Bedford woman finds 40-year-old marzipan model of E.T. saved by her film buff dad

The former cinema projectionist was a huge fan of the Steven Spielberg classic

By Ed Cullinane
Monday, 16th May 2022, 2:23 pm

A 40-year-old, uneaten marzipan model of sci-fi movie alien E.T. has been uncovered by the relatives of a film buff after he died.

Former cinema projectionist Jim Robson was a massive fan of Steven Spielberg's classic 1982 film E.T. - the Extra Terrestrial.

He kept but never ate the £1.75 marzipan treat that one of his daughters bought for him from a bakery when the film was first released four decades ago.

A forty-year-old, uneaten marzipan model of sci-fi movie alien E.T. has been uncovered by the relatives of a film buff after he died.

Now, a year after Jim's death, daughter Mary Duke – who lives in Bedford – has uncovered the little confectionary among items she has inherited from her father.

Mary, 48, says she keeps the edible model of E.T. on display at all times.

Jim, from St Albans, Herts, died aged 92 on April 2, 2021.

Mary's sister Sarah Hayman had bought him the edible model for Father's Day in 1982 from a Simmons bakery in St Albans for just £1.75.

Former cinema projectionist Jim Robson.

At the time the present was one of many that the bakery chain produced for different films and celebrations.

Jim could 'never bring himself to eat it' according to Mary, who says she never will either.

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Contained in its packaging for 40 years, the model now looks "sweaty" and discoloured, with its red centre having long faded.

Mary now lives in Bedford where she runs a small business called 'Learning Lions' - which helps young children with their literacy.

She said: "We used to get it out every now and again, we'd call it 'sweaty ET' because after a while the marzipan started to sweat.

"My dad used to love marzipan, so we used to give him marzipan gifts.

"He just could never bring himself to eat it though.

"It used to have red shapes in it like how in the film you can kind of see ET's heart - but it's faded a lot now.

"I'm not sure how it'd taste now, I just have it out all the time now though on my mantlepiece.

"I quite like it, but nobody has commented on it yet - but then there's quite a lot on display in our house.

"He used to be a projectionist, so he always loved movies. I remember us first going to see E.T. and he always used to cry when he watched the movie."

Simmons Bakery, which has been trading in Hertfordshire since 1838, said items like this were often purchased as gifts.

While saying that they didn't recommend anyone tried to eat it, the bakery was impressed by the item's longevity.

"We are pleased to think that this product may have brought someone happiness," said a spokeswoman.

"We doubt the model is worth anything, other than the pleasure it may have brought to its owner.

"We wonder if it will last another 40 years."