Interview with Funko Games and Prospero Hall – Inspirations Behind NEW Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar Game!

Earlier this month we were fortunate to be able to participate in a playthrough event at Funko Hollywood HQ with Funko Games and Prospero Hall for their new game: Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar!

During this event we had the immense privilege of interviewing two of the top minds behind the development of this brand new tabletop legacy game: Deirdre Cross, Vice President of Funko Games, and Ruby Wishnietsky, Editorial Lead for Prospero Hall. These two are big fans of the Jurassic franchise and have done an incredible job with this game. Read on to hear how they injected their passion for Jurassic and tabletop gaming into Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar!


From left to right: Jennifer Durst (Jurassic Jen), Brad Jost (The Jurassic Park Podcast), Deirdre Cross (Funko Games), Ruby Wishnietsky (Prospero Hall), Nima Neemz Nakhshab (JurassicYourWorld), and Caleb Burnett (Jurassic Outpost).


What is your relationship with Jurassic Park and Jurassic World, and how did that influence developing this game?

Ruby Wishnietsky:

“My relationship with Jurassic Park and Jurassic World was definitely deepened through the development of this game. I am a huge amusement park fan. So honestly, my clearest relationship to them is riding the ride in Florida – going through that wonderful boat ride and getting freaked out by dinosaurs.”

Deirdre Cross:

“My relationship with the Jurassic World franchise is, I would say, very deep and quite intimate. I reread the book every year and I don’t even know how many times I’ve seen the first film. But really, I celebrate the whole thing. I’m so into Jurassic World that I have two cats at my house – one of them is named Dr. Grant and the other one is named Dr. Malcolm. And they’ve both grown too big to fit in our game box.”


That is so awesome. So the word “legacy” – it feels like that’s important. How does the word legacy connect with the franchise, this game, and everything that’s going on with the new films?

Ruby:

“Well, the, the word ‘legacy’ in the title of the game, Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar, has a few different meanings. One of the meanings of course is that the whole story is John Hammond’s legacy, right? As it goes, you know, from the inception of the park, his dream of the park, and then carries on through the whole Jurassic story. The whole thing is his legacy.

The other meaning that it has is that legacy is a type of gameplay, which means that the game changes over time. As you make decisions, it changes permanently as you and your playgroup explore the stories and the adventure and build your own park. That’s really the meaning of legacy for us in this context.”

Deirdre:

“And as you may have noticed playing the game, and as you will continue to notice, it has even deeper meanings as you play through our particular game. Not just Hammond but other characters will leave their legacy on the island and on your part. And so you’ll see how that plays out as you continue your adventures.”


What themes from the Jurassic franchise, whether it’s the books or the films, were important to you to put into this game?

Ruby:

“I have a couple that relate to some specific aspects of the game that I love to talk about. One of the big themes that played a big role in our art direction is the early fear of how technology is going to affect the natural world. In the art direction of the game, we went very much from the perspective of what influenced the creators of the Jurassic stories: 1950s and ’60s pulp comics, monster movie posters, and even scientific textbooks. Thinking about how this exciting new technology field of genetics is going to change things for the better or for the worse – who knows?

One of the other themes that I think we play on a lot in the gameplay sense is the wonder at the unknown and learning with our new scientific knowledge – learning some aspects of what used to be and what was extinct, but not having the whole story.”

Deirdre:

“I mean, we’re filling in the gaps. You know, there’s still gaps in the code, the DNA. And we’re sort of guessing at what it was. And in the mechanical gameplay of our game, there are gaps there and the players can guess – maybe they’ll guess right and be a little more prepared, or maybe something’s going to go very differently than what they expected.

I also feel like a theme is ‘you can’t put it back in the box.’ Like, there are things you can’t undo.”


The artwork is gorgeous. Can you talk a little bit more about what it was like developing the artwork and all of the stickers and game pieces and everything?

Deirdre:

“Like Ruby was saying about where we went to look for our inspiration for the art style and everything – back to the fifties and sixties, pulp and scientific textbooks, scientific magazines. But beyond that we also had this great opportunity to do these sculpts in the game, the sculpted miniatures. And we worked very closely with Universal and Amblin to get their files for 3D dinosaurs and stuff. We’re getting all this amazing stuff and we start to realize, well, yeah, we can just make the dinosaurs.

A lot of games just have dinosaurs in them, but what if our game had a more immersive sculpture that tells a story on its own that is also a really beautiful storytelling piece? So when you look at our sculpted velociraptor game piece, it’s two raptors coming out of the door of the kitchen. It’s so cool.

It’s so great to get to really pour so much creativity into those tiny pieces that are on the table. And I think as you look at the whole product, from the stickers to the card art to even the liner of the box, everything is bespoke and original to the product.”


Last question: You said you read the books often. Was there anything from those that influenced this game at all?

Deirdre:

“I think, like what Ruby’s saying about the exploration of science and the tension of the unknown… If you’ve also read the books, you understand what Steven Spielberg was doing when he created the films, because that was his source material. The story he’s trying to tell, when you also read the books as more backstory, there’s a lot more in there about that tension. Though our game does not technically cover the books, you can definitely feel their DNA.”



