Dreams of a Madman was the first and only film produced by Tannen Pictures in 1960 of the ABC timeline where an elderly Biff Tannen used the DeLorean time machine and the Grays Sports Almanac to make his younger self a millionaire.
Bernie Kessoff wasted millions of dollars making the film, largely because he embezzled tremendous amounts of money by spending it on his own enjoyment, confident that Biff, who was largely hobnobbing with celebrities and attempting to bolster his wife's acting career, was a poorly educated man would not see the true reason for the deficits. While this was certainly true as Biff Tannen had barely graduated Hill Valley High School and was no accountant, he started to get concerned when Tannen Pictures was ending up in the red and on the verge of repossession. Kessoff scrambled to cover his tracks by quickly wrapping production on Dreams of a Madman, which arguably resulted in a substandard movie.
Biff told Bernie not to worry at all about the lost profits and suggested he relax by betting on a horse race. Unbeknownst to Bernie, the horse track was controlled by the crime boss Deke Dirkin, who had Bernie killed when he mentioned that Biff had sent him. The film was considered such a flop it rippled into Biff's personal life and changed history. Biff's first wife Norma Tannen had been disappointed in his leadership of Tannen Pictures , which proved correct as it could not compete against the likes of Warner Brothers, Universal, or Walt Disney Studios. Shortly after the failure of Dreams of a Madman, all outstanding liens against Biff were called in and the studio was repossessed. Mrs. Tannen left Biff and set her sights on a man who was in a better position to help her advance in Hollywood. Biff took this loss hard, and realized that neither his prestige nor his money could get him everything in life. Biff, did however, better wise up about who to be with and it would be tougher to con him in future endeavors, as Biff was done with Tinseltown and turned his attention to other business matters such as waste management and gambling. Biff decided to return to the place of his birth and focus entirely on his corporate empire, BiffCo. Biff soon rebounded and sought to rebuild his romantic life by targeting Lorraine Baines, only to realize she had now married George McFly since he moved to Hollywood. While Biff seemed to accept Lorriane and George's marriage and become more astute to swindlers, he had not totally overcome his fascination with beautiful women and celebrities as evidenced in finding a new girlfriend, Jayne Mansfield, who would become his second wife and move with him to Hill Valley.
- Back to the Future (IDW Publishing)