Director Steven Spielberg just sat down with popular film website Moviepilot and revealed the real life inspiration for the popular film “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial.”
It just might break your heart.
The director spoke of his difficult childhood, one that found him constantly bullied:
"It isn't something I enjoy admitting, but when I was seven, eight, nine years old, God forgive me, I was embarrassed because we were Orthodox Jews.
I was embarrassed by the outward perception of my parents' Jewish practices."
“In high school, I got smacked and kicked around. Two bloody noses. It was horrible.”
In 1960, after his parents divorced, young Spielberg created an imaginary friend in order to cope. This imaginary friend was, you guessed it, a compassionate alien.
Here's how he described the friend:
“A friend who could be the brother I never had and a father that I didn't feel I had anymore.”
He talked about just how much Elliott's story in the film mirrored his own:
"We would go from town to town. And it would just so happen I would find a best friend, and I would finally become an insider at school and at the moment of my greatest comfort and tranquility we'd move somewhere else.
And the older I got the harder it got. And E.T. reflects a lot of that. When Elliott finds E.T., he hangs on to E.T. and he announces in no uncertain terms, 'I'm keeping him,' and he means it."
Elliott eventually had to let E.T. go home, much like how Spielberg had to eventually let go of his imaginary friend and face adulthood.