Introverted, sensitive, shy and polite… not generally words you would associate with a rock star, yet this is just how people described Kurt Cobain after meeting him. Growing up in Aberdeen, a suburb of Seattle in the US, the son of Wendy and Donald Cobain, Kurt was a happy-go-lucky and loving child with an artistic streak. His creative talents extended from drawing his favourite Disney cartoon characters to playing musical instruments. From the age of just two he was playing the piano and singing songs to entertain his family.
In 1987, Kurt started a band with his school friend Krist Novoselic and after experimenting with a series of names, the band settled on Nirvana, which Kurt said was “… a name that was kind of beautiful or nice and pretty instead of a mean, raunchy punk name like the Angry Samoans.” Following a succession of drummers, Nirvana’s line-up was completed with the arrival of Dave Grohl in 1990. They played relatively local gigs on the west coast of America, and quickly established themselves on Seattle’s radical grunge scene.
When the Beatles began filming A Hard Day’s Night on March 2nd, 1964 they had just returned from their first tour of America and ‘Beatlemania’ had well and truly gripped the world. An audience of over 70 million had tuned in to their appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show and they topped the charts on both sides of the Atlantic. Although filmed in just six weeks, the movie captured Beatlemania at its most frenzied but also at its happiest.
Director Richard Lester filmed in a semi-documentary style using handheld cameras to capture the energy of the action. In case the Beatles couldn’t act when they arrived to set, the script, written by Alun Owen, was kept simple and was constructed to ensure that each of the Beatles spoke in short sentences. Once filming began and it became apparent that the boys were naturals in front of the camera, new material was written to demonstrate the individuality of each Beatle. As a result, a lot of their lines feel improvised, although little was. Paul later said, “Alun hung around with us and was careful to try and put words in our mouths… the film manages to capture our characters quite well, so I thought he did a very good script.”