Welcome back….to the future film fans! We’re continuing our cool and comprehensive coverage going in Part Two of our OUTATIME Blu-ray Day Coverage celebrating the release of the new documentary OUTATIME: Saving the DeLorean Time Machine out today on Blu-ray, DVD and VOD with some filmmaker and head restoration team member insight via our own Q&A. From their own fondness of all things Back to the Future and DeLorean Time Machine related to their thoughts on the restoration itself we’re chatting one-on-one with the guys who made it all happen doc Director/Producer Steve Concotelli and Head of Restoration Joe Walser – hit 88 and take it away guys!
Head of Restoration Joe Walser & Director Steve Concotelli
So dug the doc and it made me appreciate your restoration work even more Joe…
Joe Walser: Thank you. It’s definitely a little truer to the experience than the twenty minute version was which was good, but you couldn’t get into all the nitty-gritty. But also the hour version barely touches the surface. I’m going that’s how it was…times a hundred!
How big a Back to the Future fan and DeLorean time machine fan are you?
JW: I’ve always been a huge fan of Back to the Future. I do believe it’s probably one of the few scripts that I would consider almost perfect. And I’m a huge fan of the car, but I don’t think you can be a huge fan of the car without being a huge fan of the movie and the franchise.
Steve Concotelli: I always thought I was a huge Back to the Future fan until I met Joe and the guys on the restoration team and quite frankly they put me to shame. Where I grew up in the Midwest I knew every line from the film and I always wanted a DeLorean and I was pretty geeky. But then here in Los Angeles I met these guys who have built their own time machine replicas and they’ve taken Back to the Future fandom to a level I can’t even imagine. So I discovered that I’m a big Back to the Future fan, but there are certainly much bigger.
In the doc they mention that nobody could be a better helmer of the restoration team then you Joe – what did you bring to the table?
JW: It was kind of a perfect storm situation for the car and for me. A lot of things had to line up perfectly for the restoration to happen. Not only was I a fan, but also I had the background and even more than that what set me apart was my attention to detail. My goal when I got into this hobby, the hobby of building myself a DeLorean time machine, I got known pretty quickly for taking every project too far – at least too far from their sense. All the details were important to me to get perfect. Also I’m a team builder – I’m well aware there are some things I can’t personally do. But I don’t need to know how to do those things because I know how to find people who do know. My background as an art director is managing teams of very talented people all working together to get one great thing accomplished – I embrace the team aspect of it.
So being part of the restoration team how did you become the filmmaker of the experience Steve?
SC: When I found out Joe was going to get the restoration I wanted to be on the team. And Joe said, ‘Great – what can you do? Are you a mechanic?’ ‘No.’ ‘Are you good with prop restoration?’ ‘No.’ ‘Do you know anything about DeLorean’s?’ ‘No.’ So he said, ‘What can you do?’ I said, ‘I’m a good filmmaker.’ He said, ‘THAT’S your job!’ So my job became not to help with the actual restoration, but simply document the restoration in the hopes that we would someday be able to turn it into the film that ultimately became OUTATIME. I knew that the restoration was something that Back to the Future fans want to see because I wanted to see it.
Of the car what was your favorite part from seeing it in the film vs. when you were restoring it Joe?
JW: All the usual suspects are my favorite like the Flux Capacitor, Mr. Fusion and the time circuits. But it’s hard to say because we put so much focus on each one of those parts and discovered things about them that nobody else knew. And not all those discoveries came during the restoration – the team I put together was just obsessed about every detail. There were discoveries along the way both because we had the hero A-car in our possession and there were a lot of things learned about it that way and the act of being a team helped us figure things out we couldn’t have on our own. We could bounce ideas off each other – it was an amazing and rewarding project.
Can you talk about what it was like to put together the film with interviews, archival footage and the like and the difficulties?
SC: Well, making a documentary film is miserable. (Laughs) And that’s part of the process, but when you have a project like this that you’re passionate about it’s difficult. The film was similar to the restoration itself – way longer than you expected and not all fun and games.
JW: The restoration story has just as many arcs and weaves as the movie.
SC: But hopefully like the restoration at the end of the day when it’s all said and done you look back on it and say boy that was worth it. The hardest thing was I made it essentially by myself. Don’t get me wrong I had a lot of help from Joe and the restoration team. But the actually production of it – I did the vast majority of shooting, I wrote it, I edited it and did all the graphics. And I don’t say that proudly, I say that as that was a stupid thing to do – I really should have had a lot more people help me on this! This film consumed the last four years of my life, but I did it because it was a passion project and I think fans on all levels will enjoy it.
Tell me a bit about working with Joe?
SC: Working with Joe sometimes can be very difficult – he’s very demanding, he’s very particular and he demands perfection. And that same intensity he had for the restoration he brought to film. He wanted the film to be the best possible and he pushed me hard every step of the way to make it better. But we both knew the goal was to make the best product possible and just like the car is fantastic now because he pushed the team, the movie is fantastic because he pushed me. Joe is not only a big part of the restoration, but a big part of why the film is so good.
By the way I love the inclusion of Universal Studios Doc Brown actor Andrew Hagen – how did you find out about him?
SC: The guys on the team know everything about Back to the Future and they knew all of the people that played Doc Brown over the years. And Andrew was there in the nineties and was one of the Docs who could speak authoritatively about the condition of the car and driving it around. He lives in California and reaching out to him and including him in the documentary was a very organic idea. And his Doc Brown voice is spot on – as soon as I heard it I knew I had to include a little bit of it in the documentary.
Any tales about the car that were left on the cutting room floor?
SC: I left about a hundred hours on the cutting room floor – a lot! But most of that is simply repetitive. I put all the good stuff that was on the cutting room floor in the bonus features and deleted scenes. We really wanted to give Back to the Future fans a fantastic experience with stuff that’s Back to the Future related, but that they haven’t seen before. So for the bonus features we really dug deep to find interesting side stories related to the time machine they’ve never heard.
That’s all Back to the Future fans! Everyone be sure to check out the damn fine doc OUTATIME: Saving the DeLorean Time Machine that hits Blu-ray/DVD/VOD today from Virgil Films!