The Spielberg Classics Come Back to Theaters

Elliot and E.T. on a bike.

E.T. flies back to theaters this summer.
Image: Universal Pictures

They’re gonna need a bigger screen. Two of Steven Spielberg’s most iconic films, 1975’s Jaws and 1982’s E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, are being given special IMAX releases later this year, with Jaws even getting a 3D version as well.

E.T. will phone home first on August 12, tied to the film’s 40th anniversary. It’ll be followed on September 2 by Jaws, in both IMAX and RealD 3D. No word yet on ticket availability but check with local theaters that have IMAX or RealD screens. Also, the Jaws IMAX screenings are 2D. The 3D ones are not in IMAX.

“Universal is honored to have been a part of so many extraordinary, unforgettable Steven Spielberg films over the past 47 years, including Jaws in 1975, E.T. in 1982, and Jurassic Park in 1993,” Jim Orr, president of domestic theatrical distribution for Universal Pictures, said in a press release. “No filmmaker, it’s fair to say, has had a greater or more enduring impact on American cinema or has created more indelible cinematic memories for tens of billions of people worldwide. We couldn’t think of a more perfect way to celebrate the anniversary of E.T. and the first Universal-Spielberg summer blockbuster, Jaws, than to allow audiences to experience these films in a way they’ve never been able to before.”

A source tells io9 that Spielberg and Amblin were involved and approved the conversions, though it’s unclear what specifically will be different or changed. Also, E.T. is the original theatrical version. No extra footage or CGI walkie-talkies here. And while that’s exciting, I’m particularly curious to see what a Steven Spielberg-approved 3D conversion of Jaws looks like. IMAX I kind of get. It’s just bigger and sounds better. But Jaws? In 3D? That’s going to be interesting.

The news comes on the eve of another Spielberg-approved project, Jurassic World Dominion, which will have a new trailer for the IMAX release of E.T. in select theaters. It’s a good time to be a Steven Spielberg fan, especially if you like the older films.


Want more io9 news? Check out when to expect the latest Marvel and Star Wars releases, what’s next for the DC Universe on film and TV, and everything you need to know about House of the Dragon and Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power.

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