Filmmaker Dillon Brown and Horror Nerd Productions are releasing a new fan film set in the Jurassic World franchise, and you can watch it now! New World: AJurassic World Fan Film centers around the dinosaur and human chaos that could follow the events of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. The logline is as follows:
“After the events at Lockwood Manor in Northern California, the genetically engineered dinosaurs captured from Isla Nublar are now roaming the world, many of them freely. Adjusting to this new life is difficult, as most places have issued strict guidelines on interacting with the animals, and many communities have even gone on lockdown as a safety precaution. Presented as a series of found-footage smartphone clips, and telling a wraparound story about a rogue videographer who sells dinosaur footage to news outlets, New World: A Jurassic World Fan Film presents a unique look at what our world has become.”
The film features original dinosaur effects as well as cameos and contributions from members of the Jurassic fan community. It was originally slated to release on April 16, 2021 but was finished early and is available now!
A note from director Dillon Brown:
“This entire film was shot using smart phones, and almost all of the effects you see were used by combining free apps on an iPhone. The entire film cost under $40 to make and was done as an experiment in pandemic filmmaking, allowing friends to get together virtually and create a film from a safe distance. Every VFX shot started out on a phone and utilizing free assets online, we were able to create our film. This was an exercise in bringing together the Jurassic Community and is in no way affiliated with the Jurassic World brand beyond a not-for-profit fan film.”
You can watch the film right now at the link below!
RICK CARTER’S ‘JURASSIC PARK’ was an epic project born out of the dire 2020 pandemic lockdown. Author Derrick Davis, the creator of JURASSIC TIME and writer at JURASSIC OUTPOST, had acquired many rare and previously unseen selections of concept art, storyboards, scripts, and other materials related to the original ‘Jurassic Park’. One of the most interesting items he acquired was a unique script that had many elements that would eventually be scrapped, but would also shape the final film, and beyond.
“I was brought onto ‘Jurassic Park’ about two years before we finally started shooting […] On most shows, the production designer is brought in and handed a script and asked to visualize it. Not so on this one. I was in on many early meetings with Steven where we would break down the scenes in the book and discuss which ones would work best for the film.”
In the beginning, Michael Crichton had provided severaldrafts of the screenplay for his novel before passing the pen to whoever would take a crack at future drafts. Director Steven Spielberg went on to film ‘HOOK’, as Jurassic Park’s production team continued to work.
“While Spielberg was doing ‘HOOK’, I would go to him with all these different ideas of how to make things work. It was a very managed production.”
“After our last script meetings, I began collecting together my notes. I realized that the only way for me to see how the ideas might actually play out in the story was for me to “collage” them into Michael’s latest script. Well, one thing led to another and I found myself going through the entire story.”
Out of all the scripts written for ‘Jurassic Park’, Carter’s version is perhaps the most interesting. It includes the early process of making John Hammond a more sympathetic character, the sick triceratops replacing the sick stegosaurus, and other changes from Crichton that will feel more familiar to how the film ended up. At the same time, the script introduces some interesting changes that would not carry over. This includes using the opening of the novel at the Costa Rican clinic, a condensed version of the river sequence, the removal of Donald Gennaro, Hammond’s idea of recruiting Grant and Sattler to work at the park, the discovery of a raptor den secretly nestled far beyond their pen, trees that are deforested by the giant dinosaurs, and the inclusion of lava fields. There’s even an umbrella designed to look like a “spitter” that is used as a distraction against a velociraptor; an idea similarly used in ‘Jurassic World’.
It’s not every day that a production designer writes a screenplay to get his ideas across in order to make the film a success. But Rick Carter was a special production designer. While his version of the script would not end up being used for the film, it wasn’t his intent anyway. He simply wanted the best way to further continue the production progress of ‘Jurassic Park’, and he felt altering the script was the best way to do it.
But what if it had been made? What would it have been like? Would it have felt just as grand, just engaging, and just as memorable? Or would it have had its own unique flavor that no one else could have concocted?
After nearly 30 years since it had been written, Derrick Davis had discovered the script and wanted to know the answers to all of those questions. He decided the best way to experience this early version of the film was to bring it to life. This led to him teaming up with another fan of the franchise, music composer Bernard A. Kyer. Derrick presented him with the idea of creating an audio drama experience from the script. He would do this by using concept art, storyboards, and other official artwork to illustrate it; many of which had never been seen before. Bernard took the script and adjusted it to flow in this format, while Derrick went to several fans of ‘Jurassic Park’ that could perform various roles, including himself as Tim Murphy and John Hammond.
Within almost a year’s time, Bernard assembled all the character performances while providing the script narration and additional voices, such as Dennis Nedry. The process included mixing a vast library of sound effects, many obtained from the film itself to instill further authenticity. Once that was completed, he composed a fantastic music score to bring it all to life; inspired not only by John Williams but other composers like Jerry Goldsmith, James Horner, and Danny Elfman.
