Melissa Mathison, who was nominated for an Oscar for her screenplay of Steven Spielberg's E.T.: The Extra Terrestrial, has died at the age of 65, Variety reports. According to her brother Dirk, she had been sick leading up to her death.
Mathison recently reunited with Spielberg to work on the screenplay for his adaptation of Roald Dahl's whimsical children's novel The BFG, which hits theaters next year. "Melissa had a heart that shined with generosity and love and burned as bright as the heart she gave E.T.," Spielberg said in a statement.
Mathison was married to Harrison Ford from 1983 to 2004, and they have two children together, Malcolm and Georgia.
In an interview with the American Film Institute, Spielberg shared that he asked Mathison to pen E.T. after being a fan of her work on The Black Stallion, and it was Ford who helped to talk Mathison into taking the job. "She did a tremendously wonderful screenplay," he said.
Mathison also wrote the screenplays for The Indian in the Cupboard, a Twilight Zone movie and Martin Scorsese's Kundun.