Tuesday, 25 November 2014

How Spielberg found the right kid for E.T.

Casting Director Marci Liroff (Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, and Mean Girls) recounts the story of how Henry Thomas was cast as the lead in E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial.



1 comment:

Kathy Smart said...

The casting director recounts one of the most amazing and moving casting experiences she has ever been through.

Originally she had cast a different actor. She had got the kids to interact together to play a game. She then sat outside of the room watching them interact. In 3 minutes it became very clear nobody liked the actor they had thought might play the lead. He was bossy, he was not “our kid”.

In the meantime Steven Spielberg received a call from Jack Fisk, a director who had directed a film and had used a wonderful boy called Henry Thomas. They flew him in, he was exhausted, they sat him in the office to read the script, then they put him through an improv set up by Spielberg where he had to stand up to bullying. He used his fear and anxiety to push further into the role and had them all crying within a minute.

Watch this, it’s amazing.