After the audio was completed, Derrick assembled all the artwork he could find to match what was described, while enhancing it for high definition. Despite obtaining rare materials for years, including an entire binder of storyboards from ‘Dinosaur Supervisor’ Phil Tippett‘s collection, there was still much more that he needed. One of the people he had been in contact with over the years that had a great source for artwork and storyboards from the film was fellow collector and fan Astríd Vega of The Jurassic Park Collection and its YouTube channel. Derrick had shared and discussed the Rick Carter script with her long ago, and had even offered her various voice roles in an earlier-proposed version of the audio drama. Tragically, Astríd passed away in May of 2019… almost a year since Derrick had finally met her in-person at Universal Studios Hollywood’s Jurassic Park 25th Anniversary Event in May of 2018. Without her collection that she had shared, large portions of the video for this audio drama would not have been possible. The production is dedicated in her memory.
Despite amassing quite a collection of original and official materials, there was still a need for additional artwork. This task was completed by fellow fan and artist Felipe Humboldt. Felipe created several character sketches and scenic paintings based on descriptions in the script, which sometimes differed greatly from how they ended up in the final film. It should also be noted that character appearances changed even during the process of the original production itself, creating unavoidable inconsistencies throughout. Felipe also illustrated some additional moments from the script where no official artwork existed or could be found.
The end result is a one-of-a-kind experience that was an ultimate labor of love from everyone involved. While the debate can rage forever if this early version of the film would have been better than what we got, it is still fascinating to see it performed in such a dramatic way. It is also great to finally have an engaging way of presenting the art from those who worked on the film, such as Art Director John Bell, instead of having it locked away or forgotten forever.
Derrick Davis thanks everyone in the production for bringing his dream to life and realizing the imaginations of those who worked so hard to create our cherished, classic film: ‘JURASSIC PARK’.
Learn more about Bernard’s process of crafting the sound design and music score for the illustrated audio drama by checking out eachofhisfour in-depth articles from his site. Be sure to also hear Bernard’s album release of his music score for the project!
After much anticipation, The Genesis Archives is now live! ‘Jurassic Park: Operation Genesis’ lovers across the ‘Jurassic’ fandom will be thrilled to find a plethora of JPOG content on this new site! Lucca (Lucca2951 on Twitter) posted the reveal earlier this week on Twitter:
The Genesis Archives site is the complete database for everything related to the fan favorite game.
The Genesis Archives is a non-official / fan encyclopedia for the 2003 game “Jurassic Park: Operation Genesis”. The objective with this site is to hold most, if not all information ever given related to the game since the beginning of development to release. That includes the released content that comes in the multiple versions of the game, as well as cut content, development notes, and other type of stuff. We hope to bring these archives in a clean-looking way to help immortalize this wonderful game and its legacy, we plan on adding all the content possible over time to get this site as complete as it can be!
You can spend hours exploring the different areas of The Genesis Archives, which include:
Operation Genesis: a detailed introduction to ‘Jurassic Park: Operation Genesis’
Characters: the characters that you’ll meet during the game, including movie established characters and original characters created for the game, and trivia about them
Dig Sites: maps and tips that will help you with fossil hunting
Dinosaurs: lists and details about the various carnivores and herbivores you’ll encounter, and how to care and feed them
Research: types of research you’ll need to build your park
Exercises: details the various tutorials and scenarios that help you learn the game
Missions: should you choose to accept them… missions you can complete in addition to the Campaign and Exercises
Timeline: dates relating to the development of ‘Jurassic Park: Operation Genesis’
Soundtrack: listen to tracks from the game soundtrack
Videos: game intros and trailers
Cut Content: all the various elements that were cut from the game
It’s very exciting to see JPOG get some recognition and a site dedicated to the best ‘Jurassic’ game! Thanks to Lucca for sharing the site with the fandom!
What is your favorite about Operation Genesis? Let us know in the comments!
Something is coming, and we couldn’t be more thrilled to share it with you! Jack De La Mare and I have been hard at work on an exciting partnership with Jurassic World and Target to bring you Beyond the Gates – a new collectors focused web-series where we will be revealing all new Jurassic products, while digging into the DNA that brought the items to life.
Not too long ago Universal began discussions about this unique collaboration, and we hit the ground running to help design a show format that we hope excites you as much as it does us, from the fans for the fans. Our friends at Universal, Mattel, and Target shared our excitement and helped support us every step along the way as we began to play in this expansive Jurassic toybox, creating this little show.
