Today we all know E.T. as a wrinkly, home-phoning scamp who’s one part cute, one part creepy and 10-parts profitable, but originally the little guy was more straight-up creepy. E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial began life as a horror movie sequel to Close Encounters of the Third Kind called Night Skies. The movie would have involved a family being menaced by a band of evil aliens, and was going to be directed by Tobe Hooper, the creator of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Ah, what could have been.
Eventually Night Skies would morph into a family-friendly adventure, but before that happened special effects master Rick Baker created some malevolent E.T.-esque aliens that look like they’d sooner eat your face than a bowl of Reese’s Pieces. These Night Skies aliens had never been seen until recently when Rick Baker began sharing pictures of them on Twitter. You can check them out below…
I’m not sure if this “cute” version is more or less creepy than the rest.
Interestingly Rick Baker didn’t end up working on E.T. itself and in fact he and Spielberg ended up having a falling out over the $700,000 Baker spent on Night Skies prototypes that never ended up being used. That said, while Baker technically didn’t create E.T., it’s pretty clear his Night Skies designs had a major influence on the little bugger.