Spielberg recalled receiving "stacks" of congratulatory telegrams upon "E.T.'s" premiere during the Cannes Film Festival in June 1982, but the most treasured one came from Francois Truffaut, who said, "You belong here more than me."
At a White House screening, Spielberg sat next to President Reagan and noted that "the president's face became very childlike. His mouth was open, his eyes were wide, and I suddenly saw a 10-year-old boy."
Thomas added that he is "pleasantly surprised" by the film's resonating success.
"I never really thought when we were filming that it would ever be a success. It literally took until about 10 years ago for me to realize, 'Wow! This "E.T." thing isn't going away.' "