October 21st, 2015. The future finally arrived, and went.
However, its arrival felt bittersweet for the team at Giant Panda King as earlier in that year we had pitched our ultimate pop-up bar/cafe idea the Sydney Film Festival and perfect Sponsor. We managed to get the blessing from the Film Festival, but couldn’t get approval, nor the cash from the Sponsor so the idea ultimately had to be nixed.
The concept was to create a pop-up venue that is a homage to Café 80’s, as seen in the cult classic movie Back To The Future Part 2. From the CRT video wall, the ‘futuristic’ Americana diner decor, right down to the ‘Wild Gunman’ arcade game along the wall (sans Elijah Wood) we wanted to recreate the whole damn thing.
Empty almost a year at the time of pitching, the Newtown Post Office, in the suburb of Newtown, Sydney, Australia, stood out as the perfect location to house our little project. Corner location – check. Corner entry – check. Huge windows facing the street – check. Clock tower – check? Yes, that’s right. It even had its own clock tower. Perfect for a “Save The Clock Tower” flyer campaign leading up to the opening.
An integral part of the popup was to stock “Pepsi Perfect”, which would have meant convincing Pepsi to produce a run of inspired futuristic bottles. It turned out that they needed little convincing would have been required, as the soda company has forged ahead and done it themselves.
With the link to the Film Festival, we had also proposed having screenings of “Back To The Future Part II” at the Dendy Cinema Newtown, only a hundred metres away. As part of the Film Festival’s official mobile app, we had also pitched an Augmented Reality photo app which recreated the Jaws 19 hologram crashing out of the Dendy facade. The user could then snap a photo with a friend being attacked by Jaws, and post to social media.
So that was it. Will we ever get another chance to recreate one of our most favoured childhood memories? Probably not. It’s all in the past now – just like all three of those Back To The Future movies...