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WANTED: Back to the Future Photos

Discussion in 'Photography' started by martydmc12, Jan 23, 2014.

  1. martydmc12

    martydmc12 Newcomer

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    Hi everyone,

    My name is Randy, and I'm with BTTF.com. I'm currently developing a 'Back to the Future' project (non-BTTF.com website related), and I need your help.

    I'm looking for photos. Lot's and lot's of photographs from both the Hollywood and Florida parks.

    UNIVERSAL STUDIOS HOLLYWOOD

    - Back to the Future... The Ride (1993-2007)

    - Doc Brown's Chicken (1993-2014)

    - Snacks to the Future

    - Time Depot a.k.a. Back to the Future Store (1993-2004)

    - The World of CineMagic: Back to the Future Special FX Show (1991-2001)

    UNIVERSAL STUDIOS FLORIDA

    - Back to the Future... The Ride (1991-2007)

    - Back to the Future: The Store (1990-2007)

    I'm also looking for pictures of billboards located throughout Hollywood and Orlando during the early 1990's, advertising 'The Ride'. In fact, most of the photos I'm seeking will most likely be from the early 90's. Even advertising for 'Back to the Future: The Animated Series', which I know existed at the Hollywood park in 1991.

    And if anyone has photos that date back to as early as 1984, with shots from the backlot during the production of Part I (1984-85) and Part II (1988-89), in which the Courthouse Square would have been transformed into Hill Valley 1955, 1985 and 2015), I'll gladly take a look at those as well.

    Brochures, magazines ads, coupons, signs at the Hollywood Park advertising the 'Final Flight'. Whatever you've got I'm interested. However I'm not looking for photos with you, your family or friends in them. These photos need to be without people posing for the camera.

    I know this is a lot to ask, but I would sincerely appreciate all the help I can get.

    To get in touch with me directly, or send photos, you can email me at: Randy (at) BTTF dot com.

    Thanks!
     
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  2. Allen The Actor

    Allen The Actor Allen The Actor BANNED

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    I'll definitely try to dig through what I have and I'll get in touch with you. Love BTTF.com, and to this day I am really grateful to have been part of BTTF.com's final flight :)
     
  3. Bonkers

    Bonkers Rookie

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    Snacks to the Future? Where was this at?
     
  4. martydmc12

    martydmc12 Newcomer

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    Snack to the Future was located between 'The Ride' and the escalator on the Upper Lot. It's really nothing more than a snack and beverage cart with the words 'Snack to the Future' done in the BTTF style logo.

    http://james.lab6.com/2007/static/img_0766.jpg

    I've been emailed since my original post, asking what this project is intended for. For the moment, research. I'm working on something to help celebrate the 30th Anniversary of 'Back to the Future' in 2015. I can't discuss anything more than that at the moment. Any photos that I've chosen for the final outcome, I will be asking approval (in writing) from the person(s) supplying them.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 23, 2014
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  5. Jon Fu

    Jon Fu Editor-in-Chief Emeritus Staff Member

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    Randy,


    I have photos of Doc Brown's Chicken I'll be willing to let you use. I think I have a few Back to the Future ride photos as well.
     
  6. Bonkers

    Bonkers Rookie

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    Ohhhh thanks for explaining. I didn't even know that existed.
     
  7. Jeremy12Lopez

    Jeremy12Lopez Newcomer

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    I have photos of everything that is still left in FL including both vehicle props and left over merchandise if that will help??
     
  8. martydmc12

    martydmc12 Newcomer

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    That would be great, Jon. Thanks.

    I have more than enough photos of the Locomotive and DeLorean. Photos of merchandise that I'm looking for, is when the Back to the Future store (now the Kwik-E-Mart) was fully operational, and loaded with BTTF merchandise inside (early 1990's). Thanks, though.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 28, 2014
  9. Chris

    Chris Veteran Member

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    I have video from 1994 of the ride exterior and plaza.  I also have behind the scenes photos of inside the ride in 2007 before it closed.  All from Hollywood.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 28, 2014
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  10. martydmc12

    martydmc12 Newcomer

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    Chris, I would love to take a look at your videos.

    Again, anyone who would like to send me anything, please do so by sending me an email to Randy (at) BTTF dot com.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 28, 2014
  11. wolfman84

    wolfman84 Newcomer

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    Chris can you post the videos on the forums?
     
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  12. steve

    steve Rookie

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    Agreed with above.

    I'd love to see this.
     
  13. Chris

    Chris Veteran Member

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    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 30, 2014
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  14. wolfman84

    wolfman84 Newcomer

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    Great to see courthouse square when it was only back to the future themed! Thanks Chris for the post. Brought back a lot of memories!
     
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  15. martydmc12

    martydmc12 Newcomer

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    Thanks for the video, Chris. I'd forgotten about the Hill Valley Beverage Co. Therefore an updated list...

    UNIVERSAL STUDIOS HOLLYWOOD

    - Back to the Future... The Ride (1993-2007)

    - Doc Brown's Chicken (1993-2014)

    - Hill Valley Beverage Co. (1993-?)

    - Snack to the Future (Snack Cart)

    - Time Travelers Depot a.k.a. Back to the Future Store (1993-2004)

    - The World of CineMagic: Back to the Future Special FX Show (1991-2001)

    UNIVERSAL STUDIOS FLORIDA

    - Back to the Future... The Ride (1991-2007)

    - Back to the Future: The Store (1990-2007)

    On a personal note, it's really quite sad to see that all of this stuff is now history. Universal put so much effort into making BTTF a part of their experience, and now there's nothing left.
     
