July 6th, 2010
10:58 AM ET

Not 'Back to the Future' Day - yet

So apparently somebody at the British website TotalFilm tweeted yesterday that the date July 6, 2010, was the date input by Doc Brown in "Back to the Future" for heading into the future, making Tuesday "Future Day."

And then - to paraphrase Winston Churchill - the tweet worked its way around the Web before the truth could turn its flux capacitor on.

When the error was pointed out, TotalFilm apologized - sort of. Though admitting they got the date wrong, the website Photoshopped a screengrab ... which caused yet more problems when IT made its way around the Web.

The truth is, of course, that in the original film, Marty McFly (played by Michael J. Fox) travels from October 26, 1985, back to the same date in November 1955, along the way knocking down one of the pines that gave its name to his starting point at Twin Pines Mall.

In "Back to the Future Part II," he does travel into the future - but it's still five years from now, October 21, 2015. (In the third film, he travels back to 1885.) So we have a ways to go before the older Biff Tannen gets ahold of Marty's almanac, travels back in time himself and manages to turn the latter part of the 20th century into his own hellish paradise. That all fell apart in 1997, of course, when Skynet became self-aware. (Whoops, wrong movie timeline.)

However, as some commentators pointed out, the weekend did have something to do with "Back to the Future" - it was the 25th anniversary of the film's release. So put on that Huey Lewis, call yourself "Calvin Klein" and order up a Pepsi Free. But don't forget to pay for it.

soundoff (97 Responses)
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  13. A.P.


    July 7, 2010 at 3:20 pm | Report abuse |
  14. d1120

    But you need to watch the speedometer when he's first racing thru the mall parking lot, after Doc got shot. There's one scene where the speedometer shows fewer miles than the one before, and the one after.

    July 7, 2010 at 9:30 am | Report abuse |
  15. OldGuy

    Well, I'll mark my calendar for Oct 21, 2015 and organize a big BTTF party. I still remember the BTTF party we had on Nov 5, 1955. Most of the guests has no idea what the party was about, which made it all the more fun for those of us in the know. The DeLorean party favors were a big hit. Not sure if anyone threw a BTTF party in 1885, but perhaps I'll go back soon to see.

    July 7, 2010 at 4:36 am | Report abuse |
  16. Andy

    I just watched the whole series. He goes back to nov 5th 1955, and has to stay a week, he mentions this in the film, then at the end, he plays at the dace and goes, on nov 12th 1955 back to 1985 via the lightning strike. In the 2nd film he goes with jennifer & doc brown to 2015, then after they do what they go back to the now alternate 1985..... they then go on a mission to correct this alternate timeline and travel to nov 12 1955, the day of the dance, to get the almanac back, lightning strikes the car, leaving him stranded till they find the hidden delorean in the mine tunnel, it takes doc brown a few days to get the time circuit fixed with 1955 parts, then marty goes back to 1885 to rescue doc brown, they have to wait several more days for the train so they can get up to speed for time travel back to 1985 proper. Doc brown then comes back to 1985 with his wife & kids on a steam powered locomotive time machine and thats the end.

    Hello, hello anybody home????

    – A

    July 7, 2010 at 1:57 am | Report abuse |
  17. AJ

    That wasn't Winston Churchill. Mark Twain is most associated with that line about truth getting halfway around the world before the truth can get its boots on. It was originally spouted by Charles Hadden Spurgeon in 1885, and even then he called it "an old proverb."

    July 6, 2010 at 11:12 pm | Report abuse |
  18. ZoeD

    There's a BTTF vidoegame coming out in December.

    July 6, 2010 at 10:02 pm | Report abuse |
  19. Sane in AZ

    Dopes! He doesn't go to 2015 until Part II! Geez . . .
    The original post was correct, he just went back to 1955 instead of forward to 2010 like he was supposed to.

    July 6, 2010 at 7:27 pm | Report abuse |
  20. Jon

    What was the month and day in the first film when the dog was sent 1 minute into the future?

    July 6, 2010 at 7:26 pm | Report abuse |
  21. Kevin D.

    One...point twenty one...jigawatts!!

