Billboard Bits: The Beatles, Priest/Maiden, Suge Knight

News on The Beatles, Judas Priest/Iron Maiden, Suge Knight

BeatlesIn celebration of the 40th anniversary of the release of the Beatles' first single, "Love Me Do," Miramax Home Entertainment will on Sept. 24 issue a two-disc DVD version of the band's 1964 film "A Hard Day's Night." Along with the original feature will be "Give Me Everything," a new "companion anthology" to the film, and a new half-hour documentary, "Things They Said Today..." (a VHS version of the title will only include the documentary as a bonus).

For the release, "A Hard Day's Night" has been digitally enhanced from the original 35mm negative, as has the mono soundtrack. The DVD also features 30 interviews with most of the film's surviving cast and crew members, as well as close friends of the Beatles, including director Richard Lester, musical director George Martin, screenwriter Alun Owen, and leading co-stars John Junkin and Victor Spinetti.

-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.

IronStalwart heavy metal acts Judas Priest and Iron Maiden will each release concert DVDs in the coming weeks. Judas Priest has slated July 23 for the release of "Live in London," recorded last December at the Brixton Academy, via SPV, while on Aug. 20, Maiden will deliver "Rock in Rio," filmed at last summer's third Rock in Rio festival in Rio De Janeiro, through Sanctuary Visual Entertainment.

The concert featured on Judas Priest's DVD is presented in widescreen format, with the audio of the band's 90-minute plus set offered in Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound and Dolby Digital 2.0. A 25-minute soundcheck performance, interviews, and behind-the-scenes footage round out the disc.

The Iron Maiden disc is culled from a 14-camera shoot by Globo TV, which broadcast the Rock in Rio festival to a worldwide audience, plus another four cameras directed by Dean Karr, director of the video for the band's 2000 single "The Wicker Man." Bassist Steve Harris edited 60-hours of footage to produce the resulting DVD two-hour concert feature. Audio is offered in Dolby 5.1 Surround Sound and Digital Theatre Sound (DTS); a bonus disc will sport more than an hour of interviews and an exclusive photo diary.

-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.

SugeRap mogul Marion "Suge" Knight has been slapped with a $6 million income tax bill that he racked up while behind bars. An attorney for Knight, owner of Tha Row Records, formerly known as Death Row Records, said the Internal Revenue Service sent a collection notice this week regarding taxes owed in 1997.

At that time, Knight was serving a five-year sentence for violating his probation after getting involved in a fight the night Death Row Records rapper Tupac Shakur was killed in Las Vegas.

Knight "is a hardworking citizen and meets all his responsibilities," lawyer Arthur Barens said Friday. "He plans to pay it." IRS spokesman Victor Omelczenko declined to comment. The collection notice arrived just a few months after Knight's former attorney, David E. Kenner, 60, of Los Angeles, was sentenced to three years probation after pleading guilty to tax evasion charges.

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