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  16. Chris

    Chris Veteran Member

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    HTF put it nicely on our last podcast.  Universal is a NOW theme park.  Always updating to the new, hot, and current franchises.  Obviously, Back to the Future was lost many years ago in popularity for the general audience.  I can imagine it will continue to disappear after the famous 2015 date coming just around the corner.

    With competition always keeping their older venues up and running, it is tough for us to see classic rides and attractions we grew up with go away.  We all have to remember business, and that is the name of the game... to make money!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 3, 2014
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  17. Chris

    Chris Veteran Member

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    Talk about timing, just found these today!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
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  18. martydmc12

    martydmc12 Newcomer

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    I agree with you Chris, Universal is no longer the park it once was, with its "Ride the Movies" campaign; it's now a theme park. And I also agree with you that it's all about what's relevant and new; BTTF is a 29 year old movie property, with absolutely no plans for more sequels or remakes. With that being said, it's one of the many reasons I can tell you with complete confidence 'The Ride' was closed.

    I've been working with BTTF.com (now Back to the Future dot com) for over 20 years now, and I've been lucky enough to witness some of the many internal discussions about the future of BTTF with Universal. And my day job is working in the film industry. So I see how things have changed over the last two decades, especially with how Generation Y and Z relate to older movie properties; they simply have no interest in them. But BTTF has been able to overcome those obstacles, especially in the last five years. Take for example something as trivial and simple as IMDb. BTTF is currently ranked at #49 in their top 250. Five years ago it was well into the 200's. There's more merchandise now for it than there's ever been. And I just did a two day comic & sci-fi convention in September with Christopher Lloyd; he was the main attraction, amongst many other celebrity guests. I worked the BTTF booth, and we sold 90% of our merchandise in the first day. Close to 30,000 people attended, with literally dozens upon dozens of people were dressed up in some sort of BTTF costumes. So even without the prospects of new movies, there still seems to be a lot of interest in the franchise.

    But yes, after 2015, things may change. Part I will be celebrating it's 30th Anniversary, Part III it's 25th, and Part II celebrates the point in time in which the movie takes place. There are a lot of things in-the-works for next year, but it could very well be BTTF's last hurrah. But I hope not.

    But going back to my work with BTTF, and what I do for a living, you can't deny that Universal could be doing a better job with the upkeep of the franchise, especially when compared to other studios and theme parks and the treatment of their older properties. There's very little I can say publicly, based on my ongoing working relationship with the studio. But there are some things that are publicly known, but not often spoken of. For one, the DeLorean Time Machine which is now located at the NBC Universal Experience. That is the last remaining screen-used DeLorean from Part I, and it sat on the backlot decaying for nearly 20 years. Don't think for one instance that is was Universal Studios that paid for it's restoration, even though they own it. The Locomotive located at the Florida park, another screen-used prop from Part III - when Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling was touring the park a few years ago, checking out the plans for the Potter attraction, Universal told her they were going change the train over to look like the Hogwarts Express. Rowling declined Universal's offer to do such a thing, stating that it was the Back to the Future train, and should be left alone. And on top of that, she paid for it's restoration out of her own pocket (what a wonderfully nice thing to do). These things aren't 'theme park' touristy stuff, these are screen-used movie props. Movie props are big business; the restored DeLorean Time Machine is now estimated to be worth well over a one million. But it took the efforts of the fans and others for Universal to even consider doing anything about it in the first place. If it wasn't for them, I can guarantee you it would still be sitting there on the backlot wasting away.

    There are a lot of other factors into BTTF's demise at the studio that I'm aware of, including some theories that I think may also be the reasons why 'The Ride' was taken away, that had more to do with internal interests at the studio, rather than popularity of the attraction itself.

    Those photos are great, Chris! I've always wanted to get my hands on one of those "Special Effects Stage" posters. I was able to spend a day there during it's last week of operation in 2001, videotaping the show several times over, including having the the opportunity to go back stage and film the inner-workings of the show. Unfortunately for the project I'm working on now, I need photographs, not video footage, which is why I've been asking for photos.

    Going back to my point about props, Universal decided to destroy a lot of that stuff that was used in the FX show attraction, especially the full scale fibreglass DeLorean. That DeLorean was used throughout the filming of Part II for the flying sequences, and there's a lot of movie prop and BTTF collectors out there who would have loved to have had that thing. Same goes for the DeLorean's, props and signage used on The Ride; all of it was mostly dismantled and destroyed. It kind of makes you wonder why go to those lengths, especially when there are people out there willing to pay money for it all. Like I said, I have my theories.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 4, 2014
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  19. smoaT

    smoaT Member

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    Isn't J.K Rowling a cuttie. I didn't know she paid for the restoration...
     
  20. martydmc12

    martydmc12 Newcomer

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    It's been quite some time since I last posted in here, but in regards to this original post about acquiring photos for the project I was originally working on, that project was completed in 2015. It was for the book, Back to the Future: The Ultimate Visual History, which I co-wrote. There's an entire chapter dedicated to the creation and making of Back to the Future... The Ride, with some behind-the-scenes photos and opening day celebrations of the attraction.

    [​IMG]

    I had hoped to have more pictures of the BTTF stores (from Hollywood and Florida), and other stuff from the days of when BTTF reigned supreme at Universal, but I wasn't able to get everything I wanted.

    If anyone is interested in picking up a copy, you can purchase one from the official Back to the Future online store here: 'Back to the Future: The Ultimate Visual History' Hardcover book

    If anyone still wants to upload or send me photos of BTTF The Ride, the shops, Doc Brown's chicken, the Special Effects show (USH), please do so. We're still thinking we might create a massive BTTF Universal theme park archive for the Back to the Future website somewhere down the road.
     
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