Part 1

 Actual Southern California locations where "Back to the Future" was filmed.
.[ Click here for an interactive MAP of all B.T.T.F. locations!].

"Back to the Future" opens with 'Marty McFly' (Michael J. Fox) trying out
 his electric guitar in Doc Brown's garage/lab.

When Marty leaves and gets on his skateboard,
we see what is supposed to be Doc's garage/lab behind him.

However, in real life it was merely a temporary facade they put up
 (next to the Burger King) that resembles a beat-up version of the
 actual garage (see below) next to the Gamble House, the historic
Craftsman home in Pasadena, which served as Doc Brown's
 original 1955 home in the movie.

Here's a photo (below) of that same parking lot as it looks in 2009 - minus
 the temporary garage facade, of course. (Courtesy of Steve Mynott.)
Note the center diagonal stripe in the lot in both photos.

Marty skateboards past a Burger King restaurant,
then hitches a tow off the back of a passing truck.

That Burger King was real, and better yet, it's still there!

It's located in Burbank, the city which is home to
 Walt Disney Studios and Warner Bros Studios.

The address is 535 N. Victory Blvd.,
in Burbank (just north of W. Cypress Ave.)

When we see the truck tow him up the street,
they are heading north on Victory Blvd.

Below is a photo of that same Burger King, in 2009.
(Courtesy of Steve Mynott.)

Victory Blvd is one of the few real streets you'll see in "Back to the Future".

During the skateboarding scene, the movie abruptly switches to a fake street
 in 'Hill Valley' (above), which is really a large outdoor set on the back lot of
 a nearby movie studio. That set is  now nicknamed "Courthouse Square".

(They made the 'town' look dingy and run-down for 1985,
 then spruced it up for its younger version in 1955.)

The good news is that even though the neighborhood isn't real, you can still visit it!

Courthouse Square is one of the large, permanent street sets at
 Universal Studios Hollywood, and you can see it up close
when you take the Universal studios tram tour (which is free
 with admission to the Universal Studios Hollywood theme park).

Over the years, it has been used as a small town set for many movies,
and ofen changes its look from production to production.


The shot above is of 1985 Hill Valley.  Note the smog and duller colors.

The shot below is from later in the film, when Marty returns to
 1955 Hill Valley, when the town is newer and cleaner.

Same set. Note the brighter colors and the blue sky.

Marty then heads to school.

"Hill Valley High School" is an actual high school (with a fake name),
but it's located about 30 miles away from the Burbank/Universal area

In reality, it's Whittier High School, located at
 12417 E. Philadelphia St., in Whittier, CA.

(Whittier may be best known as home to former President Richard Nixon.
He attended this high school from 1928 to 1930 - some 25 years before Marty's visit.)

And here's how the school looks today, in 2009:

(thanks to Steve again)

We see Marty and his group ("The Pinheads") try out at an audition
for a "Battle of the Bands".

(Their performance is too much for the adult judges,
 who pronounce them "Just too loud.")

This scene was shot not far from the Burger King, at
McCambridge Recreation Center in McCambridge Park,
at 1515 Glenoaks Blvd, in Burbank.

More "Back to the Future" Locations!

Page 1   -   Page 2   -   Page 3

The photos on this page are stills from the DVD of "Back to the Future"
(which you can buy by clicking here) and are copyright Universal Pictures.

The rest of the page is copyright Gary J. Wayne - 2016 /