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Beatles news: Ron Howard at Abbey Road Studios; Beatles tablecloth missing

Ron Howard in the Abbey Road zebra crossing Thursday
Richard Porter - used by permission

Ron Howard was at Abbey Road Studios and was on the Abbey Road crosswalk Thursday, according to Richard Porter of Beatles In who leads Beatles walks in London. “People on the London Beatles Walk today had an unexpected bonus! Just after we finished the tour, Ron Howard came out of Abbey Road Studios, and did the Ice Bucket Challenge on the Abbey Road Crossing!”

One of Porter's photos of Howard, in the famed Abbey Road zebra crossing where the Beatles once walked is on this page. Apple Corps Ltd., White Horse Pictures and Imagine Entertainment recently announced that Oscar winner on Howard is directing a new documentary for Apple on the Beatles' touring years. The film is being produced with the full cooperation of Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Yoko Ono Lennon and Olivia Harrison and will cover their live shows from the Cavern to the 1966 Candlestick Park show. Representatives from White Horse were at Paul McCartney's Candlestick show last week in connection with the project.

Denied parole: John Lennon's killer was denied parole for the eighth time Friday, reports the New York Daily. News. According to the paper, the board said, “the panel has determined that if released at this time, there is a reasonable probability that you would not live and remain at liberty without again violating the law.” He's eligible for parole again in two years.

Ringo was more than lucky: In a wonderful interview done by Deidre Kelly for Critics at Large, author Mark Lewisohn talks about how he came to write the first volume of his Beatles biography. He dismisses the notion that Ringo Starr was only lucky to have become a Beatle.

“When he had played for them a few times previously, just in guest slots, they loved the experience. And it was right with him and wrong without him. And also they liked his personality. He was strong and tough like they were. And he would stand no nonsense just as they also stood no nonsense. So, he was perfect for them. And he was perfect for them all the way through. And still is.”

Epstein tribute: A special performance of “Epstein: The Man Who Made The Beatles,” about the Beatles' manager Brian Epstein, will take place Aug. 27 at London’s Leicester Square Theatre on the anniversary of Epstein’s death. The show is currently midway through a six-week run, the play announced this week. A special post-show Q & A will take place at the evening's performance with actors Andrew Lancel and Will Finlason, co-producer and director Jen Heyes and Joe Flannery, lifelong friend and business partner of Brian Epstein.

The Q&A will be hosted by TV presenter Neil Sean and will discuss Epstein's life and contribution to popular music. A special show and Q & A ticket of £20 per person is available with the tag EPSTEIN20.

Where did it go?: An item by Leah Garchick in the San Francisco Chronicle Thursday provided a little historical correction to the long-held story that a tablecloth that the Beatles drew on the night of their 1966 San Francisco Candlestick Park concert had been previously sold. Garchick was contacted by Joanne Vilardi Bjork, whose father, Joe Vilardi, owned Simpson's Catering on Clement Street which had it after the show. Accoridng to Bjork, "the infamous tablecloth was naively displayed by my father in the window of his establishment shortly after the concert, from where it was stolen in the middle of the night. It was never 'sold for $3,000.'” So where is it?

New Beatlefan: The new issue of Beatlefan, #209, looks at The Beatles' cinematic career and features an exclusive excerpt on the films they did and didn't make from Richard Buskin's new "Beatles 101" book. Wally Podrazik also looks at the impact "A Hard Day's Night" on their individual images. Other articles include Rick Glover's 1964 memories from the New York World's Fair, and the concluding part of Howie Edelson's interview with Beatles historian and biographer Mark Lewisohn. A sample issue costs $8 in the U.S. or $11 abroad. U.S. funds only. For more information, email

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