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Martin Scorsese’s George Harrison documentary to premiere on HBO

on July 13, 2011, 6:20pm

For many music fans the world over, the eternal debate of who deserves their fandom, the battle of The Rolling Stones vs. The Beatles, is a tough conclusion to arrive at (just ask music critics Greg Kot and Jim DeRogatis). But for Oscar-winning director Martin Scorsese, there’s no choice who to praise: ya do both.

After directing the Stones’ Shine a Light, Scorsese went to work last year on a George Harrison documentary. The end result of his efforts, titled George Harrison: Living In A Material World, is now set to debut in two parts on October 5th and 6th, 2011 on HBO. (Also, anyone saying Scorsese can’t pick both bands will undoubtedly get both legs broken by Joe Pesci.)

As previously reported, the documentary makes use of archival home movies, personal photos, and concert footage to tell the story of the iconic rocker, who along with his role in the Fab Four produced movies, dabbled in philanthropy, and was a spiritual seeker. Along with the material provided by Harrison’s widow Olivia Harrison, a number of Harrison’s famous friends and collaborators are interviewed over the course of the film, including Eric Clapton, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, George Martin, Paul McCartney, Yoko Ono, Tom Petty, Phil Spector, Ringo Starr, and Jackie Stewart.

“Like so many millions of people, I first came to know George through the music, which was the soundtrack of our world,” Scorsese, who also directed No Direction Home: Bob Dylan, said in a press release. “So when I was offered the chance to make this picture, I jumped at it.  Spending time with Olivia, interviewing so many of George’s closest friends, reviewing all that footage, some of it never seen before, and listening to all of that magnificent music – it was a joy, and an experience I’ll always treasure.”

Abrams Books will also release Olivia Harrison’s accompanying archive George Harrison: Living in the Material World, which features photographs, letters, diaries, and memorabilia from her personal collection, in September.