We cannot thank Deirdre Cross, Vice President of Funko Games, and Ruby Wishnietsky, Editorial Lead for Prospero Hall, enough for taking the time to speak with us about their passions for Jurassic and this fantastic new game. It’s clear their love for all things Jurassic and board games has been woven into this product, and the beautiful result speaks for itself. Jurassic fans are going to love experiencing this game.

You can still secure your copy of the game by backing its Kickstarter campaign here! What do you think so far about this game, its visual style, and the influences of the creators? Let us know in the comments below, and stay tuned to Jurassic Outpost for all Jurassic news!

Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar Kickstarter is now LIVE!

The campaign for Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar, the brand new tabletop legacy game from Prospero Hall and Funko Games, has launched today on Kickstarter! Click here to back the campaign and reserve your copy, and read on for more information and photos from this incredible game!

From Prospero Hall and Funko Games:

A Tabletop Game 65 Million Years in the Making – Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar – Available on Kickstarter Today!

“Hold onto your butts!”  After months of anticipation, Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar is available on Kickstarter starting today from Prospero Hall, the acclaimed design studio of Funko Games. This marks Prospero Hall’s introduction to tabletop’s growing legacy game genre and the first-ever legacy game based on a major motion picture franchise.

“This is the biggest and most ambitious project we have undertaken as a board game studio and it seems only fitting it is rooted in one of the most epic franchises of all time – Jurassic World,” said Deirdre Cross, Vice President of Sales, Marketing and Development at Funko Games. “We continue to push the envelope for what’s possible with licensed games, and Universal has always been an enthusiastic partner.  Now after two years of creative development, we can’t wait to bring Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar to fans of tabletop gaming, legacy gaming and Jurassic World.”

Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar tells the franchise’s story in 12 one-to-two hour long adventures, encompassing the entire Jurassic World franchise from before the events in Jurassic Park all the way through Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom and everything in between, including original stories that fill in the gaps between films and a spoiler-free ending for fans eagerly awaiting the premiere of Jurassic World Dominion in June 2022.  

In Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar, players have the chance to unlock up to 12 dinosaurs, and more than 21 new and familiar characters with unique abilities, knowledge and powers that can be unlocked as the campaign advances. Ultimately, players work together throughout the game’s entirety to shape their own Jurassic Park. From building placement to character selection and dinosaur development, every choice leads to a consequence – good or bad.

Additional details for Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar can be found in a series of behind-the-scene videos, including a First LookGameplay PreviewArt & Design and What’s Inside the Box. Visit the game’s Kickstarter page and pledge to receive a copy; fulfillment expected in Fall 2022.

About Prospero Hall

Prospero Hall is a collaborative game design studio in Seattle, Washington. Each project starts with a vision – the kind of game we want to make, the vibe, the look and feel, the reason for it to exist. Today, all games developed by Prospero Hall are published by Funko Games and deliver inventive game mechanics and engaging stories for shared experiences that bring fans and families back to the table again and again.

About the JURASSIC WORLD Franchise

From Universal Pictures and Amblin Entertainment, Jurassic World immerses audiences of all ages in a new era of wonder and thrills where dinosaurs and humankind must learn to coexist. Jurassic World is more than a film franchise. At every turn, this $5 billion film series delivers a larger-than-life destination for exploration, discovery, and epic adventure. Dinosaurs live again and they live in Jurassic WorldJurassic World Dominion debuts in theaters June 2022.



The creative minds behind Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar have created an absolutely incredible, visually gorgeous game that Jurassic fans will love. It is truly worth the support of their Kickstarter to receive your own copy. Be sure to check out the game and their campaign, and follow Jurassic Outpost for the latest Jurassic news!

Beyond the Gates Returns With First-Ever Lex Murphy Figure and Phil Tippett Guest Appearance!

What is it? It’s a Velociraptor. It’s inside.

A new set joins Mattel’s Jurassic World Legacy Collection in this new episode of Beyond The Gates! Last month we showcased an item from The Lost World, this month we’re heading 87 miles Northeast of Isla Sorna back to Isla Nublar, with the Jurassic Park Kitchen Encounter Set.

The Jurassic Park Kitchen Encounter brings one of the most beloved scenes from Jurassic Park to life, featuring a Velociraptor, Tim, and the first-ever action figure of Lex Murphy! Lex has long been requested since the Kenner days, and Mattel has finally brought her to life in collectible form. The episode shows off the new set in action, and goes behind the scenes with toy designer Rafael Bencosme so if you haven’t already be sure to watch.

Not only that – the Dinosaur Supervisor himself Phil Tippett, guides us through his work contributing to the creation of this now infamous scene the toy set was based upon. It was an absolute honor to talk to Phil, and his work on Jurassic Park was absolutely key to making the scene – and velociraptors – so terrifying.

Finally, this episode included one more surprise — the announcement of fans-first “Generation Jurassic” event occurring at Universal Studios Hollywood April 28th! While we can’t share more details about the event quite yet, we’re quite excited about it and will have more to say soon. We really hope to see you there!

As always, stay tuned to Jurassic Outpost for more news – there’s a lot of exciting things on the horizon.

Jurassic World: The Legacy Of Isla Nublar Playthrough Event and First Impressions!


