About the Filmmakers

Back to the Future

Director ROBERT ZEMECKIS, considered to be one of the most talented young filmmakers working today, most recently completed the 1984 hit, "Romancing the Stone," starring Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner.

A 1973 graduate of the USC School of Cinema, Zemeckis showed his Academy Award winning student film, "Field of Honor," to Steven Spielberg and John Milius, who arranged for him and his USC writing partner, Bob Gale, to develop their next script, "1941," which Spielberg later directed. Zemeckis made his directorial debut in 1978 with "I Wanna Hold Your Hand," a comically nostalgic story of a group of New Jersey teenagers who travel to Manhattan during the Beatles' first trip to New York.

Zemeckis then directed another Zemeckis-Gale screenplay, based on an idea from Spielberg and Milius, "Used Cars," which starred Kurt Russell.

Born and raised in the southside of Chicago, Zemeckis began making short films with his 8mm camera while still in high school. He attended Northern Illinois University before transferring to the University of Southern California.

Writer-Producer BOB GALE, whom California magazine called "one of today's hottest young writers,"was born and raised in a suburb of St. Louis, Missouri. He attended Tulane University as an engineering major, but soon opted for a film program and transferred to the USC School of Cinema.

There, he met Robert Zemeckis and the talented duo came to the attention of several prominent filmmakers. In addition to writing and producing "Used Cars," Gale wrote the novelization of "1941" and continues to write screenplays, both with Zemeckis and on his own.

Producer NEIL CANTON most recently produced "The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai." Born and raised in New York City, Canton graduated from American University in Washington, D.C., and landed a summer job with noted director Peter Bogdanovich. Canton continued as his assistant for six films, and worked on such productions as "What's Up, Doc?", "Paper Moon" and "Nickelodeon." He also spent two years on Orson Welles' long-awaited "The other Side of the Wind" and then left to work with Walter Hill on "The Warriors."

Executive producers STEVEN SPIELBERG, KATHLEEN KENNEDY and FRANK MARSHALL represent an association that has not only re-written box office history, but also is responsible for fostering and developing several of the motion picture industry's most outstanding new talent.

Kathleen Kennedy served as co-producer, with Spielberg, of the biggest grossing picture in film history, "E.T., the Extra-Terrestrial." She met Spielberg as a production assistant on "1941" and later became an associate producer for "Poltergeist" and "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom." Kennedy served as co-executive producer on "Gremlins" and, along with Marshall and Spielberg, handles the same duties for a wide variety of projects, including "The Goonies" and "Young Sherlock Holmes."

Frank Marshall first worked with Spielberg as producer of 1981's blockbuster, "Raiders of the Lost Ark." He was also producer of "Poltergeist," production supervisor on "E.T., the Extra-Terrestrial" and executive producer on "Twilight Zone - the Movie," as well as on "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom."

Steven Spielberg, whose own legendary successes as a director have resulted in more than a billion dollars in box office grosses, has also emerged as an enthusiastic supporter of the motion picture industry's top young talent. As an executive producer, Spielberg plays an important role in the development of each project and remains an active contributor throughout the production of each film under his aegis.

Director of photography DEAN CUNDEY established a relationship with director Bob Zemeckis when they collaborated on "Romancing the Stone." His six-film association with director John Carpenter includes all three "Halloween" pictures "The Fog," "Escape From New York" and "The Thing." A native Californian, Cundey graduated from UCLA film school in 1968.

Production designer LARRY PAULL received an Academy Award nomination for the visually unusual "Bladerunner." Impressed by his style, Zemeckis hired Paull to design the visual concept of "Romancing the Stone" and the association proved to be a good one. Paull's additional credits include an upcoming release, "American Flyer," as well as "Doctor Detroit," "In God We Trust," "Blue Collar" and "W.W. and the Dixie Dance Kings" among others.

Composer ALAN SILVESTRI is virtually self-taught as a film composer. After attending the Berklee College of Music, Silvestri played guitar for the Wayne Cochran Band in Las Vegas, and eventually ended up in Los Angeles. In 1972, a friend asked Silvestri if he knew anything about scoring motion pictures. Eager for a job, Silvestri said yes, then read up on the subject and got hired to do "The Doberman Gang." This led to more low budget feature work, followed by five years of television's "CHIPS." More recently, Silvestri scored "Cat's Eye," "Fandango" and "Romancing The Stone" for director Robert Zemeckis.

Film editor ARTHUR SCHMIDT grew up around cutting rooms because his father was a film editor. His credits include the feature films "Marathon Man," "Jaws II," "The Idolmaker," "Firstborn" and "Coal Miner's Daughter," for which he received an Academy Award nomination, in addition to the highly acclaimed TV movie, "The Jericho Mile," for which he took home an Emory.

Film editor HARRY KERAMIDAS came to the film business by way of the Peace Corps. His interest in anthropology and human cultures led him to the Ethnographic Film Division at UCLA, and then into a joint project with the Office of Economic Opportunity and the Canadian Film Board, for which he worked in various capacities on 70 films in one year! After working several years on various documentaries and educational films for Encyclopedia Britannica, Keramidas moved into low budget features, then to television where he edited "The Hardy Boys-Nancy Drew Mysteries" and various TV movies. Keramidas' recent credits include "Children of the Corn," "Bustin' Loose" and "Scared Straight: Another Story."

The special effects for "Back to the Future" were created by George Lucas' Industrial Light & Magic (ILM), the company which has won five consecutive Academy Awards for its work on "The Empire Strikes Back," "Raiders of the Los Ark," "E.T.," "Return of the Jedi" and "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom."

KEN RALSTON supervised the ILM crew who developed the time travel effects for "Back to the Future." Ralston has served as visual effects supervisor for "Star Trek II" and "III," "Return of the Jedi" (for which he won an Academy Award) and the upcoming film "Cocoon."

Steven Spielberg presents a Robert Zemeckis film "Back to the Future," starring Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd, Lea Thompson, Crispin Glover and Thomas F. Wilson. The screenplay is by Robert Zemeckis and Bob Gale, with music by Alan Silvestri. It is produced by Bob Gale and Neil Canton. The executive producers are Steven Spielberg, Kathleen Kennedy and Frank Marshall. The director is Robert Zemeckis.

as of June 5, 1985

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