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Eric Stoltz didn't bring the funny as the original Marty McFly

Eric-stoltz We feel so bad for Eric Stoltz right now.

Imagine if you'd been fired from a high-profile widget-making job five weeks in, but you'd gotten over it (even the boss said you were a "magnificent" widget maker) and gone on to have a respected career across the widget industry -- until years later, the evidence of your firing was dragged out to sell an anniversary edition of the widget you were supposed to have made.

Now imagine that the widget was "Back to the Future," and you were the original Marty McFly.

The unfunny McFly.


Michael J. Fox, reportedly Robert Zemeckis' first choice, was presumed unavailable for the 1985 film because of his "Family Ties" TV series gig, and Stoltz got the job. 

But five weeks into production, nobody was laughing, the filmmakers said -- at least not laughing the

way they'd expected to laugh. Fine actor Stoltz was canned, fine actor Fox was hired in his place, Zemeckis et al reshot all the McFly footage to that point, and the rest is history.

This footage has been teased for quite a while, and now you can see it in the video above, from the 25th anniversary DVD set coming out Oct. 28.

(By the way, executive producer Steven Spielberg rocks a phenomenally retro look around the two-minute mark of this older making-of video.)

-- Christie D'Zurilla

Photo: No, still not laughing. Eric Stoltz in 2008 in the SyFy series "Caprica." Credit: Carole Segal / SyFy

Comments () | Archives (5)

He certainly has that star quality; maybe he was off-key the night the critic saw him.

There's no one less funny than Michael Fox. He's so boring that he was a charter member of the Mediocrity Club. Eric Stoltz is a brilliant actor. I can't wait for the next season of Caprica.

Would've quit acting altogether if that happened to me, but Eric went on to become one of the most respected actors of his generation. Now he's a director too (check out this week's "Glee"!). He's done well for himself considering...

So... Universal 'backed' Zemekis into a start date with an actor that he didn't really want.

And then the following month Zemekis found out Fox was actually available.

So he threw together a rough assembly to argue his case with Universal.

Do you really think he cut together the best takes? Or is it possible he guaranteed that Universal would back him up firing Stotlz by cutting together the least funny takes?

And now he's making even more money off of this move.

Hollywood. Such a compassionate business!

Eric Stoltz is really a fine actor. Better than Michael J. Fox (no disrespect). Compare their bodies of work. It probably just wasn't right for Eric.


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