Filming: Help!

The Beatles completed the interior kitchen and dining scenes for the Rajahama Indian restaurant sequence in Help! on this day.

John Lennon and Ringo Starr in the Indian restaurant scene from Help!, April 1965

The scenes were filmed on a set at Twickenham Film Studios in England. During a break while filming, the group saw traditional Indian musical instruments for the first time. George Harrison, in particular, was fascinated by them, and the music had a significant effect on The Beatles’ musical development.

The first time that we were aware of anything Indian was when we were making Help!. There was an odd thing about an Indian and that Eastern sect that had the ring and the sacrifice; and on the set in one place they had sitars and things – they were the Indian band playing in the background, and George was looking at them.

We recorded that bit in London, in a restaurant. And then we were in the Bahamas filming a section and a little yogi runs over to us. We didn’t know what they were in those days, and this little Indian guy comes legging over and gives us a book each, signed to us, on yoga. We didn’t look at it, we just stuck it along with all the other things people would give us.

Then, about two years later, George had started getting into hatha yoga. He’d got involved in Indian music from looking at the instruments in the set. All from that crazy movie. Years later he met this yogi who gave us each that book; I’ve forgotten what his name was because they all have that ‘Baram Baram Badoolabam’, and all that jazz. All of the Indian involvement came out of the film Help!.

Also on 6 April 1965, television talk show host Simon Dee presented The Beatles with a Bell Award from pirate station Radio Caroline. The Beatles, however, proved disruptive by ringing the bell during inappropriate moments during the presentation.

The event was filmed by news reporters, and Dee also interviewed the group for Radio Caroline.

Last updated: 1 April 2019
Filming: Help!
UK EP release: Beatles For Sale
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