“Welcome… to Jurassic Park.”

This weekend we were fortunate to be invited to Funko’s Hollywood HQ and store for a special event centered around the upcoming legacy game from Prospero Hall and Funko Games: Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar. During the event we got to spend time with other great Jurassic folks as well as the people responsible for developing this new game. Read on for our first impressions and exclusive photos of our playthrough!

From left to right: Jennifer Durst (Jurassic Jen), Nima Neemz Nakhshab (JurassicYourWorld), Caleb Burnett (Jurassic Outpost), and Brad Jost (The Jurassic Park Podcast) posing in the immersive Jurassic Park section of the Funko Hollywood HQ and store.


“A gripping journey of ambition and adventure.”

Our first impression of Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar is that it is visually gorgeous from start to finish. The art of the box, instruction materials, gameplay pieces, and more were all inspired by science fiction art, comic books, and B-monster movies of the 1950s. This game is an absolutely massive, intricate story that gives players the chance to experience what it would be like to build John Hammond’s dream from the ground up. Up to four players collaboratively work to set up the Isla Nublar we all know and love, building everything from the Visitor Center to the genetics lab to dinosaur paddocks. View exclusive images of our first playthrough and the special edition “chase” game box cover in the gallery below:


“Welcome to Isla Nublar.”

That phrase is what players are greeted with upon their entry into Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar. The game’s title communicates important aspects of what’s in store for its players: A ‘legacy’ board game requires that many decisions you make with your characters and in placing things on the island can be quite permanent. After choosing from a few classic Jurassic characters and a new one or two (with more to be unlocked as you play), the adventures of the game begin. Including the tutorial, the game contains twelve story based adventures with five “rounds” in each. Players must work together to learn how to build their own Jurassic Park while completing objectives, solving puzzles, and running away from newly created dinosaurs. Players are aided by their characters’ unique special abilities, and once you get the hang of it, this game is an absolute Jurassic blast.


“Creation is an act of sheer will.”

Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar is a wonderful expedition into what it would be like for players to leave their own Jurassic legacy on the island of Isla Nublar. We were only able to get through a couple of the adventures in our allotted time, but there was already so much to love about this beautifully complex game and the immense amount of interwoven Jurassic franchise lore. Funko Games and Prospero Hall consulted with Industrial Light & Magic, Amblin, and Universal Pictures to create the stunning artwork, instruction booklets and stickers, sculpted game pieces, and game boxes that will keep Jurassic fans and players engaged in the awesome experience they’ve crafted.


“Next time it’ll be flawless…”

We cannot thank the folks at Funko, Funko Games, and Prospero Hall enough for the invitation to this playthrough event and for the experience of the amazing game they’ve put together. During the event we also had the opportunity to speak with the developers and the leading folks at Funko Games about their philosophy and experience when developing this game – be on the lookout for those interviews very soon!

Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar is headed to Kickstarter on March 22, 2022, and supporting upon launch reserves your copy of the game. Retail pickups for the game are expected to be announced in the near future. Are you excited for Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar? Let us know in the comments below and stay tuned to Jurassic Outpost for all upcoming Jurassic news!

4-Part Interview With Storyboard Artist David Lowery Unveils New Art & Details From The Making Of The ‘Jurassic’ Films!

Join me on a lengthy and engaging discussion with David Lowery! He was the storyboard artist on the entire ‘Jurassic Park’ trilogy and the first ‘Jurassic World’ film. His talents were also part of the productions for ‘Honey, I Shrunk The Kids’, ‘Rango’, ‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’, ‘The Mandalorian’, and many others. Included in the interview are a myriad of David’s storyboards, with some that have never been seen before!

Click Image To Watch The Full Interview Playlist!

There are four parts to the interview, with each one focusing on a different film. The first part delves into how it all began with ‘Jurassic Park’! David explains how he got involved with the film, what it was like to shape classic sequences with Steven Spielberg, why certain scenes were cut, and a lot more! Newly-revealed storyboards show Robert Muldoon attempting to tranquilize the Tyrannosaurus Rex after it has escaped from its paddock; a scene inspired by the novel that was never filmed! There is also a drawing featured that was made by Spielberg himself!

In Part Two, David recounts his memories from working on ‘The Lost World: Jurassic Park’. Before the film even began, he first helped Spielberg create a new studio: DreamWorks! From there, his role expanded in the first ‘Jurassic’ sequel, working even closer with Spielberg and storyboarding many sequences, including: the thrilling Stegosaurus meeting, the terrifying trailer attack by the Tyrannosaurs, and the divisive San Diego chase (a bigger climax that was created due to pressure from the success of ‘Independence Day’ the year prior)! For the first time, we also get a look at the full storyboards for the Rex raid on the hunter camp and the raptor attack in the long grass! He also details how the film’s paleontologist advisor, Jack Horner, helped shape the look of a shot involving footprints that was left largely unfilmed!

The third part of the interview touches on ‘Jurassic Park 3’, and what it was like shifting to a different director: Joe Johnston. David remembers what it was like being at the extraordinary indoor jungle sets! He also details the challenges he and the production faced to please eager audiences with the anticipated film. The story went through many changes, with several never-before-seen storyboard sequences featuring a group of kids as they are faced with Isla Sorna’s fierce inhabitants! We also discuss the interesting change of the film’s lead dinosaur from Baryonyx to Spinosaurus; something that was evident in an early logo!

