E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial / one sheet / bike over moon style / USA


E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial
Night Skies (USA working title)
Year of Film
Steven Spielberg
Henry Thomas, Dee Wallace, Robert MacNaughton, Drew Barrymore, Peter Coyote
Origin of Film
Genre(s) of Film
Sci-Fi | Adventure
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
Bike over moon
Origin of Poster
Year of Poster
B.D. Fox Independent (B.D. Fox & Friends, Inc.)
Size (inches)
26 12/16" x 40 7/16"
SS or DS

Unquestionably the most famous image from Spielberg’s 1982 classic, this poster was never actually used to promote the film in cinemas. The ‘fingers touching’ design is the final US one sheet and there is an advance known as the ‘spaceship in the clouds’ .

It is believed that Spielberg himself requested the poster to be designed by B.D. Fox Independent and that they were to be given out to cast, crew and other people associated with the film and his production company. There were two printings done with the only major difference being the dimensions. There are known reprints of this poster and the first time I picked one up I inadvertently bought a fake. I was able to return the poster and eventually found what I believe to be an original.

There are several guides online to recognising an original and I’ve tried to collect as many as I can here.

Mel at the now defunct Moviepostercollectors.com created an excellent guide to spotting a fake along with lots of detailed photographs.

In any event this poster (in any size) was never distributed to theaters.  The exact reason is unknown.  According to reports, it was created solely for the purpose of internal distribution to cast and crew members. (It was reported on MOPO that the posters were placed in the company lobby for employees to pick up.) Many of these posters have personal notes to/from executives and crew members.  It is known that Spielberg used the image as the logo for his company, so perhaps he did not want it released to the public.  I’ve also read speculation that Spielberg believed it gave away a major plot point from the movie.

From Dave at Cinemasterpieces.com (scroll down to find the poster):

The bike/moon one sheet is EXTREMELY RARE. Not intended for theatrical use, but rather a “Studio Issue” for cast and crew. All of the originals we have personally handled (a few came straight from former ILM employees) measure 26 3/4″ x 40 1/2 (or within 1/8″ of those numbers). There are reports from long time highly credible collectors of an authentic full size 27″ x 41″ version. This 27″ x 41″ version if authentic (we believe it is….although we haven’t seen it) is undoubtedly much rarer than the 26 3/4″ x 40 1/2″ version as few have ever come to light within the collecting community. There are also reprints/bootlegs of this poster with varying sizes…..so collectors beware!!

He also has a picture of a known fake for comparison.

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