Why Huey Lewis Almost Didn’t Write The Back To The Future Theme Song

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It might be hard to imagine the Back to the Future series without Huey Lewis and the News but that almost happened. As reported in USA Today, when Lewis was first approached to write the theme song to the original Back to the Future he turned them down. Find out what changed his mind after the break.

When Back to the Future was being filmed the producers wanted a great song to go along with it. Because that’s what you did in the 80s. So they turned to rising star Huey Lewis. In 1985, Huey Lewis and the News’ third album, Sports, had reached number one on the charts behind the success of four top 10 singles. “Heart and Soul” reached number eight while “I Want a New Drug,” “The Heart of Rock & Roll,” and “If This Is It” all reached number six. The producers felt Lewis’ energy and tone was a perfect fit for the film and even pitched that Marty McFly’s favorite band was Huey Lewis and the News.

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Lewis originally said no because he didn’t want to write a song called “Back to the Future.” Because wanting a new drug is fine in Lewis’ world but time travel is just wrong.

When producers told Lewis he could make any song he wanted, Lewis agreed. His song, “The Power of Love,” was released before the movie and quickly rose to the top of the charts becoming the band’s first U.S. number one hit. The experience was so positive, Lewis returned to write “Back in Time” for the second movie. Because time travel was now totally cool.

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“Power of Love” was nominated for an Academy Award but lost to Lionel Ritchie’s “Say You, Say Me” from White Nights. While that may not be one of the worst Academy oversights, that’s pretty bad. You won the Oscar that year in geek hearts everywhere, Huey.

Published by

Ryan Garcia

Father of two boys, husband, attorney for Dell (Social Media, Retail, Gaming), Broadway geek, comic book geek, science fiction geek, gadget geek.

3 thoughts on “Why Huey Lewis Almost Didn’t Write The Back To The Future Theme Song”

  1. Back In Time was written for the first movie and appeared near the end and during the closing credits. The second movie didn’t feature anything of significance.

    The third film brought us ZZ Top’s Doubleback.

    Liked by 1 person

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