In the final part of the interview, we discuss the early storyboards David did for ‘Jurassic Park 4’, which would eventually become ‘Jurassic World’. Many of the sequences he storyboarded either didn’t make it into the film or were tweaked in various ways after he had left the project. He explains what the original opening of the film was before Colin Trevorrow came on board to direct, and it definitely sounded… interesting! Despite leaving the film during its production hiatus to work for Jon Favreau on Disney’s ‘The Jungle Book’ remake (leading David to eventually storyboard for the highly-praised ‘Star Wars’ Disney+ show, ‘The Mandalorian’), he was thrilled with how the film, and largely the series as whole, turned out. At the end of the interview, we are treated with a video “animatic” of David Lowery’s “Opening Montage” storyboards from the film, fan-made by Bernard A. Kyer (beginning with footage from the fantastic computer game ‘Jurassic Explorer‘)! It shows a vastly expanded version of what the opening to ‘Jurassic World’ could have been!

I’d like to thank David Lowery for taking the time to reminisce about his experiences working on the ‘Jurassic’ films, and the many fantastic storyboards he created that are truly a work of art!

I hope you enjoy this multi-part interview! After watching it, what were some of your favorite stories David told? Which storyboard sequences captured your imagination the most! Share your thoughts in the comments below, and as always stay tuned to Jurassic Outpost for the latest!

Beyond The Gates Returns with the All-New Jurassic World HAMMOND COLLECTION!

The gates are BACK open with another season of our collector-focused show Beyond The Gates!

We’ve once again partnered up with the fantastic teams at Universal, Target, and Mattel to produce this fun, Jurassic reveal show from the fans – for the fans! Check out the debut episode below:

In episode 1 we speak with Mattel’s toy designer Gregory Murphy about the brand new collector focused line: the Hammond Collection, and dive into the designing and painting of the two debut items: The Lost World’s Parasaurolophus, and Fallen Kingdom’s Baryonyx.

The Hammond Collection named for Jurassic Park’s founder John Parker Hammond and sets a new standard for Jurassic collectables, marrying the detail you knew from the Amber Collection with the core 3.75″ scale. This means more dinosaurs than ever of all sizes from across the entire franchise.

Discover the thrills and adventure of the Jurassic World Series captured in the Hammond Collection, named for Jurassic Park’s founder John Parker Hammond and setting a new standard for dinosaur collectables, including the fearsome Baryonyx! With premium design and attention to detail, this 13 inch long Baryonyx from Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom has incredible movie-accurate design, color and texture, and 20 points of articulation, from a terrifying wide double-articulated jaw to a posable tail and 3 joints on the back legs.

With premium design that is movie-quality in detail, this 12 inch long Parasaurolophus action figure from The Lost World: Jurassic Park will delight fans and collectors. This figure has incredible movie-accurate design, color and texture, and about 14 points of articulation, including an articulated mouth, tail and multiple joints on the back legs.

Watch the debut episode of season 2 now and pre-order these amazing toys directly at Target.com!

We’re so excited to bring another season of exclusive reveals to the Jurassic fandom! Beyond The Gates will continue with monthly episode and will feature more items from the Hammond Collection, the Legacy Collection and of course, the upcoming Jurassic World: Dominion.

The next episode launches February 16th with an exclusive Legacy Collection set you won’t want to miss! Stay tuned.

About Jurassic World:
From Universal Pictures and Amblin Entertainment, Jurassic World immerses audiences of all ages in a new era of wonder and thrills where dinosaurs and humankind must learn to coexist. Jurassic World is set against a global backdrop of diverse locations, with a sprawling story grounded in believable science and populated by distinctive dinosaurs, heroic humans, and cunning villains at both ends of the evolutionary spectrum.

About Beyond The Gates:
Created in partnership with Universal Pictures, Amblin Entertainment, Target, and Mattel, Beyond The Gates is produced by Outpost Creative, LLC which was founded by Chris Pugh and Jack De La Mare in late 2020. This show represents a unique partnership between many parties which has allowed for a true Jurassic Park passion project made for the fans, by the fans.

FUNKO Announces New JURASSIC WORLD: THE LEGACY OF ISLA NUBLAR Board Game!

Funko Games‘ acclaimed design studio Prospero Hall has announced a new board game: Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar, slated for release in 2022!

The game was first teased back in September, and Polygon shared the exclusive reveal today.


View the full First Look at Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar video below:


From Funko Games‘ full press release:

Prospero Hall Reveals Details of Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar Legacy Tabletop Game

With more than 24 hours of thrilling customizable adventures, Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar will be coming to Kickstarter in March 2022.

Life finds a way,” and so does the passionate team at Prospero Hall, the acclaimed development studio of Funko Games, who has created a legacy game based on a blockbuster entertainment franchise — Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar, which will be launching on Kickstarter on March 22, 2022. First Look Known for its inventive game mechanics and gorgeous design, Prospero Hall delivers more than 24 hours of customizable, unique gameplay that transforms into an endlessly re-playable board game upon completion of the final adventure.

