Every time I revisit Jaws, I’m amazed at how well the effects hold up. Despite now being 40+ years old, the animatronic shark is still completely believable, to the point that I find myself often forgetting it’s not actually a real shark. If you’ve been worried that Steven Spielberg will eventually go back and digitally touch the film up, worry no more.
Speaking with Screen Rant while promoting his Ready Player One, Spielberg revealed that he learned a valuable lesson from his restoration of E.T. years back.
“When E.T. was re-released, I actually digitized 5 shots where E.T. went from being a puppet to a digital puppet and I also replaced the gun when the F.B.I. runs up on the van, now they walkie talkies,” Spielberg recalled, talking about the 2002 re-release. “So there’s a really bad version of E.T. where I took my cue from Star Wars and all of the digital enhancements of A New Hope that George put in, and I went ahead, because the marketing at Universal thought we need something to get an audience back and see the movie so I did a few touch up in the film; in those days, social media wasn’t as profound as it is today but what was just beginning, you know, erupted a loud, negative voice about how could you ruin our favorite childhood film by taking the guns away and putting walkie-talkies in their hands among other things.”
Spielberg continued, “So I learned a big lesson and that’s the last time I decided to ever mess with the past. What’s done is done… I’ll never go back.”