We were given the keys, and a chance to not only to take the Jeep and drive – but to custom design it from the ground up. We worked with a handful of talented artists – including Lukas Vagt, Matt Henderson and Caleb Burnett – to support hatching the series, and evolve Beyond The Gates from concept to reality. This collaborative process has been a dream, and every party involved has been crucial in bringing this vision to life.
Today (February 17th) the first episode of Beyond the Gates made its debut exclusively on Target.com, with subsequent episodes to follow the third week of every month. Every episode feature your first look at all-new, upcoming Jurassic World reveals – and upon their reveal, they will become available for pre-order directly at Target.com.
Universal and ourselves not only want to use Beyond the Gates to share exclusive official content, but also to better inform the fans and collectors what is coming, when it will be available, while giving them a reliable way to secure those items for their collection before those opportunities go extinct. On top of that, we wanted to use this opportunity to let you hear directly from the masterminds who helped design the toys while taking a look at the development and evolution of the items via concept art, prototypes, and more!
The first episode of Beyond the Gates is here, and features a look at two long anticipated Amber Collection dinosaurs from the original Jurassic Park trilogy, accompanied by the expertise of Mattel’s own Chandra Hicks.
If you’ve seen episode 1, and are looking for our ‘After Show‘ — stay tuned! We’ve hit the ground running on this project, and that one is coming in hot. As for what to expect, we’ll take a longer look at the Amber Collection reveals, hear more from Mattel’s Chandra Hicks, while showing off more concept art and early looks at the development of these toys!
We wanted to thank Universal Pictures for being so accommodating and entrusting us to help create this fan-focused show. We have so much more to come, and can’t wait to show you more of what waits BEYOND THE GATES.
The sequel novel to Jurassic fan Ethan Pettus’ first novel ‘Primitive War‘ is available now! The novel is titled ‘Primitive War II – Animus Infernal’.
In case you missed the first novel in the series, ‘Primitive War’ is set at the height of the Vietnam War and tells the story of a search and rescue team known as Vulture Squad. The team is sent into an isolated jungle valley to uncover the fate of a missing platoon. As they hunt through the primordial depths of the valley, they discover ancient horrors that not only threaten to unravel their minds, but to end their lives as well.
The implosion of a particle accelerator in Cold War era Angola begins the story of ‘Primitive War II – Animus Infernal’. Two Angolan bounty hunters must lead an elite dinosaur-tracking team called Stalker Force to the heart of the implosion in order to contain a prehistoric outbreak. As the men devolve in their struggle to survive an inhospitable lost world, the landscape of the earth as we know it is changed forever by… the Primitive War.
This sequel novel presents an enticing new story for fans of dinosaurs, time travel, and historical fiction. The first ‘Primitive War’ novel was both thrilling and terrifying, combining ancient horrors with modern combat drama. ‘Primitive War – Animus Infernal’ takes those elements to the next level, and is an awesome new dinosaur story that Jurassic fans will love.
Also available now is the episodic short story anthology ‘Primitive War Dispatches – The Hunting of Stalker Force’, which serves as a bridge between the two novels, along with ‘The Primitive War Bestiary’, which is a field guide illustrated by Bruno Hernandez. The audiobook version of ‘Primitive War’, recorded by Wayne June, is also being released in January 2021!
In even more exciting future release news, a brand new graphic novel adaptation of ‘Primitive War’ is currently in the works! This will be an excellent way for fans to visualize the novel’s vicious carnivores and thrilling action sequences like never before. The adaptation’s stunning colors and frames are being brought to life by writer Ethan Pettus, illustrator and co-creator Babisu Kourtis, colorist Maja Opacic, and letterer Taylor Esposito. The five-issue first volume of the adaptation is currently being drafted simultaneously with a KickStarter campaign and conversations with publishers.
Thanks to the generosity of author Ethan Pettus, Jurassic Outpost is able to showcase exclusive images and pages from the upcoming graphic novel. Check them out below!
The people of Singapore will be getting a fun surprise this November as Universal brings a Jurassic World themed restaurant to ION Sky, a popular tourist destination in the capital city. Located 56 floors up in the ION Orchard shopping mall, the dino-centered pop-up will serve premium menu items amongst the backdrop of the Singapore city skyline.
The new diner will feature a variety of Jurassic themed menu offerings, including a Jurassic World Burger, Volcano Curry, and Nasi Lemak. Keep an eye out for some fancy dessert choices too, like Geologic Parfaits and Lava Cookies.
The restaurant also plans to offer more festive themed dishes as we approach the Christmas season. Limited edition merchandise will also be available for purchase, including LEGO sets, keychains, and Snap Squad figures.
The pop-up is a collaboration between Universal Brand Development, 1-Group, ION Orchard, and PARCO – a licensee of the Jurassic World Café. The café opens its doors on November 6, 2020 and will serve hungry customers until January 3, 2021.
