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The Secrets of the Back to the Future Trilogy
The Secrets of the Back to the Future Trilogy
Directed by Peyton Reed
Produced by Michael Doqui, George Zaloom, Les Mayfield
Written by Peyton Reed
Starring Kirk Cameron (host)
Music by Alan Silvestri
Distributed by Universal Pictures
Release date(s) June 12, 1990 (U.S.); September 15, 1990 (U.K.)
Running time 21 mins.


"Hi! I'm Kirk Cameron, your host for The Secrets of the Back to the Future Trilogy. In the next half-hour, we'll take an inside look at the amazing trilogy of films that have carried Marty McFly and Doc Brown across the time barrier, spanning more than a century of adventure. We'll also answer some of the burning questions that Back to the Future fans all over the world have asked us. Whether it's about hoverboards, runaway trains or mystery scenes, we'll answer your letters."
—Kirk Cameron's intro to the show

The Secrets of the Back to the Future Trilogy was a 21-minute behind-the-scenes television show hosted by Kirk Cameron.

It was originally transmitted in the United States on June 12, 1990; and also screened in the U.K. later that year, on September 15.

Synopsis

Kirk Cameron The Secrets of the Back to the Future Trilogy

Kirk Cameron stands next to the open gull-wing driver's door of the DeLorean time machine as he opens the show.

The show starts with Kirk Cameron arriving in an Old West town — which may possibly be the set of 1885 Hill Valley — in the DeLorean time machine, which has several large bulging white mail sacks mounted on the back.

After introducing himself and welcoming the viewers to the show, Cameron says he will be answering some of the many questions about the Back to the Future trilogy that fans have sent in by letter. Following the opening credit sequence, which features action clips from the movies, Cameron opens one of the sacks on the back of the DeLorean to display the mail inside, saying "And, as you can see, we have plenty of letters to choose from."

During the show, two questions are delivered to Cameron personally: a telegraph operator (Kenneth Scherr) hands him a telegram with the first question to be answered; and later on, a Pony Express rider (Ray Saniger) gallops into the town on horseback to give Cameron a letter containing the next question. The other questions are all picked by Cameron from the sack he opened earlier.

Three deleted scenes — which are used by Cameron to illustrate his answers to two of the questions — are shown. These are (in order of appearance):

(This scene was used to answer a question asking whether the inclusion of the modern day hair dryer in the "Darth Vader" scene was a mistake.)
(This scene was used to answer a question about the space-time continuum as seen in the Back to the Future trilogy, to show what happened to the school as a result of history being changed.)
  • Old Biff fading out of existence in 2015.
(This scene was also used to answer the aforementioned question about the space-time continuum. In the accompanying voice-over, Cameron theorizes that Biff may have been shot by his 1985A wife Lorraine "sometime in the mid 1990s.")

The final question asked in the show — quoted by a young cowboy (Jason Michael Adelman) — is whether there will be a Back to the Future Part IV, which Cameron deems unlikely, but he does mention the upcoming (at the time) Back to the Future: The Ride, opening at Universal Studios in November 1990. On hearing this, the Old West townsfolk — who have been Cameron's audience throughout — all cheer.

After telling the viewers "I'm Kirk Cameron. Thanks again for joining me, and remember: the future is what you make of it," Cameron departs in the DeLorean, watched by the townsfolk, and the credits roll.

Behind the scenes

  • The following captions appear after the copyright notice in the show's closing credits (original on-screen text):
  • "Back to the Future Part III" now playing at a theater near you.
  • "Back to the Future" and "Back to the Future Part II" both available on videocassette
  • The show's closing credit captions are rolled over an image of Doc and Marty's clock photograph from Back to the Future Part III.
  • Although Kirk Cameron mentions towards the end of the show that Back to the Future: The Ride will be opening at Universal Studios in November 1990, in the event the opening was somewhat delayed. The ride eventually opened at Universal Studios Florida on May 2, 1991; at Universal Studios Hollywood on June 12, 1993; and at Universal Studios Japan on March 31, 2001.

Release

The Secrets of the Back to the Future Trilogy was released on videocassette exclusively as part of a four-tape Back to the Future VHS box set in 1990, but was never made available at a later date as a separate tape.

The show appeared as a bonus feature on the disc for Back to the Future Part III in the 2002 DVD release of the Back to the Future trilogy; and was also available in the 2010 Blu-ray trilogy.

Crew

  • Written and Directed by — Peyton Reed
  • Produced by — Michael Doqui, George Zaloom, Les Mayfield
  • Associate Producer — Greg Czech
  • Executive Producers — Bob Gale, Frank Marshall, Roger Armstrong
  • Production Manager — Leslie Jett
  • Production Coordinator — Catherine Meyers
  • Post Production Supervisor — Daniel Gillett
  • Music Editor — David Palmer
  • Re-recording Mixer — Mike Perricone
  • Film Clip Research — Marie Snyder
  • Feature Score by — Alan Silvestri

Host Segment:

  • Host — Kirk Cameron (not billed on-screen)
  • Line Producer — Jean Michel Michenaud
  • Director of Photography — Jamie Thompson
  • Production Designer — Bryan Jones
  • Costumer — Jamie Burrows
  • Telegraph operator — Kenneth Scherr
  • Pony Express rider — Ray Saniger
  • L'il cowboy — Jason Michael Adelman

Behind the scenes footage:

  • BTF II Segment Director — Mark Cowen
  • BTF III Segment Director — Peyton Reed
  • Director of Photography — Shawn Maurer
  • Sound Mixer — Richard Mortillaro
  • Special Thanks to — Mary Radford, Mary Ann Desimore
  • "Doubleback" Written and Performed by — ZZ Top / Available on Warner Bros. Records
  • Produced by — ZM Productions, Inc.
  • Universal Studios & Amblin Entertainment Inc. Copyright © 1990

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