Veteran actor Harrison Ford and famous filmmaker Steven Spielberg are considered an iconic duo in the industry, having created a great working relationship over the years as they worked on projects such as the Indiana Jones films, each of which helped to cement their legacies.

Harrison Ford recently returned in the latest edition of Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny, and fans jumped at the chance to revisit the Steven Spielberg-directed saga. Fans noted that such films continue to occupy a special place in their hearts and memories, which is why they enjoy revisiting them. The critics and the audience have always praised and applauded the critics and the audience for their work, but the filmmaker has something to thank Ford for. Let’s find out.

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Steven Spielberg and Harrison Ford
Steven Spielberg and Harrison Ford

How did Harrison Ford contribute to Steven Spielberg’s classic E.T.?

During his appearance at the 2022 TCM Classic Film Festival, Steven Spielberg looked back on his 1982 classic movie E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, which was a huge success at the time, and restored the Imax version of the movie at the TCL Chinese Theatre.

The filmmaker recalled that at the time he needed a writer to write the script for him and for that, he didn’t have to look too far because actor Harrison Ford had arrived on the sets of Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark at the time with his then-girlfriend  Melissa Mathison, who was a screenwriter.

Steven Spielberg and Harrison Ford
Steven Spielberg credits Harrison Ford for the making of E.T.

When Spielberg approached Mathison with his idea about E.T., she turned him down, after which the filmmaker spoke to Ford, who then told him that he would speak to his girlfriend. Spielberg said, “I went to Harrison and said, ‘Your girlfriend turned me down. She doesn’t want to write my next movie.’ He said, ‘Well, let me talk to her.’” After Ford spoke to Mathison, she returned to the filmmaker, who then explained the story once again and the screenwriter became emotional and decided to be dedicated to the story.

Read this: Harrison Ford Breathes Sigh of Relief as Indiana Jones Finally Turns a $2M Profit after Weeks of Box Office Struggle

Harrison Ford’s cameo never made it to the final cut of Steven Spielberg’s movie

It is known that Harrison Ford, who helped the filmmaker have a screenwriter for his movie, filmed a cameo for the movie which never made it to the final cut of the movie during post-production.

Steven Spielberg and Harrison Ford
Steven Spielberg and Harrison Ford

According to reports, the filmmaker felt that Ford’s cameo might reshape the movie or take away the primary focus from the plot that needed the focus. They also assumed that Ford’s presence in the movie could turn out to be a distraction as the scene he was in it felt forced and did not match the vibe of the movie, so Spielberg decided to cut it through.

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Steven Spielberg credits Melissa Mathison for E.T.’s memorable aspects

Even though Mathison passed away in 2015 after battling cancer, the filmmaker and the screenwriter collaborated once again for The BFG, which came out in 2016. In E.T., Spielberg did not miss out on giving Mathison the credits she deserved, as several iconic moments from the movie are dedicated to the late screenwriter. Iconic and memorable moments include E.T.’s telekinesis and the quote E.T. phone home.

The filmmaker added that Melissa Mathison’s addition to writing E.T., was a memorable one as she brought so many unique things from her world into his. Speilberg said that after Mathison turned in her first draft of the movie, he went to young Kathleen Kenndey, who is one of the most successful producers in the industry.

Steven Spielberg's 'E.T'
A still from Steven Spielberg’s ‘E.T’

He explained, “I went over to her and said, ‘I think I just read the greatest first draft of my life — you have to read this.’ And she read it overnight and called me the next day and said, ‘I haven’t read a lot of scripts but this is the best script I’ve ever read’”.

E.T., starred Dee Wallace, Henry Thomas, Peter Coyote, Robert MacNaughton, and Drew Barrymore in the movie which narrates the story of Elliott, a boy who befriends an extraterrestrial who was left on Earth. Now, with the help of his friends, Elliott wants E.T. to find his way back to his home. The film’s concept was based on an imaginary friend that Spielberg created after his parent’s divorce.

Source: THR

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