It will be open daily from 11am to 10pm, and reservations are highly encouraged. Anybody feeling like taking a trip to Singapore? Gives us your best Jurassic themed food ideas in the comments below!
And while your mouth is watering at the photos above, be sure to also check out Jurassic Park: Chronicle, an Italian short film based on the Jurassic Park saga!
This short is a prequel to the first movie and “blends adventure with mystery, telling the story of Garrison Eriksen, a journalist who’s heard rumors about suspicious activities occurring on an island off the coast of Costa Rica. He arrives at Isla Nublar to investigate and soon regrets it.”
The animated short film is available to watch above, and you can find more information at the official website and on the team’s Facebook page! Let us know in the comments section down below what you think of Jurassic Park: Chronicle!
It was a digital landscape that sometimes we think time wishes it could forget. Before Facebook or Twitter, Instagram or Tumblr, even before Myspace. It was an age when the internet wasn’t quite in its infancy, but more of an awkward transitional phase, as everyday it seemed new sites, forums and chat rooms came and went.
Today the graveyards of Archive.org are littered with the remnants of this now bygone era and provide a fascinating insight into the Jurassic Park fandom. Full of forgotten fanfics, early rumors of a “Jurassic Park 4” and maybe if you’re lucky some old screencaps and fan art, there is one page in particular that stands out. A place many once heard of and few probably remember, it was only recently that it was rediscovered.
Almost lost forever and forgotten by most, Jurassic Park: England (or “JP:UK” as it was also known) was a website chronicling a labor of love undertaken by British fan Andy Simpson and his quest to create a patch of prehistoric paradise in his own garden. Seemingly inspired by “Jurassic Park: The Ride” and then then recent Jurassic Park III, you can guarantee no expense was spared.
With some reports estimating that Andy spent about £4,000, the attraction included a 20ft. river safari through primeval overgrowth, smoky banks and of course a 15ft. recreation of the infamous “King Kong gates” that loomed over guests in the movie. All of this ending in a home theater where guests could join its creator in a private screening of his favorite films. “I’ve seen Jurassic Park over 300 times!” Simpson told reporters back in 2001. “I watched the films over and over ’cause each time I’d notice new things to re-create.” he also commented.
The attraction itself was by no means easy to build. According to Andy, besides the two years and countless hours needed to construct the massive attraction, it was also required to meet certain standards from the local council in order to entertain guests. Luckily for him however, “Jurassic Park: England” came just short of the required dimensions for some serious urban planning. As, if that wasn’t enough to consider, Simpson had to reach out to Steven Speilberg and Universal themselves for their blessing to use the Jurassic Park name and iconography. With little in his favor and probably as much chance as the cast of Jurassic Park had escaping the jaws of a hungry t-rex, Universal and Speilberg’s company actually reached out to the teenage fan, providing him with everything he needed to properly represent what they created.
Unlike the fictional park, which was only previewed to six selected guests, “Jurassic Park: England” opened to 40 and was met with critical acclaim for such a humble attraction. People gasped with delight as they were towed through the torch lit river and amazed as they came face to face with simulated dangers waiting along the banks. Simpson went on to be featured in countless news outlets including radio, tv, magazines and newspapers. In addition his site showcasing the ride briefly went viral with thanks from an avid community of fans.
What happened to “JP:UK?” Well truth be told, nobody really knows. In a time before social media as we know it today, it was easy for it all to fall into obscurity. The last time anyone heard from Simpson was in 2008 when he last updated his webpage. Perhaps somewhere in a British suburb, in an overgrown garden adorned with plastic skulls are the ancient ruins of this once proud attraction. A real lost world, waiting to be rediscovered, to be explored and maybe even entertain guests once again.
It’s hard to think that anything this huge could be forgotten, but if it’s one thing dinosaurs like the ones in Jurassic Park have to teach us, it’s this: Even the biggest things can be lost to time and reclaimed by the Earth. That’s why it’s important that we make our mark and tell the world who we are. The dreamers, the innovators, the people who do the impossible, keep pushing forward, shine bright and leave your legacy.
This article was written with love and with cooperation from “Big Razzie” and “Jurassic Outpost”.
A new Kickstarter has launched for an upcoming dinosaur survival horror game known as Deathground. The game is described as a solo and co-op survival horror game that throws players into a desperate battle for survival against deadly AI dinosaurs.
The Jurassic Park franchise has unfortunately been a stranger to survival horror video games, with efforts in the past often being cancelled before completion. Jurassic Park: Survival was a cancelled Playstation 2 video game that was third person and similar to Tomb Raider in gameplay style. It was set on a mysterious third island and for its time appeared to be the horror survival game fans had wanted.