The game concept, based on the Jurassic World franchise from Universal Pictures and Amblin Entertainment, was announced this September at Gen Con. The game takes you through storylines found in all five films in the Jurassic World franchise – from the creation of “Jurassic Park,” through the fall of the “Jurassic World” theme park! Over the course of 12 thrilling adventures, you will transform Isla Nublar into an astonishing paradise, build your own vision of the theme park, and breed new dinosaurs.  Each adventure takes about two hours to complete – delivering more than 24 hours of rich, immersive game play experiences.

Players can team up and play as familiar characters such as Dr. John Hammond, Dr. Alan Grant, Dr. Ellie Sattler, Claire Dearing, Owen Grady, and more fan favorites and all new characters while developing the park and unlocking new dinosaurs. Each decision made during play will uniquely and permanently affect the course of the game, resulting in dramatically different outcomes.

“We always aim to create games we want to play around stories and characters we love most,” said Deirdre Cross, Vice President of Prospero Hall.  “This project has been in development for years, which has allowed us to experiment and innovate.  We believe we are redefining the legacy game genre in a way that will surprise and delight tabletop and Jurassic World fans.”

 Gameplay begins with detailed miniatures of four dinosaurs: Tyrannosaurus rexVelociraptorBrachiosaurus, and Triceratops. As players research and expand the park, they will unlock more dinosaurs from the mystery boxes while keeping park employees and visitors safe.  The players’ experience will culminate in an endlessly replayable game shaped by their own unique park.

Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar will be coming to Kickstarter on March 22, 2022 for $120, distributed by Funko Games.  Weighing a whopping 7 pounds, Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublarhas a unique 1950s art style inspired by the comic books and media that influenced the creation of the beloved franchise. 

Those interested in learning more about the game are encouraged to follow the Kickstarter page at funkogames.com/JWLKickstarter for updates and to be notified on launch day.

About Prospero Hall:

Prospero Hall is a collaborative game design studio in Seattle, Washington. Each of our projects starts with a vision – the kind of game we want to make, the vibe, the look and feel, the reason for it to exist. Today, all games developed by Prospero Hall are published by Funko Games and deliver inventive game mechanics and engaging stories for shared experiences that bring fans and families back to the table again and again.

About the JURASSIC WORLD Franchise:

From Universal Pictures and Amblin Entertainment, Jurassic World immerses audiences of all ages in a new era of wonder and thrills where dinosaurs and humankind must learn to coexist. Jurassic World is more than a film franchise. At every turn, this $5 billion film series delivers a larger-than-life destination for exploration, discovery, and epic adventure. Dinosaurs live again and they live in Jurassic WorldJurassic World: Dominion debuts in theaters June 2022.


Funko Games will also be sharing an exclusive first look at Jurassic World: The Legacy of Isla Nublar at PAX Unplugged 2021:


You can view a few gorgeous images of the game and gameplay below:


We are sold on this game on the fantastic artwork and font choices alone. You can view and support its Kickstarter here.

What do you think? Are you excited for the release of this new game? Let us know in the comments below, and stay tuned to Jurassic Outpost for all Jurassic news!

Images courtesy of Prospero Hall and Funko Games.

Artist William Stout Shares ‘Escape From Jurassic Park’ Animated Series Insights at SDCC Panel!

William Stout, whose book The Dinosaurs: A Fantastic New View of a Lost Era inspired Michael Crichton’s Jurassic Park, presented a “Spotlight on William Stout” panel at San Diego Comic-Con Special Edition this weekend, and we were fortunate enough to attend. During the presentation he shared some very fun insights into his work on the ‘Escape From Jurassic Park’ animated series as well as stories from his career in the art and film industries – most interestingly those from his time in the world of Jurassic Park.

William Stout’s career spans more than 50 years, and his love for dinosaurs spans even longer. He wrote and illustrated his book The Dinosaurs: A Fantastic New View of a Lost Era in order to incorporate and share new discoveries about dinosaurs’ lives and behavior.

One of his first major film credits was Conan The Barbarian, and he first met Kathleen Kennedy (producer/executive producer of the first three Jurassic Park films) in the production office of that film. Through Kennedy and other connections in the industry, his name was in conversations surrounding the production of Jurassic Park in the early 1990s. Stout was among those considered by Steven Spielberg to be the production designer for the film. Though he was very interested and thought he could’ve been perfect for the job, Spielberg later chose Rick Carter (who did an incredible job). When asked about this, Stout said:

“There are a couple of sayings in Hollywood: ‘The more perfect you are for a job, the less likely it is that you’ll get it’ and also ‘The more you want a job, the less likely it is that you’ll get it.’ I really wanted the job. It was the only job I ever really pursued employment on. Others just came to me. I also think they were worried based on my prior knowledge of dinosaurs that I might suggest something that Spielberg didn’t want, which I never would have done. I was extremely interested in the job and pursued it very hard, harder than any other job in my career. And sometimes the jobs you pursue that hard are the ones you end up not getting.”

Stout certainly would have had a very unique take on the production of Jurassic Park. He remains a huge fan despite it all.

