THE MOTOWN INVASION (2009)

An award-winning film made for the 50th anniversary of Motown about the label’s almost disastrous first UK tour in 1965. Despite an incredible line-up that included Little Stevie Wonder, the Supremes & Smokey Robinson, the Motown Revue played to half-empty venues and was nicknamed ‘The Ghost Tour’.

In an era before motorways, THE MOTOWN INVASION reveals what happened when young, sharp black Americans from Detroit zig-zagged across small-town provincial Britain – as the country awoke from its post-war slumber and entered the swinging Sixties.

The film explores the life-changing impact Motown & the UK had on each other – with plenty of social history, period detail and the intricacies of “taking tea”.

All interviewees were a part of the film’s original events. These include Paul McCartney, a host of Motown Revue artists from Mary Wilson of the Supremes to Martha Reeves, and British fans who experienced it all.

After an initial transmission on BBC Four, the film was broadcast on BBC Two at primetime.

DIRECTOR & PRODUCER: James Maycock

BROADCASTER: BBC TV / BBC Four

PRODUCTION COMPANY: BBC Factual

BBC EXECUTIVE PRODUCER: Paul Bullock

BBC COMMISSIONERS: Richard Klein / Adam Kemp

Clips

Paul McCartney & Mary Wilson On The English Class System


England Is Different