Roger Ebert called it “…one of those movies that brush away our cautions and win our hearts”. Derek Malcolm referred to it as “…a superlative piece of popular cinema”. It won four Academy Awards, took home Best Picture at the 1983 Golden Globes, and bypassed Star Wars to become the highest-grossing film of all time — until it was dethroned by Jurassic Park some 10 years later.
In the four decades since its initial release, Steven Spielberg’s E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial has continued to delight generations of fans with its heartwarming tale of friendship, loss, and learning to grow up. Most consider the movie to be essential viewing, while many a respected critic regard it as one of the greatest films of all time. It’s a cultural phenomenon. A colossus within the field of popular culture whose majesty is unmatched even all these years later.
In celebration of the film’s 40th anniversary, NECA announced the E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial 40th Anniversary Collection. Consisting of five brand-new action figures first revealed this past summer at San Diego Comic-Con, the assortment offers fans the chance to bring both the magic and excitement of the beloved classic into their world as never before!
Let’s take a look at what’s in store, shall we?
First up, we have the aptly named Ultimate E.T. figure. Crafted in 7-inch scale and standing about 4.5-inches tall, the figure is fully posable and includes multiple accessories for display or play. These include a candy bag, blanket, Speak & Spell and a potted plant. Also included will be interchangeable necks and swappable hands for a few additional display options.
Next up, we have the Ultimate Dress Up E.T. figure. Based on the scene where Elliott’s little sister, Gertie, spends an afternoon of fun with the lovable little alien, this uniquely designed piece is crafted in 7-inch scale and comes in at around 4.5-inches tall. Ultimate Dress Up E.T. wears the now iconic dress and wig ensemble from his playtime session and includes a purse and potted plant. Also included will be interchangeable hands, swappable necks and different heads – both with and without the wig.
Deluxe Ultimate E.T. will take the fun and excitement of this collection to a whole new level by coming to fans with a light-up LED chest just like in the movie. Included with this figure will be the large communicator device that E.T. uses to Phone Home, interchangeable necks, swappable hands and a potted plant accessory. Deluxe Ultimate E.T. is crafted in 7-inch scale, stands about 4.5-inches tall and includes multiple points of articulation for numerous posing options. And not to worry, the button cell batteries used to activate his special light-up feature are included!
The Ultimate Telepathic E.T. figure is defiantly my favourite offering from this new anniversary collection! Like the other figures mentioned above, he is sculpted in 7-inch scale and stands approximately 4.5-inches tall. Wearing the plaid blue shirt from his scenes spent lounging around the house, this version of the character is fully posable and includes a Speak & Spell, telephone and TV remote accessory. Interchangeable necks and hands will also be included. Now, why I say that this version happens to be my favourite is that it represents one of the funniest scenes in the movie – where E.T. gets a case of the munchies and decides to go poking around the fridge. Here, he helps himself to some not-so-appetizing potato salad before cracking open a few cans of beer. Of course, having never ingested alcohol before, poor E.T. soon finds himself so tipsy that he’s not only bumping into walls and burping up a storm, but eventually ends up flat on his face in the middle of the kitchen floor! Like I said, this is easily my most favourite scene in the movie, as I still can’t help but laugh uncontrollably at the absolute absurdity of it all. I only wish that this figure also included a few beer cans akin to what NECA did with their Retro Style Quint figure last year. But, I digress. This is still a fantastic-looking figure, and I’ve no doubt many a collector out there is excited to add him to their collection.
Along with the rest of the line, of course!
Rounding out this special anniversary assortment is the Elliott & E.T. On Bicycle action figure. Crafted in 7-inch scale and measuring 5-inches long, the figure calls to mind classic toys of the past thanks to its vintage pull-back-and-go action! It also includes a freestanding movie backdrop. With this figure, not only can fans and collectors send Elliott and E.T. speeding freely around the house, but they can even re-create the famous flying bike scene from the movie by attaching the figure to the backdrop!
An impressive collection to be sure, and one that this writer feels is certainly worthy of the beloved film’s timeless legacy! In addition to everything mentioned above, each of the figures features incredible life-like detail and comes in collector-friendly 40th-anniversary window box packaging with an opening front flap. The regular E.T. anniversary figures are priced between $32.99 USD and $37.99 USD. At the same time, the larger bicycle set and Deluxe Ultimate E.T. figure will set you back between $42.99 USD and $46.99 USD depending on the retailer.
Look for the E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial 40th Anniversary Collection in stores and online now.