When asked about his time working on ‘Escape From Jurassic Park’, Stout said:

“Working on the Jurassic Park animated series was so fantastic for me. It was heavily inspired by European and German comic book series – not only the humans but the dinosaurs as well. It was meant for primetime, and for adults and family members. It was not gonna be a kiddie show, and they were gonna use a lot of CG animation to do the vehicles and things. We shot a trailer for it that was just incredible. But about the time they decided they would show it to Steven Spielberg (because they needed his final blessing on the project), he had been so inundated with Jurassic Park merchandising and marketing that he was sick of it. He didn’t even look at the trailer, he just said ‘Nah, I don’t even wanna do it.'”

The unfortunate cancellation of the series is truly a shame. It sounds incredible every time it comes up in conversation, and it seems Stout really loved working on it. The image above, according to Stout, was “inspired by zookeepers feeding Condors at the San Diego Zoo.” You can view some of his concept artwork for ‘Escape From Jurassic Park’ in the gallery below. Read our exclusive coverage of the full season one plot of ‘Escape From Jurassic Park’ here.

What do you think about these new insights and stories from William Stout? Let us know in the comments, and stay tuned for more Jurassic coverage from San Diego Comic-Con!

Images and concept art courtesy of William Stout. Visit his website to see his incredible Jurassic works and more!

Insight Editions “Jurassic Park Visual History” Book Is Released, But Is It “Ultimate”?

For years, fans of ‘Jurassic Park’ have wanted an art book of the franchise’s original three films. While we have had wonderful “making of” books for both ‘Jurassic Park’ and ‘The Lost World: Jurassic Park’ since the films were released, there was only so many of the thousands of production artwork that could have been displayed. ‘Jurassic Park 3’ never even got any form of a “behind the scenes” book at all.

Insight Editions has a new book that claims to change all of that, with “Jurassic Park: The Ultimate Visual History“. They describe it as:

The most comprehensive book about the Jurassic Park trilogy to date, Jurassic Park: The Ultimate Visual History begins with an in-depth account of the making of Spielberg’s original film, including rare and never-before-seen imagery and exclusive interviews with key creatives. Readers will then unearth the full history of the trilogy, from The Lost World: Jurassic Park to Jurassic Park III, through unprecedented access to the creative process behind the films. Fans will also find a fascinating look at the wider world of the saga, including video games, toys, comics, and more, exploring the lasting legacy of the movies and their influence on pop culture.

But after all this time, is this new book truly the “ultimate visual history”? Unfortunately, it’s not; but it is a good attempt with some beautiful new images and information thanks to the “key creatives” from the film’s production.

WHAT’S GOOD?

VISUAL STYLE

The book is visually pleasing, featuring Jurassic-inspired borders around the pages, filling them up with as much colorful artwork and photographs as they can. The text is neatly placed within it all, and nothing ever feels too crammed or out of place.

EXCLUSIVE INTROS/OUTROS FROM THE ORIGINAL TRIO

Sam Neil, Laura Dern, and Jeff Goldblum each get their very own pages in the book to speak about the franchise from their own words. This is a nice personal touch to the book that fans will love. For example, Laura Dern recounts:

My favorite memory is going to the Amblin offices to watch Jurassic Park for the first time. We were in this small screening room, and it was just me, Steven, Jeff, and Sam. Steven’s assistant very kindly brought us popcorn, the lights went down, and we watched our movie. It’s a beautiful thing to see a movie with your filmmaker. […] You really feel the beauty of the collaboration, and there is nothing like it. And, in that moment, we realized Steven had made a world none of us had ever seen before—not even in our wildest dreams. The four of us were screaming and crying. It’s one of the great memories of my life, and to be able to share in the magic he created was really incredible.

NEW IMAGES

As hoped for, there are some never-before-seen illustrations, and some that are seen in better quality than in the past. Across the board, ‘Jurassic Park”s Art Director John Bell fills this book with amazing artwork for all 3 films (most were recently seen in advance on his website). One of the new illustrations is of Dennis Nedry in his Jeep, driving during the storm toward the East Dock, thwarted by crashed machinery that blocks his path.

Storyboard Artist David Lowery also provides several new storyboards from all 3 films, including little Benjamin’s point of view in his San Diego house when the T-Rex arrives (complete with an E.T. toy reference that didn’t make it into the film, but later would in ‘Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom’).

NEW INFORMATION

While many stories do get recounted to drive a narrative for the book, there are plenty of bits of new information thanks to new interviews.

For ‘Jurassic Park’, several details are revealed: Spielberg’s infatuation with dinosaurs as a kid thanks to museum exhibits, lowering the budget was the reason the baby Triceratops scene was ultimately cut, John Williams expresses his delight writing the music for the Raptors, and even Spielberg’s take on there suddenly being a drop in the T-rex paddock: There’s a T. rex [there]! [The audience isn’t] gonna notice anything else but that!. There is also mention of how Ian Malcolm was almost cut from the film, more than once, until Jeff Goldblum auditioned for the role:

Reading lines from the novel, Goldblum, known for playing a brilliant yet troubled scientist in The Fly (1986), immediately captured Malcolm’s essence. “I watched the tape with Steven and we just went, ‘Yes!’” says Hirshenson. Jim Carrey, a few years away from his breakthrough role in 1994’s The Mask, also tried out for the part and made a strong impression. But Hirshenson instinctively knew Goldblum was perfect for Malcolm: “He just has a persona and speech pattern like nobody else . . . such a wonderful oddball!” Goldblum’s take on Malcolm was so compelling that it convinced Spielberg to keep the character. Recalls Koepp: “Steven said, ‘I know why you want to cut him. But Jeff Goldblum came in and was just reading from the book, and he was so good.’” With the actor’s distinct vocal patterns in mind, the character finally clicked for Koepp, and he wrote Malcolm back into the script: “Once I started picturing Jeff, it was easy. He’s such a distinctive actor. He was perfect for the part.”