    July 6, 2010 at 6:10 pm | Report abuse |
  22. Eric

    Marty first travels back to November 5, 1955, a red letter date in history, as it is the day Doc invented time travel in the form of the flux capacitor. He then travels back to the future on November 12, 1955, the day of the famous Hill Valley lightning storm, whereby a bolt of lightning struck the clock tower at 10:04 p.m., which is harnessed into the flux capacitor, giving it the 1.21 gigawatts necessary to travel through time back to 1985.

    July 6, 2010 at 6:00 pm | Report abuse |
  23. margie

    i don't care about hoverboards where can i get my hover conversion kit for my car?

    July 6, 2010 at 5:16 pm | Report abuse |
  24. Holly Golightly

    Make like a tree, and get outta here!

    July 6, 2010 at 5:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • Crikey

      It's make like a tree & LEAVE, you idiot! *slap* – You sound like a damn fool whan you say it wrong!

      July 6, 2010 at 11:27 pm | Report abuse |
  25. Chrismo69

    "Doc Brown" above with his "1.21 Gigawatts!" quote always reminds me that in 1985, very few non-scientists new what "giga" meant, and of course in the movie it's pronounced "Jiggawatts". Now in 2010, if you have a 1.21 gigabyte USB thumb drive, you're on the low end of the spectrum, and if you pronounced it "Jiggabyte", you'd be laughed out of the room!

    July 6, 2010 at 5:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • kjc

      there's a difference between a giga 'byte' and a giga 'watt'. If you could personally obtain or harness 1.21Gwatts in your house, you'd have about one third the capacity of a nuclear power plant. Thats 1,210,000 watts, or 200,000 60-watt light bulbs. I'm sorry, but that doesn't even compare to a 1.2gb data capacity thumb drive. Know what your talking about before you decide to fill the internet with more counterfeit information.

      July 6, 2010 at 6:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chrismo69

      You missed the point kjc. Giga is the IU prefix for 10 to the 9th power. You can look this up, it's not counterfeit, it's used all over the world. If you want to try to compare a gigawatt to a gigabyte, you can go ahead, but I wouldn't They are both 10 to the 9th power of each of their respective units, and neither is usually pronounced "Jigga".

      July 6, 2010 at 6:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Craig

      Actually 1.22 gigwatts = 1,210,000,000 watts.

      July 6, 2010 at 6:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sweetenedtea

      The commenter was specifying the prefix "giga-" as being uncommon among non-scientists, so s/he was merely pointing out that "gigabytes" is now a standard concept and therefore things large enough to merit "giga" are in the realm of civilian terminology. S/he wasn't comparing bytes to watts. You need to read more carefully.

      July 6, 2010 at 6:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chrismo69

      Sweetenedtea got my point, which may or may not have been very clear in the post.

      July 6, 2010 at 6:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • DB

      It was clear. kjc has problems with both reading comprehension and spelling, and appears to get upset easily.

      July 7, 2010 at 2:02 am | Report abuse |
  26. DennisK

    All this temporal displacement has me saying, "Woah, Doc, this is heavy..." Best movie trilogy ever, and don't argue with me! The article was a little sketchy on some facts, but got the tone and sense of humor right (let's remember, everybody–time travel is very, very theoretical...)

    July 6, 2010 at 4:36 pm | Report abuse |
  27. Bryan

    I hate people who butcher my movie..it was not July 6, 2010....it was Oct.21 2015.....if you dont know what you're talking about keep your mouth shut!!!!!!!!!

    July 6, 2010 at 4:36 pm | Report abuse |
  28. Rick

    I want to point out to the guys above that Doc Brown was not 'killed' by the lybians, he was only shot by them. When Marty returns from 1955 it's revealed that the good ol' Doc was indeed wearing a bullet proof vest, due to reading the note that marty had given him in the past.

    July 6, 2010 at 3:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • LtJolly

      Actually, he wasn't wearing a bulletproof vest in the original timeline. The zipper of his jumpsuit is lowered slightly and you can quite clearly see his shirt underneath. It was only after Marty returned to the new timeline, the one in which he wrote the letter to Doc warning him about the Libyans, that Doc was wearing the vest. Doc could have been killed in the original timeline, as his body did appear to be lifeless, but it was never really made clear.

