Denis O’Dell death: The Beatles’ film producer dies
Mr O’Dell passed away at his house in Almeria where he had lived for 40 years, his daughter Denise O’Dell confirmed.
“He was an amazing man and perhaps an unsung hero of the Beatles era,” his daughter told The Independent.
He was an associate producer on the 1964 film A Hard Day’s Night, the band’s first film, and How I Won The War, in which John Lennon acted.
He also produced the 1967 film Magical Mystery Tour.
An accomplished film industry professional, he collaborated on some of the promotional videos for the band’s singles and was director of the film and publicity divisions of Apple.
According to his memoir, At the Apple’s Core: The Beatles from the Inside, he pushed hard to get the band to act in a film version of the JRR Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings trilogy. Despite his efforts, the project never came to fruition.
Mr O’Dell appears in Peter Jackson’s recent anthology Get Back, which has unearthed unseen film of the band just before they broke up.
He resigned as director of Apple Corps in 1969 to return to film production after the company was taken over by the Beatles manager Allen Klein.
He is perhaps best known to Beatles fans through an indirect reference in one of the group’s most obscure songs, “You Know My Name (Look Up the Number)”, which was the B-side of “Let It Be”.
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A couple of times, the song mentions a Denis O’Bell, a lyric that was taken to be inspired by the film producer.
Mr O’Dell is survived by his second wife Dona O’Dell, his daughter Denise, who is also a film producer, his son Arran, who is a pilot, and his children Shaun and Laragh.