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Thread: Eric Stoltz as the original Marty McFly

  1. #1
    That's all folks! Unklescott's Avatar
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    May 2003
    Dublin, OH

    Eric Stoltz as the original Marty McFly

    I was not aware of this. Have any of you ever heard this before?

    THR: Eric Stoltz as the original Marty McFly

    veryone knows the classic 1985 film "Back to the Future" featured a boyish Michael J. Fox in a winning performance as Marty McFly.

    But Fox was not the original McFly. In fact, Eric Stoltz was five weeks into shooting the famed McFly role when director and co-writer Robert Zemeckis made a drastic production decision -- changing his lead actor.

    Details of the shocking Hollywood switch and never-before-seen footage of Stoltz as McFly are part of the extras package for the "Back to the Future 25th Anniversary Trilogy" to be released on Blu-Ray on Oct. 26.

    Zemeckis says the casting change was "this horrific decision; it was heartbreaking for everybody."

    Executive producer Steven Spielberg said that Zemeckis consulted him before pursuing the casting change.

    "(Zemeckis) showed me the first five weeks of shooting that he had put together," Spielberg said. " And he said, 'I just don't think we're getting the laughs I was hoping we would get.' "

    Spielberg said he realized his director "was absolutely correct."

    The rest is pop-culture history. Zemeckis was able to "convince the studio to let me reshoot five weeks of work," and Michael J. Fox was cast in a career-defining role. "Back to the Future," released on Oct. 26, 1986, would go on to gross $381 million worldwide and lead to two further sequels.

  2. #2
    Yoffy lifts a finger... fluff's Avatar
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    Sep 2002

    Re: Eric Stoltz as the original Marty McFly

    I did know that one.
    I read an article about people who were offered roles that they turned down.

    Nicole Kidman was originally offered Panic Room.
    Demi Moore was up for the lead in Flash Dance but the execs chose Beals after deciding that she's the one they were more attracted to.
    To hell with acting and dancing, who do you want to sleep with?

    Both Dustin Hoffman and Anne Bancroft were third choice for their roles in The Graduate, but I can't remember off the top of my head which four people were offered the roles before them.

    There's probably all manner of these instances listed on the net somewhere.

    Here's one article.

    100 Actors Who?ve Turned Down Big Movie Roles

    Not sure how accurate this is. I knew Cage was offered the role in The Wrestler, but I heard that Darren Aronofsky really wanted Rourke for the role and pushed to get him cast.

    Hard to believe five people turned down the role of Ray Neary in Close Encounters. Can't imagine anyone other than Dreyfuss in that role.

    Here's another.
    20 Actors and Actresses Who Turned Down Important or Popular Roles
    Tom Cruise as Donnie Brasco? So pleased he passsed on that, Depp was perfect, imo.
    Last edited by fluff; 10-12-2010 at 05:05 PM.
    "That's Numberwang!"

  3. #3
    FoRT Lurker CrossingGuard's Avatar
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    Nov 2006
    Bay Area / Boston

    Re: Eric Stoltz as the original Marty McFly

    I love reading all the "Who Turned Down What Role" stuff. There's always a shocker there or two.

    This is a bit different though, since Eric actually did accept the role and was five weeks into filming. Five weeks! My jaw dropped when I read this article on Yahoo!, not only because I didn't know that Michael J. Fox wasn't the original Marty (a role perfect for him), but also because I didn't know that they could fire their lead actor that deep into filming. I've never heard of such a case. It was a good decision though.
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  4. #4
    Resident "tyrant" JavaJo's Avatar
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    May 2009

    Re: Eric Stoltz as the original Marty McFly

    It was a good decision. MJF WAS Marty. I can't picture anyone else in that role. Nothing against Eric, because he's a good actor, but Michael owned that role.
    I hate when the cops throw me in the back of the squad car ....like they didnít hear me call shotgun.
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