Michael J Fox Passes the Torch to New Lead in ‘Back to the Future’ Reboot

in Movies & TV

Christopher Lloyd as Doc Brown (L) and Michael J Fox as Marty McFly (R) testing the DeLorean in 'Back to the Future'

Credit: Universal Studios

The new Marty McFly actor has Michael J Fox’s blessing!

It’s hard to imagine anyone else playing time-traveling teen Marty McFly besides the beloved Michael J Fox, who portrayed him in all three Back to the Future films: Back to the Future (1985), Back to the Future Part II (1989), and Back to the Future Part III (1990).

Even when you go back and watch rough-cut footage of actor Eric Stoltz, who was originally cast in the role of Marty McFly before Fox was brought in to replace him, it becomes clear that the Back to the Future icon was born to step into those self-tying sneakers!

Michael J Fox as Marty McFly in Back to the Future
Credit: Universal Studios

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While many continue to fan-cast Tom Holland as the character, who may indeed be a worthy successor, we think it’s best he sticks to, well, sticking to walls in the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Spider-Man films, thank you very much!

Speaking of the MCU, we can’t even imagine Marty McFly not looking like Michael J Fox even in other dimensions throughout the Back to the Future multiverse! With all that said, there are other actors who have portrayed Marty McFly over the years.

Doc Brown looking confused in Back to the Future (1985)
Credit: Universal Studios

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Outside the films, Marty McFly has been portrayed by five actors. In Back to the Future: The Animated Series (1991 — 1992), he’s voiced David Kaufman, and in Back to the Future: The Game (2011), he’s voiced by AJ LoCascio, while three actors portray him on stage.

Back to the Future: The Musical (2020) first opened back in 2020, wowing theater attendees in Manchester, UK, before moving to the Adelphi Theater in the West End, where it will continue to take guests back in time until October this year.

Meanwhile, the Broadway version of the hit stage production recently opened at the Winter Garden Theater, and despite getting off to a rocky start with theater critics, it’s impressing fans of the Back to the Future franchise left and right.

Doc Brown looking shocked in Back to the Future
Credit: Universal Studios

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In the London version, Marty McFly is played by Olly Dobson and Ben Joyce, both of whom deliver an excellent rendition of the iconic character. On Broadway, McFly is played by Casey Likes, who was previously best known for Broadway’s Almost Famous (2022).

Now, Likes, 21, has revealed how comparisons to Michael J Fox started long before he was cast as Doc Emmett Brown’s time-traveling partner in Back to the Future: The Musical.

Christopher Lloyd as Doc Brown (L) and Michael J Fox as Marty McFly (R) testing the DeLorean in Back to the Future
Credit: Universal Studios

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The Broadway star recently told PEOPLE that he doesn’t remember a time in his life without the original Back to the Future (1985). Here’s what he said about the influence the iconic film has had on his life:

“I’ve watched it a million times and my mom just loved Michael J Fox and always compared me to him,” Likes revealed. “For my generation, with parents who grew up with this movie and movies like it in the 1980s, like [E.T. the Extra Terrestrial] and all these magical, magical films in the ’80s, this was required viewing. My entire generation knows about it because of our parents. I love it deeply.”

Lea Thompson as Lorraine Baines (L) and Michael J Fox as Marty McFly (R) in Back to the Future
Credit: Universal Studios

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Likes also talked about his encounter with Michael J Fox at a gala event for the Broadway show in July, which he attended with his co-star Roger Bart, who plays Doc Brown. Along with Fox, the films’ director Robert Zemeckis and stars Christopher Lloyd and Leah Thompson (Lorraine Baines-McFly) were also in attendance.

“It was kind of a whirlwind,” Likes said. “I got to briefly meet him [Michael J Fox] and while we’re taking pictures, I kind of whispered to Michael, ‘Thank you for everything. Thanks for inspiring everything.’ He kind of means more to me than just his performance.” He continued, saying, “I was just kind of trying to let him know that while we were taking pictures. He was very open and very kind about it. He was very much putting the attention on me in a very humble way.”

Likes then talked about how he asked Fox for advice before taking to the stage for the Broadway opening:

“Right before he left, I realized I hadn’t asked him the question I wanted to ask him. So I caught up to him and I said, ‘Michael, do you have any advice for me before I go out on stage?’ And he said, ‘Kick ass! If you put your mind to it, you can accomplish anything.’ And then a minute later, I was walking through the door and I was on stage.”

Fox has been outspoken on the idea of a Back to the Future reboot, which is something many fans continue to oppose. Last year, the actor said that he’d be open to seeing a female-led reboot or sequel, which was echoed by his co-star Christopher Lloyd.

As for Roger Bart, he too had the torch handed to him by Christopher Lloyd (or the flux capacitor), in a trailer for the Broadway show. Check it out below:

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As per the official website, here’s the synopsis for the show:

Great Scott! The multi-award-winning Back to the Future: The Musical is changing Broadway musical theatre history.

When Marty McFly finds himself transported back to 1955 in a time machine built by the eccentric scientist Doc Brown, he accidentally changes the course of history. Now he’s in a race against time to fix the present, escape the past, and send himself… back to the future.

Experience this high-voltage comedy as the iconic story is adapted for the stage by the movie’s creators Bob Gale (Back to the Future trilogy) and Robert Zemeckis (Forrest Gump) and is directed by the Tony Award-winning John Rando.

Back to the Future the Musical features original music by multi-Grammy winners Alan Silvestri (Avengers: Endgame) and Glen Ballard (Michael Jackson’s Man in the Mirror), alongside hit songs from the movie including The Power of Love, Johnny B. GoodeEarth Angel and Back in Time.

When BACK TO THE FUTURE: THE MUSICAL hits 88mph, you’re gonna see some serious… entertainment.

Michael J Fox as Marty McFly looking shocked in Back to the Future
Credit: Universal Studios

Written by Bob Gale, the writer and producer of the three Back to the Future films, with music and lyrics by composer Alan Silvestri (who also scored the films) and Glen Ballard, the multi-award-winning Back to the Future: The Musical is an excellent re-telling of the iconic 1985 film of the same name, with an all-new cast and some fun alterations.

Like the film, it has been a massive hit with audiences and critics, and won the Laurence Olivier Award for Best New Musical, the WhatsOnStage Awards, and the Broadway World Awards in 2022.

The cast for the Broadway show includes The Devil Wears Prada‘s Liana Hunt as Lorraine Baines, Les Miserables’ Nathaniel Hackmann as Biff Tannen, Ain’t Too Proud‘s Jelani Remy in the dual roles of Goldie Wilson and Marvin Berry, and Almost Famous’ Casey Likes as Marty McFly. Hugh Coles and Roger Bart reprise their roles from the West End version of the show as George McFly and Doc Brown, respectively, both of whom have now been replaced by Oliver Nicholas and Cory English in the UK.

Back to the Future: The Musical is now showing in the West End and on Broadway. A North American tour has been set for 2024.

Have you seen Back to the Future: The Musical on Broadway or in the West End? If so, what do you think of the new Marty McFly? Let Inside the Magic know in the comments down below!

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