Down 66,364 this week

The Making of 'E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial' (1996)

Video  |   |  Documentary
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 5.8/10 from 105 users  
Reviews: 1 user

A behind-the-scenes documentary about the making of Steven Spielberg's 1982 film "E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial.'


0Check in

The 25 Most Immersive Worlds in Cinema

Highly immersive cinematic worlds can carry a movie, and we've rounded up the best of the best.

See the full list

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 3932 titles
created 21 Dec 2011
a list of 10000 titles
created 09 Mar 2013
a list of 7079 titles
created 01 Apr 2013
a list of 111 titles
created 11 months ago

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: The Making of 'E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial' (Video 1996)

The Making of 'E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial' (Video 1996) on IMDb 5.8/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of The Making of 'E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial'.


Cast overview, first billed only:
Ed Verreaux ...
Allen Daviau ...
Ralph McQuarrie ...


Comprehensive, non-narrated made-for-LaserDisc documentary about the making of the 1982 blockbuster classic. The story is told through interviews with director Steven Spielberg, co-producer Kathleen Kennedy, sound designer Ben Burtt, composer John Williams, and other key cast and crew members. It also includes rare, behind-the-scenes footage taken at the time of the original production, and deleted scenes not seen in the final cut (including the legendary "Principal Scene" with Harrison Ford). Written by hips <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis







Also Known As:

E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial - A Look Back  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (2002) (re-edited)


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?

Crazy Credits

During the end credits there is even more behind the scenes footage from John Toll including Henry Thomas, E.T. dream, the Halloween group foto, 'Steven Spielberg' talking about crabs and Thomas fooling around while filming E.T.'s death scene. See more »


References Return of the Secaucus Seven (1979) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

The making of a look back
28 February 2005 | by (Rijswijk, ZH, Netherlands) – See all my reviews

This retrospective features a great amount of behind the scenes footage shot by John Toll, including the scary sight of Steven Spielberg dressed as a bag lady on Halloween. It's mainly shots of the children being forced to go to school between takes and a young beardless Spiel showing off his enormous collection of baseball hats (and occasionally a stetson). If you collected the bubblegum cards way back when and wondered who this strange cowboy with glasses was, this documentary explains it all. Back in the present (actually the mid nineties) A long haired Spielberg explains that his most personal film is not so much about that 'vegetable from Alpha Centauri' but more about 'the rescue of sadness' he felt in need off during his own childhood, after his parents' divorce.

Kathleen Kennedy reveals it was Close Encounters that made her want to go into producing, while Spiel was looking for a way to turn his childhood frustrations into a 'sequel' to Close. The first draft by John Sayles (then called 'Night Skies') was deemed to violent, so Steven dictated his own version to Melissa Mathison on the set of Raiders. The former Mrs. Ford recollects working things out with the kids and put up little cards with the days work to make things easier for all of them (including Stevie).

Robert Macnaughton still looks normal in this documentary, but Drew Barrymore was caught in her Goth period. Meanwhile deadpan Henry Thomas complains about everything from instant stardom to the anatomical term 'Penis Breath' and most notably about having to kiss Erika Eleniak (who was not invited to participate). Dee Wallace (no Stone) turns out to be the most childlike of them all, even going as far (in 'The Reunion' on disc two) to claim she knows exactly how Drew felt as a 6 year old then, today (huh?).

Technical talk is restricted to one anecdote per person: Ben Burtt explains the difference between Debra Wingers temp track (no examples seem to have been found) and Pat Welsh's eventual E.T. voice. Then we get Denis Muren and Allan Darau to speak about finding the perfect shot of the moon and there is some confusion as to why they decided to bring the hospital set to the house. Finally Ralph McQuarrie shares a few thought on the spaceship design and we see some sketches I'm pretty sure ended up in a Star Wars art book later on.

All of them keep insisting that E.T. was not a special effect laden film, despite having to figure out which version of the Extra Terrestrial to use for each scene (the mechanical one, the suit or the puppet). The fact that this really is a very small, personal film, stopped it from gaining the kind of following as Star Wars or Lord of the Rings has and so the 2002 re-release failed to reach the same broad audience as before. Unless they had children of their own by then, the original fans simply did not want to go back to a 20 year old movie about a bunch of kids.

8 out of 10

P.S. I thought the sight of Spielberg in drag was scary, but the 'Space Exploration' feature on the DVD where somebody pretends to be E.T. talking about our solar system takes the cake!

0 of 0 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Anybody own this? bibble-5

Contribute to This Page