For ‘The Lost World’, Spielberg reveals how he originally was going to do a third film where dinosaurs got off the island until he realized he likely wouldn’t do another one, which was a big reason why the climax of ‘The Lost World’ changed to San Diego’s T-Rex rampage. There is also a brief mention of why Kelly became Malcolm’s daughter instead of a student, like she was in the novel: to mirror the protection of the T-Rex’s offspring with that of Malcolm’s. But perhaps the most interesting new detail is that screenwriter David Koepp directed some second unit footage for the film, which shaped how one sequence played out due to a circumstance:

After Spielberg and the main crew returned to LA, David Koepp stayed in Kaua‘i to direct the second unit, principally shooting an early sequence where a chartered boat ferries Malcolm, Van Owen, and Carr to the island. “It was supposed to be a sequence of them landing the boat,” says Koepp. “People and equipment pour off the boat, and they have this conversation on the beach.” But on the day of the shoot, the tide changed and the boat they were filming on got stuck on a sandbar. Panicked, Koepp called Spielberg. “I remember Steven was on a plane, and I was talking to him, saying, ‘We’re stuck on a sandbar. I can’t do the landing.’ And he said, ‘Oh . . . what are you gonna do?’” On the spot, Koepp reshaped the scene so that the captain of the ship refuses to go further upriver, spooked by stories of fishermen disappearing near the island: “I kind of rewrote it on the boat as we were all sitting there.”

JURASSIC PARK 3′

As mentioned, ‘Jurassic Park 3’ never had a behind-the-scenes book before; so that automatically gives this book a major bonus point. While some stories and quotes are lifted directly from other sources over the years (more on that later), to finally have a compilation of the film’s history is praise alone. Unlike the old DVD bonus features, the book takes a more honest look at the film’s troubled history involving its script. In fact, David Lowery recounts how there was even a contest involved with coming up with the film’s opening sequence:

They had a contest: Who could come up with the best opening? We all pitched some version. Nobody won the contest, which was kind of a bummer.”

The compilation of information is joined by a myriad of artwork, both new and old, which is all incredible to see finally cobbled together.

FOCUS ON SCRIPTS

While touched upon in the prior books made for ‘Jurassic Park’ and ‘The Lost World’, this time there is a greater focus on the scriptwriting process of the film. David Koepp usually chimes in with commentary on his drafts, making the process that much more interesting to delve into. Several different drafts, in different stages, get summarized in this book for all three films, although there is one omission that is a bit puzzling (more on that later, as well).

THE INSERTS

One of the biggest standouts for the book are its various inserts, which is a staple of Insight Editions books. There are some replica prop designs throughout that are fun (but with some issues, that you will see below), beautiful character design illustrations for ‘The Lost World’, various selections of never-before-seen storyboards, a blueprint, and a lot more.

WHAT’S NOT SO GOOD?

THE INSERTS

The inserts are often held with an adhesive that will unfortunately leave a permanent stain on some items, whether they are removed or not.

INACCURACIES

Unfortunately, this book has inaccuracies. Some leeway must be given with the nearly 3 decades since the original film came out, for example, but there are some errors that easily would have been spotted by a fan if seen in advance. For example, it is mentioned that “Hasbro brought its relationship with Jurassic Park to an end in 2005“, which is not accurate at all. ‘Jurassic Park’ toys from the company continued in 2006, 2009, and 2013. Let alone 2015, when it took on the toys for ‘Jurassic World’ (though to be fair, one could say that is no longer ‘Jurassic Park’). Another flub is that the Stegosaurus animatronic in ‘The Lost World’ is completely out of the film when it can be seen, for multiple shots, in a cage during Sarah and Nick’s sneaking into the Hunter Camp. While it is easy for a writer unfamiliar to the franchise to make these kinds of mistakes, even with research, perhaps it should have been looked at further by people who could have averted this kind of misinformation.

OMISSIONS

While editing a book always involves “cutting the fat” out of its diet, I feel like some things should have been adapted that weren’t. For example, the biggest portion of new artwork comes mostly from John Bell and David Lowery: something NO ONE is complaining about seeing! But a countless number of artists worked on all three films, and it would have been nice to see more variety from some of the lesser-presented talent. There are also some surprising artwork omissions compared to the original books, such as no art at all for the omitted river sequence of ‘Jurassic Park’. Having key sequences like that from the film’s history not even present this time, when it was before, takes the word “ultimate” out of the equation. So don’t you dare throw away your old copies of the “Making Of” books!

