He’s one of the most iconic aliens in cinema history, but Steven Spielberg’s iconic E.T. The Extraterrestrial could’ve looked very different.
Empire has released some recently unearthed concept art created by Ed Verreaux — who worked on three Indiana Jones movies, Poltergeist and Empire Of The Sun — showing several different early designs for what would eventually become E.T.
Some of them look similar to what we eventually got on the big screen — while several are downright unsettling. Seriously, a few of those look like they’re a story beat away from hollowing out your skull and devouring your brains. Spielberg wanted E.T. to be both innocent and wise, and these are the designs that eventually led to the alien we know and love.
You can see how the design concept touches on the classic aliens "greys" look we're familiar with from just about everywhere, then evolves through some Close Encounters of the Third Kind-esque faces before finally hitting it just right. Check out the sketches below, and the final design from the film above, and let us know what you think.