An underlying narrative that provides the background or historical context for a novel, screenplay, or other story. Also: back-story, back story.
Example Citation:
Further blurring the distinction between reality and fiction, Mynick and Sanchez followed the movie's post-production by designing an elaborate Internet site that offers supplementary backstory information such as video clips of outtakes, a history of the Blair Witch and what purports to be visual evidence of the student film-makers' fate.
— Michael Dwyer, "Mock Horror," The Irish Times, August 14, 1999
Earliest Citation:
Christopher Reeve, who plays the miracle man from planet Krypton, portrays a homosexual in his new movie, ''Deathtrap.'' In one love scene he kisses Michael Caine smack on the mouth. Yech!
What kind of response will this wrest from millions of adoring fans of The Man of Steel? Will they continue to exclaim, ''It's a bird! It's a plane! It's Superman!'' Or will they simply make sly remarks about Superman's flights.
Not the least worried about such speculation is actor Reeve who says the vault from Superman to homosexual is no quantum leap. It is, he avers, a mere hop, skip and a jump.
''You have to know the back story of my career before you can pass judgment on the roles I play,'' said the erudite New Yorker.
— Vernon Scot, "Scott's World: Superman Kisses A Guy!," United Press International, April 3, 1982
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New words. 2013.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • backstory — c.1990, from background story …   Etymology dictionary

  • backstory — UK [ˈbækstɔːrɪ] / US [ˈbækˌstɔrɪ] noun [countable] Word forms backstory : singular backstory plural backstories 1) mainly journalism an account of the events leading up to what is being written about now 2) a set of events invented for a book,… …   English dictionary

  • backstory — noun Date: 1984 a story that tells what led up to the main story or plot (as of a film) …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • backstory — back·sto·ry (băkʹstôr ē, stōr ē) n. 1. The experiences of a character or the circumstances of an event that occur before the action or narrative of a literary, cinematic, or dramatic work: At rehearsal, the actors developed backstories for their… …   Universalium

  • backstory — noun a) The supposed previous life and experiences of a fictional character in a dramatic work. b) A prequel …   Wiktionary

  • backstory — n. events that took place in the life of a character before commencement of a fictional story; background (used metaphorically) …   English contemporary dictionary

  • backstory — noun (plural backstories) a history or background created for a fictional character in a film or television programme …   English new terms dictionary

  • backstory — back•sto•ry [[t]ˈbækˌstɔr i, ˌstoʊr i[/t]] n. pl. ries. cvb the background of a real or fictional story or situation; prior circumstances or events • Etymology: 1980–85 …   From formal English to slang

  • backstory — /ˈbækstɔri/ (say bakstawree) noun the background to a film, play, or computer game, which gives insight into the plot or characterisation …   Australian English dictionary

  • backstory — …   Useful english dictionary

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