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You know the memes, you've seen the photographic evidence, and yet the theory that Donald Trump was the inspiration for Biff Tannen was something that just seemed like another fun coincidence that Back To The Future had predicted. As it turns out, the Tannen/Trump connection was completely and utterly intentional.
Variety reported on an interview with Bob Gale, the screenwriter of the Back To The Future series, and the truth was finally revealed. While he could have done a song and dance about the recent trend of identifying Biff Tannen as a Trump surrogate, he flat out confirmed it in the following, bullshit-free, statement:
We thought about it when we made the movie! Are you kidding?
While his most recent foray into the 2016 presidential race is what defines him these days, Trump used to be regarded as a somewhat successful businessman who dabbled in both real estate and casino gambling. If he owned a building, it was the tallest he could build it, and it had his name slapped right on the front entrance. It seemed like the richer Donald Trump got, the more despised he was. So naturally, when the time came for Biff Tannen to steal Gray's Sports Almanac and make an insane amount of money in Back To The Future Part II, what he would do with such a fortune was a foregone conclusion.
Satire holds up a mirror to the world, and lets us see what the truth looks like in slightly distorted manner. So if the scene where Marty McFly is surveying the alternate, Biff Tannen influenced 1985 is meant to be a comment on Donald Trump's prowess as a businessman / politician, does this mean that the scene below could be our fate under a Trump presidency?
All kidding aside, it's surprising that it took this long for Bob Gale to confirm Donald Trump as the inspiration for Biff Tannen's drive for money and power. With both the franchise's 25th anniversary, as well as Trump's sudden notoriety as a reality television superstar being in the recent past, you'd think that someone would have said something a lot sooner. At least Gale took the opportunity the 30th anniversary presented him and revealed the not-so-shocking truth about the biggest bully in Hill Valley. Kind of makes you wondering what revelations the 40th anniversary will bring in 2025, doesn't it?
The Back To The Future Trilogy is currently available on DVD and Blu Ray, in a nifty new 30th anniversary collection. Though if you're just getting out of the big AMC Theaters marathon that ran tonight, then please accept our courteous welcome to the world of the future!