In more recent years, Universal Pictures had trademarked Jurassic World: Survivor, which was known to be an open world third or first person survival game taking place on Isla Nublar. It was being developed by Cryptic Studios but ceased development at some point in 2017.
This year, Universal Pictures trademarked Jurassic World: Aftermath, which we believe could be the same game, perhaps under a new developer. So far the game has not been officially discussed.
And that brings us to now. Five movies into the franchise and not a single, modern (we can’t forget Trespasser) survival adventure game. Nothing with a similar style to The Last of Us, or Alien: Isolation, which are arguably two of the most defining in that genre.
Based on the trailer, Deathground promises to be the survival game Jurassic fans have been looking for, mixing deep jungles with InGen looking facilities, it does appear to be heavily Jurassic Park inspired. Check out the video below:
The game already looks very promising and has strong Dino Crisis vibes, and it’s hard to argue with the beautiful imagery that it isn’t Jurassic inspired.
As huge dinosaur fanatics and experienced game developers, we’re building a game that we’re extremely passionate about and believe this is a game people would love to play. For years, we’ve spotted all types of requests and comments across the internet for this game type. We’ve heard your calls and this is our answer! We’re a collective of experienced game development professionals and specialists in Unreal Engine. Beyond this, we have a wide range of talented collaborators we frequently work with who can help us create something incredible. So we feel we’re in a great position to develop a game like this and we’ve come to Kickstarter for your support on this journey!
The game aims to fully immerse you in its world, using dynamic weather changes and unpredictable AI dinosaurs to create a suspenseful and challenging experience for the player.
They are using Unreal Engine 4 to create beautiful environments that scream Isla Nublar/Isla Sorna, and currently there are four main dinosaurs in the game, with more to be added.
The team behind the game are looking for £80,000, and with their experience of 10 plus years working in the industry, they believe reaching that figure will allow them to get the game into early access.
Jaw Drop Games have worked on a number of AAA games, including Alien Isolation, Lego Star Wars, Dirt 5, and more. They share a lot of experience in various forms of gameplay which, when put together, will help make this ‘independent’ game feel as real as it can.
With Universal showing no signs of filling this gap in the video game market, Deathground is worth looking at, and if you’re impressed with what you see then please consider donating to this game. Even a small donation goes a long way, and personally I’m excited to see what the team can really do once they reach their Kickstarter goal.
The campaign ends on August 7 and there are many rewards that come with your pledge, so be sure to go check it out and if you like what you see, donate what you can!
Let us know what you think of this game, and what Jurassic Park game you’d like to see in the comments section below!
Jurassic Park’s groundbreaking special effects are often the topic of conversation when the movie is discussed. So often in fact, that sometimes it can overshadow many other elements of the production that were fundamental in their own way, to creating the movie we know and love.
The production of Jurassic Park began with an adaptation of Michael Crichton’s novel, and those involved with the production considered many different ideas and concepts before landing on the final screenplay. This exploratory phase of development and pre-production has been skimmed over in the movie’s official ‘behind the scenes’ documentaries and books…
Until now. Jurassic Time have launched a new project, one to showcase all of the myriad of ideas that could have been realised if they survived the development stage of Jurassic Park. Jurassic Memoirs dives into these un-seen concepts, sometimes with the aid of personal recollections from those involved with the production.
The first release, Michael Crichton’s Adaptation of Jurassic Park, is a 5-part audio analysis series that explores the variations in Crichton’s own screenplay drafts, and the first part is available to listen to now:
And to follow the above, Jurassic Time will then release Rick Carter’s Adaptation of Jurassic Park, which will be an audio drama with visuals.
Jurassic Time is known for it’s audiobook-style memoir of John Parker Hammond, featuring audio recordings of Richard Attenborough extracted from the video game Trespasser. The audio recordings unveil details about InGen and the islands, which Jurassic Time wanted to preserve. The ‘Definitive Edition’ of that is available in audio, video and book programs.
But aside from those audio recordings, founder of Jurassic Time Derrick Davis has also unveiled never-before-seen concept art and storyboards from Jurassic Park which shed light on ‘The Many Deaths of John Hammond‘, this image below was recently uncovered to help illustrate one of the concepts:
The Jurassic Memoirs website also includes a number of interviews with key people associated with the franchise, including John Bell (Art Director), John Gurche (Concept Artist), Gary Goddard (creator of Jurassic Park: The Ride), and Austin Grossman – the writer of Trespasser.
The website really is filled with a heap of resources and content to further your love for the original movie, so be sure to go check it out, and follow Jurassic Time’s Facebook and Twitter pages for more!
Are you looking forward to tonight’s ‘Watch from Home’ party of Jurassic Park, hosted by Joseph Mazzello? While you know him as Tim Murphy from Jurassic Park, his career has been incredibly diverse, with roles in films like The Social Network, and most recently starring as John Deacon in Bohemian Rhapsody.
