A stage musical based on the blockbuster film Back to the Future will have its world premiere in Manchester. The show, which is set to open in February 2020 and then transfer to the West End in London, arrives five years later than previously announced. A production had been planned for the film’s 30th anniversary in 2015.
The role of time-travelling teenager Marty McFly, played in the 1985 movie by Michael J Fox, will be taken by Olly Dobson in his biggest stage role to date. Dobson’s previous West End credits include Matilda and the Meat Loaf musical Bat Out of Hell.
The musical will have a book by Bob Gale and music and lyrics by Alan Silvestri and Glen Ballard, alongside classic rock’n’roll songs from the film including Johnny B Goode. It will be directed by John Rando, and not by Jamie Lloyd, as announced in 2014.
Gale, who wrote the original film with its director Robert Zemeckis, said he and Zemeckis had “been trying to get this project off the ground for years, but good things take time and finally, the time is right. Our cast is outstanding, the songs are fantastic, and director John Rando is doing an amazing job ensuring the show truly captures the magic of the movie. We’re thrilled that we can retell our story on stage in a brand-new way.”
Designer Tim Hatley will be in charge of sets and costumes to fit the show’s two eras: 1985 and 1955. Christopher Lloyd, who played Dr Emmett Brown in the films, said: “Ever since Bob Gale told me about this, I’ve been eagerly anticipating it and, in particular, wondering what it will be like to hear Doc Brown sing. I’m only sorry I don’t have a real time machine so that I could see it tomorrow.”
The musical will open at the Manchester Opera House on 20 February 2020 for a 12-week season, before transferring to the West End.