BACK to the Future star Lea Thompson plans to delve into her own past when she heads for Scotland this weekend – by reliving her honeymoon.
The actress, who played Lorraine Baines in the iconic 80s flick, is one of the star guests at Comic Con north east taking place tomorrow and Sunday in Aberdeen.
And the California-based star says she and her husband, Pretty in Pink director Howard Deutch, 72, can’t wait to mark a special occasion north of the border.
She said: “I am really excited, I have wanted to go to Scotland my whole life and it’s my first time.
“My husband and I have been working in different places for a long time, almost a half a year. He’s finishing his job and he’s going to meet me there and we’re going to have our second honeymoon in Scotland.”
And the fan event, taking place at the P&J Live arena and also featuring guests from fan favourite movies and TV shows such as former Doctor Whos Sylvester McCoy, Peter Davidson and Colin Baker, is the perfect excuse to make the trip.
Lea, 61, said: “My very best friend’s grandpa and grandma on both sides are from Scotland, she’s been my best friend for over 40 years, and I love her so much.
“I just imagine there would be more people like her, that laughed a little bit easier, that didn’t take themselves so seriously.
“My husband and I usually celebrate our anniversary of when we first started dating, which was on Valentine’s day, but we couldn’t be together this year so we’re going to celebrate in Scotland.”
The performer is hoping to find some off-the-beaten track spots to discover on her much-anticipated visit.
She added: “I am excited to explore Aberdeen. I always wanted to go to Edinburgh and be there for the festival but I’ve never had that opportunity, it has always seemed like a very glamorous artistic place, and of course Glasgow too. We don’t have enough time to go everywhere, sadly, but we’re going to tour around. I like to find weird places that aren’t exactly on the books. I couldn’t be more excited.”
Lea shot to global fame in 1985 when sci-fi movie Back to the Future hit screens, followed by successful second and third instalments. The film has achieved cult status attracting generations of fans in the nearly four decades since as well as more than £280m at the box office, with anniversary rereleases over the years bumping up the total.
And while it might be almost 40 years since the first picture was released, mum-of-two Lea said she’s still constantly blown away by its popularity.
The actress turned director said: “It’s had such a resurgence. I think it’s because people like to show it to their kids and then they like to show it to their kids, it’s a generational thing. “Whenever I look out at an audience when I am doing a Q&A, half of the people weren’t even born when the movie came out.”
And she reckons there’s still something for everyone in the movie series.
Lea said: “Generations have found it for different reasons. If you watched the first one when you’re seven you’ll get one thing out of it, if you watch it when you’re 15 you’ll get another thing out of it, if you watch it when you’re 30 or 50, you get different things depending on how old you are.
“You could be like ‘the skateboard is so cool and there’s a truck with poo in it’, or you can feel like it’s a great message, if you do the right thing at the right time you can change your whole life if you have the courage to stand up for yourself.”
While the star will be celebrating a belated Valentine’s day with her husband, she’ll actually be in Scotland for mother’s day. Lea and Howard are parents to two daughters, Madelyn, 31, and 28-year-old Zoey Deutch, who have both followed them into showbiz. Madelyn wrote and starred in movie The Year of Spectacular Men while sister Zoey has fronted Netflix flick Set it Up.
But while Lea has loved her career in film she was nervous about her children following suit.
She said: “I imagine there’s a bit of a genetic component because entertainment is on both sides of their family tree.
“I am sad to see so much disappointment – that’s something you have to be able to handle but when it’s your child it’s really hard. I have lived through my disappointments and my husband’s disappointments, movies that didn’t do well, bad reviews, auditions you didn’t get or lows in your career. It was hard to know I was going to go through all of that with my kids.
“But it’s also fun in a lot of ways because we all can talk about the same things, we all understand each other’s victories and defeats.”
And she thinks the recent scrutiny so-called ‘nepo babies’ come under is unfair.
She added: “It’s an old tradition where people follow each other into a trade, whether it’s a blacksmith or a tailor. They have been trying to make a big deal of that lately with nepo babies – it’s annoying because it’s normal to follow your family into the trade and people don’t realise working in entertainment is a trade. It’s incredible hard work and a real skill.
“One thing that is good specifically in showbusiness is that the kids know it’s not like ‘I have one job and all of a sudden I have a jet’. They know they have to work hard and continue to keep trying.”
After this weekend’s event in Aberdeen, Lea will be back behind the camera as her directing work continues to grow while she also hopes to be filming series two of US comedy detective series The Spencer Sisters, which is planned for UK release.
INTERVIEWING Lea was a real bucket list moment for me as a life-long Back to the Future fan.
I grew up in a house where lines like ‘He’s a peeping Tom’ and ‘You’re my density’ were endlessly quoted between my dad and I.
And when I met my husband at a mutual friend’s wedding the first song we danced together to was Marvin Berry’s Earth Angel, from the closing scene of the movie.
It became our song, with my then boyfriend playing it while he popped the question in our Glasgow flat and a traditional Canarian trio playing a Mariachi style version of it for our first dance at our wedding.
And Lea said stories like ours have touched her over the 48 years since the film’s release.
She told me: “Your story is so beautiful. I feel like there’s a whole bunch of those stories, it really does resonate and mean so much to people.
“Just a little while ago I was at a Comic-Con with Michael, Tom and Christpher Lloyd and we are all still pinching ourselves.
“We feel so honoured and blessed to have this – and that’s what I hope to do with my work, be able to touch people and help them.
“If you’re having a bad day, help to lift you up and give you a respite from the problems of your day.
“We all pinch ourselves that we have been given this gift that we can make people smile or happy or when they meet us remember something from their lives.”
For now Lea can’t wait to head for Scotland to meet fans, enjoy a romantic break with her hubby and spread a bit of that love around.
She said: “There’s never a Comic Con that goes by when someone isn’t really emotional and I always get emotional too because it’s an honour to witness that kind of thing.
“People get engaged in front of us dressed up like Lorraine and George. It’s crazy but I couldn’t be more excited.”
– Comic Con Scotland North East, featuring stars from The Walking Dead, Doctor Who and Stranger Things among others, takes place tomorrow and Sunday at the P&J Live. For tickets and info log onto comicconscotlandnortheast.co.uk
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