      July 6, 2010 at 4:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jeremy

      @LtJolly: what is this...LOST? 😀

      July 6, 2010 at 4:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Corvus1

      @Jeremy- Nuh-uh, don't even begin to compare that travesty of a TV show to a classic like BTTF.

      July 7, 2010 at 9:13 am | Report abuse |
  29. Matt

    Enough!!! http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/16/BTTFTimelines.png

    July 6, 2010 at 3:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • Inkmot

      That timeline ommits Doc's solo journey to 2015, prior to his return to retrieve Marty and Jennifer at the end of the first movie. Very cool otherwise.

      July 6, 2010 at 5:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Marcy

      It's also missing Doc Brown's final trip with wife and family

      August 5, 2010 at 1:15 am | Report abuse |
    • Cham

      This graph doesnt take into consideration that Biff did return to 2015 after giving his younger self the sports almanach.
      Therefore, Marty, Jennifer and Doc dont travel back to the alternate present from the 21st october 2015 of timeline 3; they leave from the 21st october 2015 of timeline 4 newly created by biff.

      Even if they didnt notice the change, the universe did change; and since doc and marty get jennifer at the exact moment biff change the timeline, we dont get to know if marty's family who lives in hilldale diseapear to make place for some other family or if hilldale is also biff's propriety. Its made clear by the cops who get jennifer back home that Hilldale is already a horrible place to live in.. therefore biff control over the city would change the landscape as it is already bad.

      They dont realize the timeline changed around them the same way jennifer wouldnt have to travel in time to see the real 1985 taking the alternate timeline place.

      Make me wonder... Good thing they actually stoped biff from being this "luckiest man alive", otherwise, i'm not quite sure what would have heppend to jennifer when the landlords would have found her sleeping at their door... :O

      Ahhh!! what a great movie! 🙂

      August 13, 2010 at 10:04 am | Report abuse |
    • Cham

      I meant : "Therefore biff control over the city "" wouldNT "" change the landscape as it is already bad.

      August 13, 2010 at 10:06 am | Report abuse |
  30. Jeff J

    "My name is Darth Vadar and I come from the planet Vulcan" Love it!

    July 6, 2010 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
  31. Richard

    To those talking about the "hoverboard"... it's a piece of "artwork"...

    "Integrated into the board and the plinth is an electromagnetic system which levitates the board"

    For those like me who had no idea what a "plinth" was... it's the stand.
    So basically the stand in combination with the board is allowing it to "float" most likely ala magnets.

    July 6, 2010 at 3:18 pm | Report abuse |
  32. Jonathan

    Actually – in Nov 1955 Doc had not yet invented the Flux Capacitor – but rather had fallen and hit his head in the bathroom and only had a vision of the flux capacitor.

    July 6, 2010 at 3:16 pm | Report abuse |
  33. MAB

    Actually it may have been an exchange-Plutonium for a made bomb

    July 6, 2010 at 2:55 pm | Report abuse |
  34. MAB

    Yes the Lybyans wanted plutonium but they were coming to kill Doc Brown because the bomb he made them was actually just full of pinball machine parts!

    July 6, 2010 at 2:53 pm | Report abuse |
  35. RS

    Wow ! I feel old just hearing about when it came out, and I was just a kid when it hit the theaters. All in all it was a great movie. 2nd one was ok, but 3rd for me was an improvement. I still like the first one the best though.

    July 6, 2010 at 2:23 pm | Report abuse |
  36. DocBrown


    July 6, 2010 at 2:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Marty

      This is Heavy

      July 6, 2010 at 8:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Martin

      There's that word again, "Heavy." Why are things so heavy in the future? Is there something wrong with the Earth's gravitational pull?

      July 7, 2010 at 3:09 am | Report abuse |
  37. Robb

    Doc changes his mind in the first film as to which year in the future to visit. In the scene previously discussed, he unquestionably states "25 years into the future", which would be this year, 2010. However, at the end of the movie, after he survives the Libyan attack by wearing a bullet-proof vest, Marty asks, "How far ahead are you going?" Doc answers, "30 years...it's a nice round number." This is how he ultimately ends up visiting 2015, and it is why Doc and Marty go to the year 2015 in Back to the Future Part II.

