Spielberg regrets changing guns to walkie-talkies in E.T.

More than 20 years after digitally altering his beloved classic, Steven Spielberg says he made mistakes with the E.T. anniversary.

Spielberg e.t.

Steven Spielberg has said the one movie of all of his he can rewatch the most is 1982’s E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, which he calls “pretty perfect” (an understatement, if we do say so). But surely he’s referring to the 1982 release and not the 2002 version since the iconic director has expressed regret over an infamous change made through digital alterations…you know the one.

Speaking at the Time 100 Summit, Spielberg admitted that changing the guns to walkie-talkies in E.T. for the scene where the federal agents try to stop Elliott and company was a major goof on his part. “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.” So we’re cool leaving in the part where Elliott gets hammered via E.T. slugging Coors then, right?

Spielberg added that making such changes to E.T. was a form of self-censorship, something an artist should never commit. “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.” See, this is what happens when you hang around with bad influences like George Lucas!

Swapping firearms for walkies wasn’t the only change Steven Spielberg made to E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial for its anniversary release–and it’s not even the one that bothered Henry Thomas the most. “I wasn’t as concerned about the guns and walkie-talkies, but I didn’t like the comedic E.T. expressions that seemed out of place…It didn’t marry up with the other performance, it’s like two different actors.”

Steven Spielberg has spoken of the E.T. changes before and has stuck with his guns (yes, guns) that the original release is the one fans should watch.

How did you feel about the changes Steven Spielberg made to E.T.? Were they right for the time or should he have never touched the movie? Give us your take below!

Source: Variety

About the Author

2019 Articles Published

Mathew is an East Coast-based writer and film aficionado who has been working with JoBlo.com periodically since 2006. When he’s not writing, you can find him on Letterboxd or at a local brewery. If he had the time, he would host the most exhaustive The Wonder Years rewatch podcast in the universe.