As the 40th anniversary for E.T. approaches, Drew Barrymore said she plans to celebrate with the film’s director and her two daughters.

“I've actually been speaking with Steven Spielberg about it. He calls my girls who he held when they were babies, and he's known them throughout their lives. I do want to revel in this moment with them and include them and celebrate with Steven. He's a big father figure to me,” she said.

Barrymore was seven years old when she starred as Gertie in E.T., released on June 11th, 1982. Her two daughters, Frankie and Olive, are around that age now.

“So he's like, 'We're not missing this moment with your kids.’ I'm like, 'Okay. You're right. We can't. You're right.' This is very emotional and full circle. My kids are very close to the age that I was when E.T. came out. Frankie actually is at the age. She is 7, and she will just be turning 8, and Olive is 9. She'll be turning 10. This is where I'm at, and they love Steven.”

In a September 2021 episode of Dax Shepard‘s Armchair Expert podcast, Barrymore spoke about her relationship with Spielberg. “I got lucky. He single-handedly changed my life. He was also someone who I didn't realize until I was older was also very fatherly. He calls me his first kid. He was appalled by me wearing red lipstick or when I did Playboy. He sent me a note, 'Cover up!'” she said.