“Back to the Future” fans can no longer enjoy the classic ride at Universal Studios Florida, but if it wasn’t for Harry Potter writer J.K. Rowling there would hardly be a trace left of the popular film franchise at the park.
As the story goes, Universal Orlando was busy planning the Wizarding World of Harry Potter and giving Rowling a tour of the area. That’s when they came across the “Back to the Future III” time travel train from the second sequel. “12 Monkeys” showrunner and die-hard “Back to the Future” fan Terry Matalas explains in a recent interview with The Nerdy Bird what (allegedly) happened next.
“The story behind the train is when they were walking J.K. Rowling through the park, they were going to use the train or convert the train for the Hogwarts (Express) at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter,” recounted Matalas. “She was like ‘No, absolutely do not do that, please do not. This is iconic. Keep it totally as it is.’ So J.K. Rowling actually saved the Back to the Future III time train from being (turned into a Harry Potter attraction).”
USA Today explains that another anonymous train was used instead, but Back to the Future fans can thank Rowling for preserving a significant piece of history from the film trilogy.