    July 6, 2010 at 1:47 pm | Report abuse |
  38. ferdinand

    sheesh...anyone who paid attention to the film knows it was the year 2015, 30 years after 1985 which was 30 years before 1955. how can you not bookmark it in your head that in 2015, the Cubs win the world series against a florida "gator" team?

    July 6, 2010 at 1:42 pm | Report abuse |
  39. Goldy4Mayor

    All this talk of time travel is giving me the shakes!

    July 6, 2010 at 1:38 pm | Report abuse |
  40. Dragun

    This is still one of my all time favorite trilogies, I just recently re-watched them all with my daughter who is 11, and smart as she is said “You probably won’t live to see hover boards daddy, but don’t worry I will see them for you!" Made me wanna laugh n cry at the same time cuz she is probably right!

    July 6, 2010 at 1:33 pm | Report abuse |
  41. Grey Street Girl

    Libyans? I guess it's been too long since I saw the movie. I don't remember any Libyans. I'm not doubting that Libyans are, in fact, in the movie and do, in fact, kill doc, but, for the life of me, I cannot remember any Libyans in the movie. Alzheimer's is a terrible disease.

    July 6, 2010 at 1:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • Woody

      The Libyans are after the plutonium.

      July 6, 2010 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Buzz Killington

      @Woody; I think the Libyans were after money because Doc didn't pay them for the plutonium.

      July 6, 2010 at 2:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • sjs

      The Libyans were mad because Doc Brown was supposed to build them a nuclear bomb, but instead he gave them a box of pinball machine parts

      July 6, 2010 at 2:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • Homeland chief

      Then doc brown was aiding terrorist, which is a major federal offence.

      July 6, 2010 at 8:26 pm | Report abuse |
  42. Kristen

    It's been awhile since I've seen the movie but doesn't Doc talk first about going to the future before he dials in the day he got hit in the head with the toilet seat and came up with the idea for the Flux capacitor? Damn Libyans!!

    July 6, 2010 at 1:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • Robb

      Kristen, the scenes are very close together. After Doc sends Einstein 1 minute into the future, he sits down in the DeLorean to show Marty how it works. However, while dialing dates into the time circuits, he only gives hypothetical examples of going into the past to witness historical events. He tells Marty the story about 11/5/55, and then gets out of the DeLorean and tells Marty it runs on plutonium. He gets their radiation suits together, they "fuel up" the DeLorean, and it's then (for the first time) that Doc tells Marty he plans to travel 25 years into the future. Right after telling Marty this, the Libyans drive into the parking lot in their VW van, and Doc never gets into the DeLorean again, leaving 11/5/55 as the last date entered in the time circuits.

      July 6, 2010 at 1:27 pm | Report abuse |
  43. Robb

    November 5th,1955 is the date Doc enters into the time circuits when he is talking with Marty about examples of past dates that can be visited, and reminds himself of the date in the past when he invented the Flux Capacitor. However, in the next scene, as they are still in the Twin Pines Mall parking lot in 1985 (before anything has changed), he says he will be going 25 years into the future...meaning he intends to input a date sometime in 2010, but the Libyans kill him before he gets a chance. When Marty jumps into the DeLorean to escape them, he accidentally turns the time circuits on, and November 5th 1955 is the date still in the time circuits only because it is the last one Doc entered.

    July 6, 2010 at 1:09 pm | Report abuse |
  44. Doc Brown

    1.21 Gigawatts!!!!???

    July 6, 2010 at 1:08 pm | Report abuse |
  45. ernest

    Its Nov 5th 1955...

    July 6, 2010 at 12:52 pm | Report abuse |
  46. Robb

    In the first film, just after Doc and Marty load the plutonium into the DeLorean for Doc's intended trip into the future (and just before the Libyans show up), Marty asks if the future is where Doc is headed. Doc responds, "That's right, 25 years into the future...I'll even be able to see who wins the next 25 World Series." 25 years from 1985 is 2010. Therefore, some day this year WOULD theoretically be future day, but we will never know the exact day because Doc was shot by the Lybians before he got the chance to get into the DeLorean and input his actual intended future date into the time circuits.

    July 6, 2010 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Reverend Flash

      We can only assume that if Doc had planned – on October 26th, 1985 – to travel 25 years into the future, then he would have simply set the coordinates to October 26th, 2010 (unless he had some other 'scientist reasons' for picking an alternate date).

