Melissa Mathison, "E.T." Screenwriter, Dies at 65

Kimberly RipleyLife

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Melissa Mathison, best known for writing the screenplay E.T. the Extra Terrestrial, died on Wednesday at the age of 65. Mathison was the ex-wife of actor Harrison Ford.

Melinda Mathison Johnson confirmed her sister's passing of neuroendocrine cancer.

Melissa Mathison got her start in Hollywood as an assistant on films including The Godfather: Part II and Apocalypse Now. Her first feature script was The Black Stallion that made it onto the big screen in 1979.

Steven Spielberg, who directed E.T., issued a statement regarding Melissa Mathison's passing.

"Melissa had a heart that shined with generosity and love and burned as bright as the heart she gave E.T.," he said.

Married to Harrison Ford for 21 years before their divorce in 2004, Melissa Mathison shared two children with the actor.

Mathison's most recent work hasn't hit theaters yet. She worked with Steven Spielberg to bring Roald Dahl's The BFG to the silver screen. It comes out in 2016.

Melissa Mathison earned just one Oscar nomination in her lifetime--for E.T. She lost out to Ghandi.

The film world has lost a great talent in the passing of Melissa Mathison.

Kimberly Ripley
Kimberly Ripley is a freelance writer and published author from Portsmouth, New Hampshire. A wife, mom of five and 'Nana' to Lilly and Aiden, she loves cooking for her big family and watching HGTV in her spare time. Kim is guilty of starting way more home design projects than she can finish. Visit her at Twitter and Facebook.