Being both a writer and producer, I’ve been blessed to be part of the casting process of a movie – I can’t even begin to tell you how difficult it is, especially for an indie film. But it doesn’t take expert eyes to recognize talent like this.
Released by Universal Pictures in Sweden, below is footage of Henry Thomas auditioning for the role of Elliot in Steven Spielberg’s E.T..
You can hear Spielberg in the background giving Thomas direction, explaining to him what his character’s mindset would be.
Then, someone else off-screen lazily reads off lines from the screenplay that sound as if they’re a work in progress (or the delivery is just awful). Being that this is who young Thomas had to react to makes the video all the more magical.
Behold Thomas’ conviction followed by an emotional explosion. It’s powerful stuff from such a young actor. I can only imagine what he used to get motivated – possibly he was thinking about his dog dying or maybe he wanted the job so bad that he thought about being rejected by one Steven Spielberg? Whatever the case may be, prepare to be transported to planet awesome and enjoy the end when Spielberg quickly exclaims, “You got the job!”
Note: I’m not an extra features kinda guy, so I couldn’t tell you if the following footage is on any of the domestic releases.