We were lucky enough to chat with Joe about all things Jurassic Park, Jurassic World, and dinosaur. We cover a variety of subjects, such as runaway raptors, deleted scenes, and where his character may be today.
Tonight’s watch party starts at 8pm EST, and can be watched in the embeded video above once live. Until then, be sure to read our interview below!
You have an upcoming Jurassic Park ‘watch from home’ with IGN, can you tell us a little bit more about that?
JM: I was approached by Universal first, and I really jumped at the chance! The last time I saw it was in 3D in theatres -a bunch of my friends made me go watch myself, and have their 3D glasses on and look at the screen and look at me back and forth like that for 2 and half hours. That was a chance to really think about what a great movie it was and how it still holds up today. You know I would hold it up against any action movie, any monster movie, really anything. I just think the visual effects hold up really well, the story is beautiful. Spielberg the way he was an artist with every shot, every single one, and you still feel it to this day- the care he took with everything. So any chance that I get to kinda come back to the fans a little bit. If there’s one constant in my entire life, it is guys around my age telling me that they went and saw Jurassic Park 4, 5, 6, or 7 times in theatres and telling me how much they identified with me. They wanted to be me when they were growing up. Stuff like that warms my heart, knowing that I could be apart of something that was so special in people’s lives. To be able to do it for as many people as possible while we’re all at home, we’re all trying to deal with these strange and heartbreaking events together is a great escape for us. Its a way for us to come together and enjoy a great film and impart my insight about it and great memories, and I can wait to do it.
I’ve grown up with Jurassic Park, I’m too young to have seen the original in theaters, but I grew up with it on VHS and it was always a really big part of my life, especially with dinosaurs because ultimately it guided me to go to school for paleontology — though I eventually shifted over to film. But Jurassic Park has been kind of a constant in my life, so outside of Jurassic Park, do you have a continued relationship with dinosaurs, going to the museum or anything along those lines?
JM: Well it’s funny, I have a five year old nephew now who is of course obsessed with dinosaurs. So I’ve been waiting for all this to be over so I can take him to the Natural History Museum in New York and kind of spur his excitement about this thing that was such a big part of my childhood. I think that I’m reliving a lot of it because of him, it’s probably close association with dinosaurs themselves. Jurassic Park of course I live everyday, but dinosaurs, it’s fun to see how excited kids can get about them.
Outside of the Jurassic Park films, do you have a favorite dinosaur that you like that wasn’t a part of the films?
JM: Oh man, that’s tricky looking at Jurassic Park ,and with all the sequels, you see a much bigger variety than you see in the first film. Even like the ‘pterodactyls’… When you saw them in some of the sequels, like in Jurassic World, I thought that was pretty awesome.
So have you kept up with the sequels then?
JM: I have yeah, absolutely! I usually don’t go see them in theaters and then once they kinda…you know I get recognized a lot from the original film. So I try to see them a little more in private now. But yeah, I watched them.
So here’s a question, and its probably a bit of an oddball one but it might the type of thing you would get from a jurassic park fan site. Over the years, Jurassic Park 3 and Jurassic World, had a very long development with many different stories. Was there ever a time that you were potentially going to be involved with Jurassic Park 3 or Jurassic Park 4.
JM: You know, I don’t know if I was. It was probably something that was discussed internally. No one at the time reached out to me about those two films in particular. Obviously, The Lost World, Steven called right away and kinda have me and Arianna come in there, and advance the ball and kind of away we go with the film. And even that was so much fun. But no, in terms of Jurassic World, but if they did, I wasn’t privy to it.
Do you think Tim would have visited Jurassic World when it opened? Do you think that’s something his character would like to do?
JM: My goodness, its funny because I feel there’s still so much character and you could go so many different ways with it. You could go the way it was a traumatizing event and his love for dinosaurs kind of faded – or became a fear instead of a love. Or you could do that it was something more, and he’s a average kid and being the grandson of John Hammond and being the heir to these things that he might want to get involved. But being at the park as a spectator, we could go either way with that, but either way it would be interesting.
It would be interesting to see his character’s perspective. Its funny, there was a comic book series released called Jurassic Park Redemption that featured an adult Tim and he kind of started his own little park, and his rules were no carnivore’s this time and lets do it right, and of course the scientists didn’t listen and things went astray. It would be one of those things that fans have wanted to see where Tim’s role would go. Tim and Lex have a legacy with Hammond and they probably still fit into the puzzle somewhere.
JM: I hope one day that’s something that gets answered. There is so much you can do with these characters and its such a phenomenal franchise that has grown and now been beloved across generations. It’s still a character that is near and dear to my heart and there is so much you can do with him going forward.
Now with Jurassic Park, I’m sure you get asked this a lot, what’s your favorite filming story.
