Everyone remembers E.T. and his famous lines like “Be good” and “E.T. phone home.” But did you know that the voice of E.T. was provided by at least 18 different people? It’s true; the majority of his lines were provided by Pat Welsh, an elderly smoker. But additional sounds and lines were voiced by director Steven Spielberg, actress Debra Winger, and sound designer Ben Burtt’s sleeping wife when she had a cold. That’s just one of the extra-terrestrial facts featured in the latest episode of You Think You Know Movies!

E.T.’s concept was based on Steven Spielberg’s imaginary childhood friend, but his initial idea was to make a horror movie about aliens torturing a suburban family. When screenwriter Melissa Mathison got her hands on the material she ditched the horror element and wrote a coming-of-age story about the friendship between a boy and the alien. (Spielberg later replaced the aliens in his original idea with ghosts, which eventually became the movie Poltergeist.) E.T.’s favorite snack was supposed to be M&Ms, but the Mars company refused to let the candy appear in the film, fearing E.T. would scare little kids. The film next turned to Hershey, who gave Spielberg permission to feature Reese’s Pieces. Sales of the candy increased dramatically after E.T. became a blockbuster. So if Steven Spielberg ever asks you if he can use your product in his movie, just say yes.

You Think You Know Movies? is a ScreenCrush original series that dives deep into the cinematic worlds of your favorite movies and freeze frames a few tidbits you might not have known. We’ve already tackled Star Wars, The Avengers and Spider-Man, but this time we’re munching on some Reese’s Pieces as we learn some E.T. secrets. Watch more installments of ‘You Think You Know Movies?’ below and let us know in the comments what movies we should cover next!

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