‘The Beatles Anthology’ director Geoff Won for Dead at 73

Geoff Wonfor who directed The Beatles‘Grammy-winning Anthology documentary, died at the age of 73 on Nov. 22, his daughter confirmed.

He spent five years working on the eight-part series, which first aired in 1995 and included the previously unfinished John Lennon songs”Free as a bird” and “Real Love” as new Beatles tracks. He also worked on the British TV show from the 80s The tubeon several projects with Paul McCartney and a documentary about George Harrisons movie Shanghai surprise.

Confirming his passing in his native Newcastle, England, Wonfor’s daughter Sam said: “He was a one-of-a-kind person – a huge presence with a heart to match. His warmth, humor and encyclopedic ability to remember jokes of all qualities ensured that people , who met him, rarely forgot him – and this has been confirmed by the flood of wonderful messages and tributes we have received since his passing. He loved what he did and we are so grateful that he got to continue it to the last.”

In 2018, Wonfor told an audience at the Newcastle Film Festival that he had “broke down and cried” after McCartney called to tell him he was wanted for Anthology project. “I was at my dad’s and it was Paul McCartney who called and he said, ‘Hey, are you okay?’ … I spoke to one of you last night.’ I said, ‘Who the hell does he know that I know?’ He says, ‘A little guy called George Harrison. I didn’t know you worked with him—but then he didn’t know you worked with me!'”

He said the pair had “talked late into the night” before McCartney told him: “We want to work on the Beatles story and you’re that man.” Wonfor thought he was being asked to pick a year out of the band’s past. “What should I do, ’63 or ’64?” he asked. McCartney replied: “Don’t be a fool – you do it all!”

“It’s always a pleasure to look back on my time with it Anthology and I’m always happy to share some stories from the five years we spent making it in London,” Wonfor said in 2014. “Working with the Beatles was a dream come true for me. I queued for days to get a ticket to see them at Newcastle Town Hall in the 60s and I don’t think I’ll ever get over to [the] call from Paul McCartney.”

Watch Geoff Wonfor’s 2017 Showreel

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