JM: The one that stood out to me, there’s obviously a couple, the Hurricane Inniki, which at the time was the biggest hurricane to hit the US. The fact that was going to be happening, and on the last day of shooting [before halting for the hurricane] we wake up in the morning and they say we’re going to evacuate — but then Steven comes in and says ‘no, we’re going to hangout here, let it pass over us’. We ended up having the entire crew in the ballroom together like it was camp, and the craft services and caterers had a bunch of food for us, they brought in all the lawn chairs from the pool and we all just hung out as this hurricane was coming in. And Steven, because he was so passionate about what he does, and he’s such a perfectionist and has a love for film, his emotion behind this was “I’ve got to go out there and film this thing as it’s approaching, and maybe use it for the movie”. I guess having that kind of personality at the helm, it made me love acting and potentially directing which I ended up doing, only grew. It was something I found so inspiring. It was such a wild and crazy time thinking about how my mom and brother and sister were at home – there were no cell phones and all the phone lines were down so they didn’t know what happened to us. Such a wild time in our lives.
Onset though, a story I tell a bunch that I’m sure you guys know, but on my birthday, we were doing the kitchen scene and I’m supposed to be running to the freezer. I’ve got my limp going and I’m running to the freezer, and the Raptor is supposed to take a right and I’m supposed to take a left. Well the raptor was on wheels and being pushed since it was such a fast shot. The guys lost control of it and it ended up going left with me, and I turned around and its claw hit me in the head. I got knocked down on the floor! Steven came running over to see if I was okay. I was a little bit dizzy but I was alright. And Steven said “well this is as good a time as any, ready everybody?” and he starts singing happy birthday! I had Happy birthday sung to me by the entire crew of Jurassic Park, which was such a wild thing. And after that Steven actually asked me if we could film a little bit more, but at that point I was a little bit out of it. So he said “okay I think we got it, we got it”.
That’s a testament to working with practical animatronic dinosaurs I suppose – they really do make it real, on and off screen.
JM: Absolutely. It was funny too because it sort of played out the way it does in the movie where you’re waiting to see the dinosaurs and don’t really see them. Because first we started shooting in Hawaii, the first things we did mostly were CGI stuff. So it was like the Gallimimus around us that were not there. Then the T. rex coming out and eating one of them, that was just someone holding a big piece of wood that was like two stories high with a Tyrannosaur head made of cardboard on top of it, and guys moving it up and down. And then when we ultimately got to LA and started shooting in the studios we started working with dinosaurs every single day, and at last the Trex. It became so unbelievable how massive these machines were, and Steven would sometimes call me out of school on set, and show me them because he knew I was so interested and he’s got that childhood imagination and still has it. So he always wanted to show me these incredible dinosaurs they were building. Every day on set was wonderful. They were the best days possible, and even the worst day was still better than bad days I had on any other set.
It seems like for everyone involved in the movie, the production was something special and the movie itself with the visual effects, with what Stan Winston Studios did with the animatronics, what ILM did with the CG animals, what really is revolutionary on so many fronts, I think on top of the wonderful story, the great directing, the great acting, its one of the many reason it has held up and is so near and dear to so many people’s hearts.
JM: I agree. Like I said, after Jurassic Park because the CGI was so brilliant, movies started leaning on CGI too much and that continues to this day where a lot of films look like cartoons. As good as CGI often is, you still know when you can actually reach out and touch something. There’s something to be said, even the puppeteering back in the day, even if they looked a little wonky, you still know it was there. I think that’s also what helps make the originals so iconic. And the other thing is, it’s really a small story if you think about it. Like what is the movie Jurassic Park really about? Yes it’s about dinosaurs, it’s about monsters, it’s about the chase, it’s about all of that. But it’s really about very few people stuck in a small place, and this guy who doesn’t want to have children who is forced to take care of two of them in a dire situation, and learns to love them. That at its core is so Spielberg. It’s a story about a father, a family, a member that pushes against it but ultimately finding that redemption, and finding that love. I just think that when a story can play out on the small personal level, and play out on a grand scale, when those things come together you can tell it’s a classic and that’s what Jurassic Park is.
We talk about it a lot, the sense of intimacy across the board in the original Jurassic Park is what makes it so relatable on a character level, makes the story so engaging, which ultimately makes the action so believable. There’s a certain tactile sense to it that makes the story really resonate, and the things that play out visually really anchor to reality. Like you said with CG, one of the things about shooting practical is that practical has limitations and imperfections like the real world has limitations and imperfections.
And sometimes I see CG, beautiful and incredible work, but it almost starts to break the sense of believability when everything is so beautiful, so incredible. The sunsets are so perfect, the mountain range so ideally placed that, while it looks photoreal but you as an audience member know its not real, and the illusion breaks. It’s interesting how Jurassic Park, being out there on location as much, embracing these ‘limitations’ made it feel all the more genuine.
