London – Amid the beards and the Birkenstocks of trendy East London lies Lou's Cafe, where milkshakes are on the menu and Buddy Holly is on the radio. Alongside it are beauty parlour Elite Salon, Roy's Records, Ruth's Frock Shop and the Hill Valley post office.
No, Hill Valley is not London's newest borough, it is the fictional town of 1980s cult trilogy Back to the Future, and each of these stores are pop-up shops created by immersive cinematic company Secret Cinema, to take visitors back to the past.
In August, Secret Cinema will turn Back to the Future into an immersive event. The company is rebuilding the entire town of Hill Valley and before opening night guests can visit Ruth's Frock Shop to buy dresses suited to the 1950s, the decade that Marty McFly (Michael J Fox) visits in the first film. They can also have their hair properly coiffed, and send out postcards, which will presumably show up during the live event, and interact with actors from the show, who are already in character.
The pop-up shops are a new venture from Secret Cinema, and a perfect way to extend the experience while also commercialising it. As Futuretainment becomes the only way to entertain, brands will have to consider new ways to surprise consumers. For more, see our macrotrend.