Would Back to the Future still be a cultural icon if it were called Space Man from Pluto?
A memo sent from studio executive Sid Sheinberg to producer Steven Spielberg has just re-surfaced, saying that the studio thought the script was “terrific”, but that the title of Back to the Future left “much to be desired” and was “less than wonderful”.
Sheinberg’s recommendation was to re-title the sci-fi epic Space Man from Pluto.
As the memo explains, it would have meant Marty identifying himself as a “Space Man from Pluto”.
Sheinberg thought the new title had “heat, originality and projects fun”.
Spielberg had other ideas.
In an interview with Shortlist, screenwriter Bob Gale revealed that Spielberg wrote "a letter back which said: ‘Hi Sid, thanks for your most humorous memo, we all got a big laugh out of it, keep ‘em coming.’"
And one year later, a masterpiece was born.