      May 4, 2012 at 11:48 am | Report abuse |
  47. jc

    Jason, It wasnt Marty's dog, the dog, Einstein, belonged to Doc Brown.

    July 6, 2010 at 12:33 pm | Report abuse |
  48. Jason

    July 5, 2010 was, however, the date Marty's dog traveled to

    July 6, 2010 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jon

      It wasn't Marty's dog it was Doc Brown's dog, Einstein.

      July 6, 2010 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chuck

      So did you even ever watch the movie? Because Einstein travels ONE MINUTE into the future. You know, you can actually tell pretty easily by the fact that Einstein and the DeLorean show up ONE MINUTE later, the Doc says it, and then shows the stopwatches that are ONE MINUTE apart.

      You should watch the entire movie some time, it's pretty good. And fact check next time. Then you can be righteous when you post comments.

      July 6, 2010 at 5:49 pm | Report abuse |
  49. TGraham

    If you find the original movie trailer, Doc mentions the date, October 21, 2015.

    July 6, 2010 at 12:04 pm | Report abuse |
  50. Allison

    This is definitely one of the greatest trilogies out there. My only worry is that Hollywood would attempt to remake it because they can't think of anything on their own and are remaking EVERYTHING at this point. Hopefully they won't touch this one because Michael J. Fox MADE Marty McFly, along with all the rest of the cast. 🙂 I'm looking forward to what Martin said, the Anniversary Trilogy. I didn't know it was coming out, but since I know now, I'll be waiting for it. Thanks for the info Martin!

    July 6, 2010 at 11:59 am | Report abuse |
  51. Martin

    Don't forget, Back to the Future – The 25th Anniversary Trilogy, arrives on Blu-ray this October 26th. In addition to a fully restored hi-def audio and video treatment, it's chock full of new extras for true BTTF fans. (Footage of Eric Stoltz as Marty McFly, anyone?) And no, I don't work for Mayor Goldie Wilson... I'm just a fan of the series, and I like the sound of that!

    July 6, 2010 at 11:42 am | Report abuse |
  52. David Lewis

    It was, indeed, the first movie where at the end Emmit goes into the future. The second movie picks up when Emmitcomes back from that future and takes Marty and his girl with him. I'm not sure on the dates chosen but 2015 sounds right.

    July 6, 2010 at 11:38 am | Report abuse |
  53. Summer

    This completely made my day. Any time I get a lil MJF in may day is a veryyyy good day indeed!!

    July 6, 2010 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
  54. Bob

    Terrible article, made all the worse by the lack of fact checking. Marty originally travels back to Nov 5th, 1955.

    July 6, 2010 at 11:32 am | Report abuse |
  55. Dyson

    either way he had to be going 88 mph

    July 6, 2010 at 11:26 am | Report abuse |
  56. kate golden

    ah here don't really care I WANT MY HOVER BOARD !!!!! NOOOOOOOWWW

    July 6, 2010 at 11:25 am | Report abuse |
    • "We Were Promised Jetpacks"

      Almost there, but still some work to do: http://www.pcworld.com/article/197371/hoverboard_project_takes_flightand_actually_hovers.html

      July 6, 2010 at 2:27 pm | Report abuse |
  57. Mommy

    Someone needs to check their dates again. It is November 12, 1955, that he travels to.

    July 6, 2010 at 11:20 am | Report abuse |
    • Tim

      November 5, 1955 – Marty arrives in the past.
      November 12, 1955 – The clock tower gets hit by lightning and Marty goes back...TO THE FUTURE!

      July 6, 2010 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
  58. dusty

    actually marty didnt travel back to Oct 26th 1955, he went back to Nov. 5 1955...had he gone back to Oct 26th then Doc had not yet created the Flux Capaciter

    July 6, 2010 at 11:19 am | Report abuse |
    • Jeff

      10/25/2010 is the 25th anniversary of the day the film's action begins – 10/26/2010 the 25th anniversary of the day the Marty gets in the DeLorean. Originally Doc Brown says he is going 25 years into the future, but then thinks better of it and later in the film picks 30 years as a "nice round number."

      October 26, 2010 at 12:21 pm | Report abuse |

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