JM: Right and thats not to say that brilliant, brilliant films haven’t been made using CGI almost completely but I think that there’s still that feeling you want to have something tangible there to hold onto as the audience. Something that you know is there, something that is real that you get invested in. Because when the more you can make people feel actual danger, the more invested you’re going to get, the more you are going to feel the plight of those characters.
Absolutely. You talked about the Raptor in the kitchen and how it hit you but what do you think has happened to that Raptor that got locked in the freezer. Where do you think that Raptor is today?
JM: Well it probably ate a lot of frozen meatballs. So it did okay, for a little while anyway. But who knows, maybe one day there will be a sequel in the works about the frozen raptor.
The frozen raptor being thawed out. On its revenge spree.
JM: Exactly. I think it’s perfect. Who knows what sub-zero temperatures do to dinosaurs. We’re about to find out!
Exactly, but we’ll probably have to wait for Jurassic Park 27 on the moon. Jurassic Moon.
Ok, so I imagine you’ve been asked this before, but when you’re in the Ford Explorer tour vehicle in Jurassic Park, the T. rex pushes its head down through the viewing dome — I guess when the window is on top of you and Arrianna Richards, a part of the window had broken off? Which was not supposed to happen.
JM: That’s correct.
Was that a scarier moment when that happened?
JM: You know, in real life, these are really heavy machines that are being handled by people in a remote way. And so there was inherent danger just even if they were big blocks, the fact that they were being controlled and brought towards you. And it was supposed to hit the plexiglass, it was supposed to come down. But it was not supposed to come down with that kind of force that it would actually come down that far, and actually break the plexiglass in half. Actually, you can see it in the movie that there’s a quick shot of the Trex with a missing tooth in that moment because the tooth fell out when it hit the glass, and they tried for like half an hour to get it back in and it wasn’t sticking, so we just said screw it we’ll just do it without it. So that’s a good little thing to watch out for, not an Easter egg. But it’s something funny to watch out for if you can pause it.
Another question a lot of people had, are there any notable deleted scenes that your character was involved in?
JM: Oh boy, I don’t think that’s a question I’ve ever been asked. I don’t think there was anything that I was in, a scene, that was cut. I’m sure in the original script there were things that were cut or moved around. There were certain shots I remember that were cut out. There was one in particular where when the self driving vehicles were on the track, we were supposed to go over this land bridge – a real land bridge in Hawaii – that had no guards on either side of it, they were supposed to have us go over it but we were like “no way”. So they have some doubles in the car of us, and have it go over the bridge for us. But that was something that was cut, I’m not sure why. They were little shots like that, but I can’t think of any scene in particular.
I believe one of the scenes people were questioning was I think in the children’s novelization, it talks about a scene where Grant starts talking about the Tyrannosaurus after the attack, while Lex and Tim are in the storm drain, but he realizes they are too traumatized to continue the conversation. So a lot of people wondered if that was filmed, or was that just part of the novelization from the script.
JM: That was not something that I remember filming. I can say with 99.9% certainty that we did not film it.
Okay! Another question we got was what was the hair and makeup process for making your electrocuted look.
JM: Ha! I can’t totally remember but it was my hair. Boy I wish I could remember. Monty Hall, I think he did the make up. But I can’t totally remember but it didn’t take any longer than usual. Pretty much a lot of hairspray to make it stand up. Actually Spielberg always had an issue with me coming to the set, my hair was always too neat in his opinion. And so whenever I would come on set, and no matter what, he would come over to me and rub his fingers through my hair, and just jostle it around a little just to make sure it was always messy. But I can’t quite remember the process but if I could I would do it again. For the IGN Watch From Home.
Are there any small details that Jurassic “superfans” would appreciate or know or what to know from your experiences?
JM: I think the answer to that question has to be join us tonight, because when I watch the movie is when all these things really come rushing back to me. I’m gonna try my best to really try and dig into the depths of my brain to remember every little moment.
Do you keep up with the Jurassic Park community to a degree just to see what people are talking about or are interested in over the years?
JM: I will say they definitely keep up with me. I get great messages all the time from Jurassic Park fans, and I’ve had a lot of great conversations around the world with people who love the film so it keeps me up to date just having people who enjoy these films so much. It makes me feel a part of the family which is a wonderful thing because it’s such a wonderful franchise to be part of, they’re making great movies and my hope is we keep seeing Jurassic Park a long way into the future.
We wanted to end this with a huge thank you to Joe for taking the time to do this interview with us, and chat all things Jurassic. You can follow him on his Twitter here, and Instagram here. We hope to see you tonight during the Watch from Home stream!