Letters to E.T.


A couple of years ago I was at a garage sale, when I spotted the book “Letters to E.T.” It was just sitting there, nothing surrounding it, a beam of light shining down from the heavens to enhance E.T’s already shimmering halo on the cover. It cost a whopping 25 cents. I didn’t bargain or even look at it. I just dropped a quarter on the guy selling it, snatched it up and ran home to devour it.

The idea of writing letters to a movie characters, makes me so damn happy. It reminds me of when Homer Simpson is called out for writing letters to movies.

Dear Die Hard,
You rock. Especially the part where that dude is on the rooftop.
P.S. Do you know Mad Max?

None are quite that awesome but overall these earnestly written letters are great. Most of them are from children, who really want E.T. to come to their assorted parties, but a few adults make it into the mix. My favorite is this one by Mrs. Vera Binder and she is/was a national treasure.


I really hope she got the money for those contact lenses. The book also has some great PR photos and fan art. I threw a few of them into a gallery for your viewing pleasure. If you ever get the opportunity to pick this up, especially for 2 bits, you will not be disappointed. It will not only give you some insight into the E.T. mania that took us by storm in 1982, but also an interesting view of pre-internet fandom.


The Retroist

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9 thoughts on “Letters to E.T.

  1. metagirl says:

    Dear E.T.,

    Please beam me up for Christmas so that I don’t have to spend it with my family. I would much rather eat Reese’s with you.


  2. I also have this book. Very charming and endearing. Some of the letters are so heartfelt its inspiring and heartbreaking that these kids want to believe in ET so bad. And then the letters from the parents who wrote to tell that ET helped their autistic kids, etc. Very sweet book.

  3. Z says:

    Wow, I love Cracked but they definitely just lifted the three letters that you have online in their article about this book

  4. When E.T. was rereleased back into theaters several years back, I was surprised by how little interest there was in that. I was SUPER excited as was the Cinemark movie theater in Moosic: they made their café look like the outside of the E.T. space ship. However, I was one of a very few people to actually see that film in that theater. Seems like the E.T. magic is gone :(

    This book reminds me how crazy people were for E.T. when it was first released. That movie will always have a special place in my heart and memories.

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