The Back to the Future franchise wrapped up over thirty years ago, with Back to the Future Part III. While there have been Universal rides, animated series, and various video games that expand this world, the Back to the Future movie franchise is done for good. But that hasn’t kept people from hoping that they might one day see Marty and Doc back on the big screen, and Rob Long (aka Smasher) has made a trailer that almost makes you wish they’d make a fourth installment.
This fake trailer for Back to the Future Part IV is mostly comprised of scenes from the Back to the Future trilogy, Steven Spielberg’s Ready Player One, and the Netflix Original See You Yesterday from 2019. See You Yesterday featured a cameo from Michael J. Fox, which would end up being his last role before his retirement from acting.
Much of the joy from this trailer for Back to the Future Part IV comes from the little-seen sequence from See You Yesterday, which has Michael J. Fox teaching his students about time travel, while making references to the Back to the Future series. His explanation of the power of time travel, which is punctuated by the actor saying “Great Scott” is even more powerful when placed over clips from the Back to the Future trilogy. This intercutting between See You Yesterday and Back to the Future clips reminds viewers just how much they loved watching Marty and Doc travel throughout time in a DeLorean.
Back to the Future is one of the few major properties to not be rebooted or receive a ton of sequels, and Back to the Future co-writer Bob Gale has stated definitively that there won’t be a fourth film. Speaking with Collider last year, Gale said that they didn’t want to make a sequel that was little more than a cash grab, and that they had told a complete story with the original three films. Gale also states that audiences probably wouldn’t want to see a sixty-year-old Michael J. Fox with Parkinson’s Disease returning to the role.
But Bob Gale does make it sound like there have been discussions with Universal Studios trying to continue the franchise, saying that everyone involved would make a lot of money. Gale says though, “as proud parents, we’re not going to sell our kids into prostitution.” Gale also says that there is an understanding with Steven Spielberg and Amblin that there won’t be another Back to the Future film without their blessing or involvement. At this point, it seems more likely to discover time travel than to expect a Back to the Future Part IV.
Yet the choice to not continue the Back to the Future franchise certainly seems like a good idea, leaving it as a great trilogy without the desire to return to that universe every few years. Instead of becoming an ongoing series, audiences can enjoy these three films without worry that the series will keep going. But despite that, it’s still neat to see this fake trailer for Back to the Future Part IV and imagine what a theoretical future could look like for this series.