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‘E.T.’ celebrates its 40th anniversary with all new 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray and digital release

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Universal Pictures/Getty Images

Steven Spielberg‘s Oscar-winning classic E.T.: The Extra Terrestrial had its 40th birthday in June, and in celebration, Universal has just released an all-new 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray and digital version of the film.

E.T. The 40th Anniversary Edition includes 45 minutes of all-new bonus features, including a retrospective of the film and its legacy, as well as a featurette with Spielberg reflecting on his career and the making of the film.

The new version also includes deleted scenes, a cast and filmmaker reunion, and a discussion with John Williams about the iconic, Academy Award-winning score from the film.

“I think it’s great because, you know … it has a special place in a lot of people’s hearts,” Henry Thomas, who played Elliot in the film, tells ABC Audio.

He continues, “[E.T. was] a lot of people’s first experience of seeing a film in the theater. And so it’s special and they’re showing it to their kids. And, you know, it’s kind of become our generation’s Wizard of Oz.”

The movie is so beloved that Thomas’ audition tape recently resurfaced and went viral online. The improvised scene saw the child actor conjuring real tears and famously ends with Spielberg, off camera, saying, “OK, kid: You got the job.”

About that, Thomas laughs, “I think it’s kind of funny, actually, because, you know, when I see the audition tape, I just see, like, myself being really scared and desperate to get a job. You know … I don’t see any acting genius there.”

Equally unimpressed were Thomas’ three kids. “I expected them to be amazed that I was in this movie. But they immediately … said, ‘Oh, that’s when you were a kid. This was the famous movie you did when you were a kid, Dad.'”  

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