A film about a boy that discovers an alien would go on to become a beloved classic was released into theaters across the United States on This Day in History.
Starring Henry Wallace and a young Drew Barrymore and directed by Steven Spielberg, E.T.: The Extra Terrestrial was released on June 11th, 1982. The film focuses on a young boy named Elliot who discovers an extraterrestrial, or E.T, who is stranded and wants to “phone home” to his people.
The film was a massive hit, making nearly 800 million dollars on a budget just over 10 million. It held the record of the highest-grossing film for several years, until another Spielberg picture, Jurassic Park, held the title.
For the 20th anniversary release of the film, Spielberg had the shotguns held by police officers digitally replaced by walkies-talkies. That move was widely criticized and the 30th anniversary release restored the original elements of the film.
While the movie is held in high regard, the Atari 2600 video game based on the film is considered one of the worst of all time, thanks to a rushed development cycle leading to glitches and confusing gameplay. Excess copies of that game were recently discovered buried at a New Mexico landfill.