EXCL: Zemeckis, Gale and Lloyd on Going Back to the Future


The “Back to the Future” trilogy’s director Robert Zemeckis, star Christopher Lloyd and screenwriter Bob Gale agree they don’t mind a return visit to the past – but only to celebrate this year’s 25th Anniversary of the beloved franchise’s debut. Otherwise, they say there just aren’t enough gigawatts to get them to jumpstart a third sequel.

“I think three is a good number to end on,” Zemeckis, who’s long resisted reviving the franchise, told ComingSoon.net. “Three is enough.”

“The story is closed,” confirmed Gale. “When Michael J. Fox was diagnosed with Parkinson’s we said ‘Come on. Who wants to see a Back to the Future movie if Michael J. Fox isn’t it?’ I don’t. He didn’t. Nobody does.”

“There’s always talk, you know, but we’ll see,” said Lloyd, who still revels in the on-screen chemistry he shared with Fox. “It was just there. Like any wonderful relationship, it just existed. We didn’t have to work for it or worry about it. It was inherent, you know? And just great casting.”

The team is content to celebrate by looking backward, not forward. “We’re going to go to New York to do the kick-off on the 26th of October for the big Blu-ray trilogy release,” said Zemeckis. That specific date falls exactly 25 years after the day Marty McFly departs 1985 Doc Brown’s time-traveling DeLorean in the first film, and Gale has plans for more film-inspired occasions.

“In Los Angeles from November 5th to November 12th there are a group of events called WereGoingBack.com, put together by a whole bunch of ‘Back to the Future’ fans,” said the screenwriter, noting those dates correspond to Marty’s weeklong stay in 1955. “They’re going to go to a bunch of different filming locations and a lot of the people that worked on the movie in various capacities are going to be at some of these different events.”

Zemeckis – who went on the helm further classics including Forrest Gump and Who Framed Roger Rabbit (also co-starring Lloyd) – said he’s thrilled with the enduring popularity of the “Back to the Future” films. “I feel proud. I mean, who would’ve ever thought it? It’s great!”

“The whole series was so full of kind of an optimism and excitement for life, for adventure, and discovery,” said Lloyd. “All things that I admire in people. And the opportunity to bring all of that to life was a wonderful experience. For people who still love to go to the movie, more generations will see it – after 25 years it’s an extraordinary, extraordinary experience.”

Gale admits he’s surprised how long the series has resonated with audiences. “It still delights new generations, all the way to the kids that live around the corner from me who want to come over and see my hoverboard and all my props.”

As for their own future, Zemeckis is at work on a 3D remake of Yellow Submarine. “It’s a blast,” he says. “I’m reliving my time with The Beatles.” He’s enjoying working on a project specifically designed for the optical experience. “The 3D is great. Everything can’t be 3D. Everything shouldn’t be 3D, but if it’s done well and it serves the story it’s a new way to experience cinema.”

Meanwhile, Gale’s wrapping a popular stint writing comic book story arcs for “Amazing Spider-Man.” “My last ‘Spider-Man’ story comes out later this month, “Amazing Spider-Man #647,” he says. “But then they’ve changed the way that Spider-Man is going to work after that. So my services are, for the time being, no longer required. Instead of it coming out three times a month they’re going to two times a month with just one writer. I think the three times a month thing made editor Steve Wacker insane because it really was crazy, to balance the different writers and the different artists, the schedule, having stuff written out of continuity and making it fit into continuity. So Dan Slott has just taken over the title himself [as writer]. He’s the perfect choice, absolutely, and I know he’ll do a great job.”