E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial is a 1982 film directed by Steven Spielberg who co-produced the film with Kathleen Kennedy. The screenplay was written by Melissa Mathison. E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial stars Henry Thomas, Dee Wallace, Robert MacNaughton, Drew Barrymore, Peter Coyote and Pat Welsh.
The storyline follows Elliott, a lonely boy who befriends an extraterrestrial, dubbed E.T., who is stranded on Earth. Elliott and his siblings help E.T. return to his home planet while attempting to keep him hidden from their mother and the government.
The concept for E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial was based on an imaginary alien friend Steven Spielberg created after his parents’ divorce in 1960. He said that the imaginary alien was “a friend who could be the brother I never had and a father that I didn’t feel I had anymore”.
Principle photography was completed under the cover name A Boy’s Life to prevent anyone discovering and plagiarising the plot. Such was the secrecy that the actors had to read the script behind closed doors, and everyone on set had to wear an ID card. Filming began in a high school in Culver City and between locations at Northridge and Tujunga. Culver City’s Laird International Studios were used for the interiors of Elliott’s home. The exterior Halloween scene and the “flying bicycle” chase scenes were filmed in Porter Ranch.
E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial was shot in roughly chronological order to achieve convincingly emotional performances from the cast. In the scene where Michael first encounters E.T., his appearance caused MacNaughton to jump back and knock down the shelves behind him. The chronological shoot gave the young actors an emotional experience as they bonded with E.T., making the quarantine sequences more moving.
When E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial was released it positive reviews from the critics. On Rotten Tomatoes it holds a 98% rating with the consensus “Playing as both an exciting sci-fi adventure and a remarkable portrait of childhood, Steven Spielberg’s touching tale of a homesick alien remains a piece of movie magic for young and old”.
Roger Ebert gave the film four stars and wrote, “This is not simply a good movie. It is one of those movies that brush away our cautions and win our hearts.” He later added it to his Great Movies list, structuring the essay as a letter to his grandchildren about the first time they watched it.
E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial was nominated for 84 awards in total and won 51 including 4 Academy Awards, 2 Golden Globes and 1 BAFTA. In July 1982, during the film’s first theatrical run, Steven Spielberg and Melissa Mathison wrote a treatment for a sequel to be titled E.T. II: Nocturnal Fears. It would have shown Elliott and his friends getting kidnapped by evil aliens and follow their attempts to contact E.T. for help. Spielberg decided against pursuing it, feeling it “would do nothing but rob the original of its virginity”.
E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial
Year of Film
Henry Thomas, Dee Wallace, Robert MacNaughton, Drew Barrymore, Peter Coyote, Pat Welsh
Origin of Film
Genre(s) of Film
Family | Sci-Fi
Budget: $10,500,000 (Estimated)
Opening Weekend: $11,835,389 (USA)
Gross: $792,910,554 (Worldwide)
Type of Poster
Style of Poster
Origin of Poster
Year of Poster
40″ x 30″
NSS # / Printer Markings
Printed in England by W.E. Berry Ltd Bradford
He is afraid. He is totally alone. He is 3 million light years from home.
If you liked the website, found it useful and would like to help with its continued ad-free development, you can make a donation via PayPal. Small or large, it doesn’t matter, every little helps! We thank you for your continued support.