Magnolia Nabs Beatles Doc 'Good Ol’ Freda'

10:49 AM PST 04/22/2013 by Tatiana Siegel
Courtesy of Freda Kelly
Freda Kelly and Paul McCartney

Directed by Ryan White, the film made its U.S. premiere last month at the SXSW festival.

Magnolia Pictures has acquired North American rights to Good Ol’ Freda, a documentary about the Beatles’ lifelong secretary Freda Kelly.

Directed by Ryan White (Pelada) and produced by Kathy McCabe, White and Jessica Lawson, the doc made its U.S. premiere last month at the SXSW Film Festival.

REVIEW: Good Ol' Freda

Kelly was just a shy Liverpudlian teenager when she was asked to work for a local band hoping to make it big. As the Beatles' devoted secretary and friend, Freda was there as history unfolded, witnessing the evolution -- advances and setbacks, breakthroughs and challenges -- of the most popular band in history. In Good Ol' Freda, she tells her story for the first time in 50 years. One of a few films with the support of the living Beatles and featuring original Beatles music, it offers an insider perspective on the band that changed the music industry.

Magnolia will release the film theatrically later in the year.

“Freda Kelly is a truly remarkable woman, and Good Ol' Freda is a treasure trove and delight for fans of the Beatles, from casual to die-hard,” Magnolia president Eamonn Bowles said. “Ryan White has done us all a great service in telling her story.”

STORY: Meet the Beatles' Secretary 

Added White: "The dignity and devotion with which Freda has lived her life inspired me to make this film. I am so thrilled to partner with Magnolia and the amazing team there; they are the perfect company to get Freda's long-untold story out to audiences on a wider scale."

Josh Braun of Submarine repped the filmmakers. Dori Begley negotiated on behalf of Magnolia.

Email: Tatiana.Siegel@THR.com, Twitter: @TatianaSiegel27 

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