Spielberg’s ET regret….

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There’s a huge range of Spielberg’s films to love but one of his most popular and one that is deeply personal to the director is ET and in recent masterclass at the Time 100 Summit  audiences learnt about Spielberg’s ET regret.

It’s all due to a scene where a number of officers with firearms chase the kids,  something that the director decided to change for the 20th anniversary re-release. In that version he digitally erased the firearms replacing them with radios instead. Its a change he says he should never have made

Said the director, ‘That was a mistake. I never should have done that. ‘E.T.’ is a product of its era. No film should be revised based on the lenses we now are, either voluntarily or being forced to peer through. ‘E.T.’ was a film in which I was sensitive to the fact that the federal agents were approaching kids with firearms exposed, and I thought I would change the guns into walkie-talkies… Years went by, and I changed my own views. I should have never messed with the archives of my own work, and I don’t recommend anyone do that. All our movies are a kind of a signpost of where we were when we made them, what the world was like, and what the world was receiving when we got those stories out there. So I really regret having that out there.”

On its release in 1982 the film rocketed to the biggest box office earner ever making $792m off a $10m budget and with a deal that the director had struck saw him earn a lot off the films success. Current estimates have Spielberg worth over $4b and yet that is eclipsed by his close friend and fellow film maker George Lucas whose estimated worth is over $5.1b

related feature: What are Spielberg’s top earning films adjusted for inflation?

related feature: Warwick Davis talks about George Lucas at the Willow TV series premiere

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