The Making of 'Back to the Future' (1985)

TV Short  |   |  Documentary, Short
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Release Date:

1985 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


This featurette is on the Blu-ray for Back to the Future (1985), released in 2010. See more »


References Back to the Future (1985) See more »


Written by Chuck Río
Courtesy of Mask, Inc.
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User Reviews

Travel back to before BTTF was part of pop culture
20 December 2006 | by (Rijswijk, ZH, Netherlands) – See all my reviews

Watching "The Making of Back to the Future" back now really is like taking a trip back in time. In 1985, Robert Zemeckis had scored a hit directing 'Romancing the Stone', but the three movies he co-wrote with pal Bob Gale (two of which he directed) were all big money losers. So this, the two Bob's fourth and without a doubt best screenplay, was really being pushed marketing wise by using Michael J. Fox's teen idol appeal and the name of eighties hit machine Steven Spielberg (who looks like a rock musician of the era here, with the long hair and no beard). Fox is really selling it, and manages to work up his enthusiasm besides working on Family Ties during the day and Back to the Future at night (a unique situation they made sure to spell out at the beginning of this piece). Notice that when asked where he would like to travel if he had a time machine, MJ. picks the old west. His wish came true a mere five years later (or a few days later for Marty Mcfly).

Special effects supervisor Kevin Pike explains some of the physics of time travel, 23 year old Lea Thompson lets us have a look at how the make up people turned her into a 47 year old (Crispin Glover and Chris Lloyd never do interviews) while production designer Lawrence Paul talks about creating the period look of Hill Valley 1955 and how they dirtied it all up for the scenes set in 1985. Both of the Bobs (Zemeckis and Gale) are on hand to offer their enthusiastic insights into the story and Alan Silvestri is shown directing the largest orchestra ever assembled at Universal (98 musicians in all). Finally, because every mid-eighties movie had to have a hit record on the radio promoting it, Huey Lewis pops up to plug "The Power of Love" and his almost unrecognizable little cameo. Compare this short with the making of part two and you'll see a more mature Fox, now in budding movie star mode as opposed to TV idol and the same cast and crew being much more relaxed, for when you're doing a sequel to a big blockbuster, you can at least be sure of a great opening weekend.

8 out of 10

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