Steven Spielberg: I was helpless when Drew Barrymore's childhood was taken away
The director Steven Spielberg has always been a father figure in the actress's life Drew Barrymore, but he had to turn her down when she asked him to be her "real dad" during the filming of their movie ET the Extra-Terrestrial (1982). The actress was only seven years old when she starred in this now legendary Spielberg film, writes "Variety".
In the new interview of the actress for "Valcher", she stated that Spielberg was "the only man in her life who was a father figure to her." Eventually, he agreed to be her best man.
On the other hand, Barrymore's real father, the actor John Drew Barrymore, was a violent alcoholic.
During the filming of "ET the Extra-Terrestrial", Spielberg did everything to preserve the magic of the main character in front of little Barrymore. In other words, she thought the cute alien was real, and the director wanted to keep it that way. After several weeks of filming, Barrymore pretended that several men were operating E.T. and asked them to leave the set.
"I didn't want to ruin her experience." Well, I just said to her, 'Okay, ET. is so special E.T. that he even has eight assistants. I'm the director, I only have one,'" said Spielberg.
Spielberg also kept cameramen close to him during non-filming periods, such as lunch breaks, so Barrymore could eat with E.T.
According to Walcher, Barrymore spent time with Spielberg on weekends, he gave her a cat named Gertie and took her to Disneyland.
At the same time, little Barrymore's private life was becoming more and more problematic due to her violent father. Later in life, Barrymore revealed that she started using marijuana at the age of ten and cocaine at the age of twelve. In the same period, she began to be treated for drug addiction.
When she was filming ET the Extra-Terrestrial at the age of seven, Barrymore arrived on set with lipstick on her lips, and Spielberg told her to wipe it off.
"She stayed up late, went places she only had to hear about (from adults) and lived as an adult at a very tender age, something that robbed her of her childhood. However, I felt very helpless because I was not her father. I could only be her advisor," Spielberg told "Walchr".