Five weeks of filming and an unexpected goodbye. Eric Stoltz will always be the Marty McFly who was not, the failed, fired and forgotten protagonist of Return to the future.

His rematch may have been permanence, beyond fame. It boasts more than 40 films and dozens of series and plays. Although not everyone in Hollywood speaks well of him … According to the book We Don’t Need Roads: The Making of the Back to the Future Trilogy (by journalist Caseen Gaines), Stoltz left the movie “because nobody could stand him. Starting with Thomas F. Wilson, the interpreter of Biff Tannen ”.

Wilson had reason to think badly of his partner, since he had taken scenes like his clash in the cafeteria quite seriously: apparently, according to gossip, he left his body covered in bruises.

Eric Stoltz (TV Capture)

Lea Thompson (Lorraine in the film), Stoltz’s friend in real life, clarified that Eric’s character “could be very difficult”: “At that time, all young actors wanted to be like De Niro and Pacino.”

Michael J. Fox, more peaceful and less controversial, commented that “Eric wasn’t a comedian, and they, Zemeckis and screenwriter Bob Gale, needed a comedian.”

Born on September 30, 1961, in California, Eric is the son of teachers, a violinist and school teacher, and an elementary school teacher. Third of three children, Since he was a child he already made money playing the piano in local musical works.

Of German, English and Scottish family, his acting beginnings were in 1979, when he joined a theater company that performed works at the Edinburgh Festival, Scotland. In 1981 he decided to return to the United States and studied with Stella Adler and Peggy Feury in New York.

Eric did not stay where he could be and developed a solid career, even if it was not popular.  (AFP).

Eric did not stay where he could be and developed a solid career, even if it was not popular. (AFP).

His first film was Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982). The great labor coup was received after being chosen to play Marty McFly in Back to the Future (Back to the Future, 1985). The initial joy turned into a nightmare. It was replaced after five weeks of filming. Michael J. Fox (the director’s first choice for the role, who was shooting a series and didn’t have the time), but then agreed to split his hours between the Robert Zemeckis film and the hit TV fiction Family Ties.

Fired from the shoot, it seemed Fox’s destiny was to be Marty at all costs. Zemeckis later stated that while Stoltz had “an admirable way of acting,” he lacked the touch of humor he was looking for for the main character.

Despite this bad trance, the actor managed to shine in other productions, although he never achieved the worldwide popularity of Fox.


Eric Stoltz en “Mad about You”, con Helen Hunt

Golden Globe Nominee for playing Rocky Dennis in Mask (1985) and Keith Nelson in Some Kind of Wonderful (1987), Stoltz has what can be considered an eclectic curriculum that ranges from films like Pulp Fiction (1994) to independent productions of his own and others.. “There is a strange sense of accomplishment in making an independent film. Everything is against you; there is no time, and less money, you carry a bottle of glue, you put in 20 dollars. If you manage to finish the recording day, it is exciting, “he declared.

In theater he continued on the New York stages both on Broadway and off Broadway. He is remembered on TV for roles like Helen Hunt’s ex in Mad About You (1992). Today he is also concentrating on his role as director.

Father of Catherine Stoltz, 13, former partner of actresses Ally Sheedy, Jennifer Jason Leigh and Bridget Fonda, He married singer Bernadette Moley in 2005.


Eric with Christopher Lloyd in a scene from “Back to the Future” that was deleted.

Some more curiosities of his career: spent three months in a wheelchair preparing for his role in the film The Waterdance (1992). After losing the paper in Return to the future, appeared in The fly II (1989), as a character named –exactly- Marty.

On the 35th anniversary of Return to the future This year the information circulated that somehow Eric was on the tape, with his fists or parts of his body that looked like Fox but in the editing of scenes they were cast. The scene where Marty hits Biff Tannen (Thomas Wilson) in a 1955 coffee shop was specifically discussed.

By appointment The Hollywood Reporter, writer Bob Gale said about it: “It could be Eric’s fist. I think the only way to know for sure is to check the edge numbers of the original negative, but no one will risk damaging the negative by doing so. The edge numbers of the workprint may reveal the truth, but I have no idea if that exists. “

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