One of the most iconic scenes in ’80s movies involves ‘Marty McFly’ playing guitar on the hit songs ‘Johnny B. Goode,’ and ‘Earth Angel.’ The scene from the blockbuster film ‘Back to the Future’ is etched in our minds.
In a recent interview with Empire, Michael J. Fox, who played ‘Marty McFly,’ spoke about the scene. He had to pretend to play impressive guitar solos, requiring a large amount of prep.
Michael recounted, “When I did the ‘Johnny B. Goode’ scene, I had a great guitar teacher who taught me how to play. I said to Bob [Zemeckis], ‘When I do this scene, I play guitar, so you can finger sync me. Feel free to cut to my hands any time you want.’
Michael admitted to not being the most incredible guitar player. His guitar teacher taught him to look good while playing, but Michael still had to learn the fancy footwork for which Chuck Berry was noted.
When Marty is asked to play lead in the film, he rocks out on the guitar riff to ‘Johnny B. Goode.’ He gets carried away, pulling off signature rock moves and knocking over speakers. Everyone dances until he completely loses control.
When Marty realizes everyone is staring at him, he knows he’s gone too far. Chuck Berry’s cousin happens to be the guitar player Marty replaced in the band. Cousin Marvin calls Chuck on the phone and holds the receiver up to the stage.
He yells into the phone, “You know that new sound you’re looking for? Well, listen to this!” In one of the film’s most important moments, Michael J. Fox delivers a believable guitar performance as ‘Marty McFly!’