Some actors are either blessed or cursed (depending on your point of view, or their mood on the day you ask them) with that one role with which they will forever be associated, and they can either spend a career running from it or they can embrace it and ride the wave that brings with it loving tributes, bizarre tie-ins, and seemingly unending fan clamor.
For Christopher Lloyd, that role is Back to the Future’s Dr. Emmett “Doc” Brown. And when faced with the decision to run from Doc or dive deeper, Lloyd has chosen to strap in and don his lab coat whenever he’s called upon. And fans love him for it.
It’s not like Lloyd hasn’t had memorable roles before or since—he made a name for himself as “Rev. Jim” on the classic sitcom Taxi and became a cult film legend with the likes of The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension, Clue, Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, and a host of others—but his portrayal of Doc Brown has become a cultural institution, so much so that he’s been asked to reprise it again and again in strange and unusual ways since 1985.
As we celebrate “Back to the Future Day” today—October 21, 2015, the day Doc and Marty arrive in the “future” in Back to the Future II—Fast Company had a chance to talk to Lloyd about his Doc Brown life outside of the BTTF franchise itself, from cartoons to commercials to music videos to theme parks. Check out the slide show above to find out more about Doc’s wild rides.
Just don’t expect Lloyd to hand over the torch to any Doc Brown wannabes any time soon. When asked about potential remakes, the actor isn’t letting anyone else touch his radiation suit.
“Nope! Nope! I’m keeping Doc to myself!”