- "Marty, who are you supposed to be? Clint Eastwood?"
- —Dave McFly
"Clint Eastwood" is the alias of Marty McFly during his visit to 1885. Marty realized he could not use his real name when he met his great-great-grandmother Maggie McFly and did not want her to suspect they were related. As he quickly tried to think of a new name, a glance at his fringed shirt reminded him that he had told Emmett Brown that Clint Eastwood never wore anything like it.
When Marty encountered Buford "Mad Dog" Tannen in the Palace Saloon, he continued to use the alias, thinking, perhaps, that the name alone would give him a reputation of being tough as Clint Eastwood himself. However, Buford only thought it was a "stupid name". In contrast, back in 1985A, Biff Tannen enjoyed watching A Fistful of Dollars featuring Eastwood in a western role, where Marty got his inspiration.
Marty was then after always referred to as "Mister Eastwood" by the townsfolk and his 1885 relatives. During the duel with Buford Tannen on Monday, September 7th, he took a cue from Eastwood's film and hid a cast iron stove door underneath his clothing, absorbing the gunshot. Had he not faced off with Tannen on the street, the name "Clint Eastwood" might well have ended up in Wild West lore as the "biggest yellowbelly in the West"– which might well have been a stumbling block for the future film career of the real Clint Eastwood.Marty, as "Mr. Eastwood", became part of the history of Hill Valley later in the day, stealing Locomotive 131 at gunpoint, and apparently falling with it into Shonash Ravine. The dropoff was renamed "Eastwood Ravine".
Behind the scenes
- "What kinda stupid name is that?"
- —Buford Tannen to Marty (Clint Eastwood)
The real Clint Eastwood was quite entertained at the usage of his name throughout the movie.
Ironically, Clint Eastwood's film Pale Rider was number one at the box office for one week after its release on June 28, 1985... until it was replaced at the top spot by Back to the Future. Actor Jeffrey Weissman had a small role in Pale Rider.
As pointed out by Bob Gale and Neil Canton on commentary on Part III, the third movie was filmed at the same location as Pale Rider, using the same locomotive and some of the same buildings. The DeLorean Time Machine is parked on the railroad tracks near a building that had been constructed for Pale Rider.
It's interesting to note that, during the entirety of the film, Marty was only addressed as "Clint" once - which was by Doc, as Clara (who did not, yet, know about the time machine) was standing right next to him. The first name of "Mr. Eastwood" (Marty) was known to the townspeople by the time of the gunfight, including by one of the old-timers, Jeb, who warned Marty that if he didn't go out to the fight, "Everybody, everywhere, will say Clint Eastwood is the biggest yeller belly in the west!" Marty had identified himself as "Clint Eastwood" to Maggie McFly (who then introduced him by that name to Seamus McFly. Marty also answered Buford Tannen's "What's your name dude?" question with "Eastwood. Clint Eastwood." In 1985, actor Clint Eastwood was well-known and had recently returned to Westerns (with the summer blockbuster Pale Rider). Dave, seeing his little brother dressed up like a cowboy (a few days before Halloween), asked "Who are you supposed to be? Clint Eastwood?".
- In the cartoon Fievel's American Tails, Hal Rayle voiced a caricature of Eastwood named Clint Mousewood.
- Matt Clark, who was Chester the bartender of Palace Saloon, also played a bartender in a Clint Eastwood western, The Outlaw Josey Wales (1976).
- Back to the Future Part II (the real Eastwood is featured in A Fistful of Dollars)
- Back to the Future Part III (Marty is referred to as Clint Eastwood. The real Eastwood does not appear but is mentioned by Marty and Dave.)
- Back to the Future Part III novelization
- Back to the Future Part III (video game)
- Back to the Future: The Game
- Back to the Future: The Game - Episode 1: It's About Time (A newspaper detailing Clint's supposed death in 1885 is in Edna Strickland's apartment)
- Back to the Future: Untold Tales and Alternate Timelines