Michael J. Fox Meets Actor Casey Likes Who Plays Marty McFly in 'Back to the Future' on Broadway

“He's done a lot for so many people and to be a part of that legacy is really really special,” Casey Likes, 21, who plays Fox's character Marty McFly in the new Broadway adaption, told Inside Edition about an hour before meeting Fox for the first time. 

A storm and lightning strike is to blame for the clock tower to stop working in the fictional Hill Valley back in 1955. So it was only appropriate that a thunderstorm and a downpour would set the stage outside the Winter Garden Theatre in New York City Tuesday before a special gala performance of "Back to the Future The Musical' on Broadway. The show officially opens August 3. 

The rain eventually subsided and instead of thunder crashing between interviews on the red carpet, there were big cheers as Michael J. Fox arrived.

The actor reunited with his former 1985 movie co-stars Lea Thompson and Christopher Lloyd. The trio posed for pictures in front of a parked DeLorean — alongside the movie’s screenwriter, who also penned the musical’s script, Bob Gale. Broadway actors Roger Bart and Casey Likes, who plays Marty McFly, were also arm-in-arm alongside the OGs. 

“He's done a lot for so many people and to be a part of that legacy is really really special,” Likes, 21, told Inside Edition about an hour before meeting Fox for the first time. 

“Michael is such a huge part of what made this miracle I get to do every night happen. So we want to do everything we can to support him and to support research for, and hopefully a cure for Parkinson's one day,” said Roger Bart to Inside Edition. 

Fox has been battling Parkinson’s since 1991. In 2000, he founded the Michael J. Fox Foundation, which has since raised more than 1.5 billion dollars for Parkinson’s research. The evening’s performance was followed by a gala fundraiser for the foundation. 

Celebrities including director Steven Spielberg, who produced the movie, and Josh Gad were in attendance. “He's like a hero,” said actress Bernadette Peters on the red carpet before the show. “He's an amazing guy and he's persevered.” 

The "Back to the Future" filmmakers who have been working on the Broadway adaptation knew there were scenes from the movie that had to be in the musical. “From my perspective, it was to say, what are the inalienable elements of 'Back to the Future' that have to be there,” Gale told Inside Edition about translating for the stage.

Alan Silvestri, who wrote the score for the movie, also worked on the musical alongside Glen Ballard, who penned songs for Alanis Morissette.  “Does George McFly have to say, ‘You're my density?’ Damn right, he does. Does Doc Brown say, ‘If you're going to build a time machine, why not do it with some style?’ Yes, of course.” 

Other iconic film lines are also in the musical. Of course, so is the great clock tower scene. “It goes down exactly how it goes down in the movie. But what's different is that it's happening live in front of your face, and there's no edits, there's no CGI. It's all real,” Likes teased for audiences. 

This is Likes’ second leading role on Broadway in a year. He played William Miller in "Almost Famous" last season. His co-star, Liana Hunt, who plays his mother, Lorraine McFly, says his interpretation of Marty is “uncanny” to Michael J. Fox. 

“The mannerisms, his voice, his look. I think it's really shocking to see how much he gives a Michael J. Fox essence while still being himself and bringing himself to this role. It's really something,” Hunt said about Likes to Inside Edition on the carpet. 

Likes’ mom was also there, arriving with the rest of his family in the middle of the storm. Likes stood outside in pouring rain (albeit staying dry under the marquee) for them before the curtain went up. 

“'Back to the Future' was my very first date movie and Michael J. Fox was my locker pinup guy,” Likes’ mom and former Broadway actress, Stephanie Likes, recalled. “And when Casey was growing up, he was just that charismatic, adorable personality. I was always like, ‘You remind me so much of my favorite actor, Michael J. Fox.’ And then when I found out he was Marty McFly, I was like, ‘Are you kidding me?’ It was ... Wow!” 

Nathaniel Hackmann, who plays Biff on Broadway, says getting into character was a piece of cake. He barely needed to watch the movie. 

“To prepare, hardly at all because I wore out the videotape as a kid. I had that old copy from Blockbuster that I never returned, that I probably still owe late fees on that I took from Blockbuster. I didn't need any preparation time to watch the movie. I have known this and loved this property as long as I've known and loved anything,” he said enthusiastically. 

Hackmann says he cried when he first saw how the DeLorean would maneuver on stage. For the audience — and even the cast who knows the secrets behind its movement — it’s a true spectacle. “Imagine seeing the DeLorean time travel live. Everything you think that's going to be, times it by 10. That's what you can expect from 'Back to the Future The Musical,'” said Hugh Coles, who plays George McFly. 

“It's very small,” Bart revealed about the DeLorean used in the show. “It's about two thirds of the size of a regular DeLorean, but it basically is the exact same design. It's really exciting to be in it. I don't think I've ever had an entrance that's been more amazing than the one I have in the show, and I won't say anything more about that.” 

By the time the curtain rose for the show to begin, The DeLorean, which had been parked outside the theater, had already left the scene. Perhaps on its way to another event or another rainstorm.