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Michael J. Fox: It wasn't until ‘Back to the Future Part III’ that he and Christopher Lloyd finally connected
"He’s not just this crazy guy, he’s an artist."
Great Scott! Michael J. Fox and Christopher Lloyd may have starred alongside each other in both Back to the Future and its immediate sequel, but it wasn't until the third installment of the beloved sci-fi film series that the pair really formed a strong connection.
Fox starred as Marty McFly in the franchise, while Lloyd played his pal, Emmett "Doc" Brown, a scientist who discovers how to make time travel possible. Doc is the reason that Marty accidentally gets sucked into the whole time travel adventure to begin with, and he's also the one who helps bring him back to present times and make things right. The original 1985 flick was followed by Back to the Future II in 1989, and Back to the Future III in 1990.
Fox, now 61, recently reflected on his relationship with Lloyd, 84. “Chris is a great guy. He’s very enigmatic,” the younger actor said on Variety Studio presented by Audible at Sundance. "It took me a few films to get to know him. I worked with him on [Back to the Future] Part III in a way that I hadn’t in the other films. And I really came to see how much he loved acting. I never got that before, I never had that conversation with him. But to sit down and talk about acting and talk about Shakespeare, talk about King Lear ...This guy can play King Lear! ... People don’t expect that of him. He’s always full of surprises."
"I learned from him about exposition, about telling a story," Fox added. " ... Chris is brilliant at it. It's all part of what I've noticed with Chris ... just his love of film, his love of being an actor. He’s not just this crazy guy, he’s an artist.”
Back in October, the actors sat side-by-side at a New York Comic Con panel to discuss the trilogy. They addressed Fox replacing actor Eric Stoltz in the lead role of Marty McFly more than a month after shooting began on the original film. Lloyd recalled director Robert Zemeckis and executive producer Steven Spielberg, among others, breaking the news.
"The announcement — at one o' clock in the morning after we were shooting for six weeks — was that the actor playing Marty would no longer be playing Marty, and that tomorrow, we would start shooting with Michael," Lloyd told the NYCC crowd. "I felt that I barely made it through the [first] six weeks and now I was gonna have to do it again?!"
Looking for other sci-fi movies to watch? Upside Down and Highlander are now streaming on Peacock.