This may feel personal, but I am also surprised that the widely documented (and even performed) script arranged by Rick Carter, ‘Jurassic Park”s Production Designer, which featured many storyboards as seen here, was not even brought up. While it may have been obscure or not even referenced in their files, it would have easily shown up online at the time the book was being worked on. Which brings us to…

YOU HAVE THE INTERNET… USE IT

While there is definitely new information in this book, due to whatever access they did have with people and places, it still doesn’t feel like they took full advantage of all opportunities at their disposal. Fan sites that have been around for years could have been courted with the wealth of additional materials they have procured if it wasn’t immediately available to them (many with images in high definition). It has also been known that special collections house materials from the films that could have been accessed for this book. An internet search would have likely picked up on these details easily.

Jurassic Outpost is quoted in this book numerous times for our Shelly Johnson interview, for example. It is clear they were aware of at least some parts of our site… yet we were never contacted. Had we been, and if they had seen our additional articles and interviews, they could have been greatly assisted. While we appreciate being referenced in the book, we were not fully utilized… and to their disadvantage.

THE COVER

The cover features a beautiful illustration by David J. Negrón that was made for the film during pre-production, featuring Grant and the kids being chased by the Tyrannosaurus Rex. It’s a striking image, and easy to see why it was used for the cover. Unfortunately, there is something very WRONG with it. The faces and even the bodies of the three humans have been photoshopped to resemble their film counterparts.

The REAL illustration features how the characters were conceived based on scripts at the time, and gave Grant the likeness of Harrison Ford due to a request that Spielberg made… which is even mentioned in this book:

Spielberg had considered [Harrison] Ford, his Indiana Jones, for the role of Grant. “I had a concept painting made featuring Grant with Timmy and Lex running toward camera, the T. rex in hot pursuit,” he says. Mulling over the possibility of casting his longtime leading man, he asked the artist to paint in Ford’s face and sent it to the actor with a copy of the script. “I know he read the script and he saw the picture,” recalls Spielberg. “And he just said . . . at this point in his life and career, this wasn’t his cup of tea.”

Now, from a marketing perspective it makes sense to perhaps touch up the image to make the characters resemble as they do in the film to better sell their product. However, the big problem here is that the same illustration is featured later in the book… in the same photoshopped form. Worst of all, it credits David J. Negrón only, and has no mention of the alterations or who did them. While it is POSSIBLE David had been contacted to do it himself, this seems rather unlikely. What we have here then is a case of art being misrepresented, and it’s a big issue. It’s like painting a smile on the Mona Lisa.

Also, why not just use another image for the cover that didn’t require any photoshop at all?

IT’S JUST NOT “ULTIMATE”

When it comes down to it, it’s hard to call this book “The Ultimate Visual History” when it isn’t. Is it a beautiful book, loaded with wonderful imagery and with plenty of details and goodies? Yes, it certainly is. Will many fans love it? Definitely. But the criticisms must be pointed out, because if they are not, these kinds of things will just keep happening. Inaccuracies can become facts, omissions can become lost to time, and not taking advantage of materials easily at your disposal is a detriment to the fans for a product like this. This book is good, but it isn’t great; which is truly unfortunate. It comes with a mild recommendation, if you can afford it at its current price point.

If anyone involved with this book sees this article, please don’t take it personally. We are passionate fans who are just passionate about these kinds of products. The Insight Editions Back To The Future book had a revised version; perhaps the same can be done for ‘Jurassic Park’? I hope it happens so these issues can be resolved, at least to some degree.

While we did NOT quite endorse this book, what do you think? If you agree, comment below. If not, don’t bother. Only joking!

The Noble Collection Releases 3 Jurassic Park Dinosaur Figures With Scenic Bases!

Get ready for a set of cool new Nublar figures, thanks to The Noble Collection!

Available now from their website, you can adorn your home with 3 different dinosaur figures from Jurassic Park. Each detailed figure is approx. 7 inches tall and is removeable from a base inspired by a key scene featuring the dinosaur.

First, we have a Dilophosaurus! Frill up, mouth open, ready to spit at our favorite saboteur! Her base is sculpted to resemble the watery, muddy hill that Dennis Nedry crashes onto. While we don’t see the Barbasol can anywhere, the Dilophosaurus clearly makes a beautiful but deadly addition to your collection!

Next, we have a pair of Velociraptors! They are rummaging through a base that resembles the kitchen Tim and Lex were hiding in: complete with a table, pots, pans, and spoons! This terrifying sequence is now finally brought to miniature life! Maybe you’ll include it in your kitchen?

Last, but certainly not least, we have the mighty Tyrannosaurus Rex! Standing in a Visitor Center rotunda base, she is roaring in her classic, victorious pose! The “When Dinosaurs Ruled The Earth” banner is shown falling in front of her during this dramatic scene. The sculpt of the Rex is so detailed that they even included the freshly-produced wounds near her neck, made by the Velociraptors! While Dr. Grant may not have endorsed the park after this scene, we certainly endorse this figure!

As you can see in the image from the Noble Collection catalog above (thanks to jurassic_version4.4), they even look great left in their packaging! Each of these wonderful figures are $35, plus shipping (however they do offer free U.S. domestic shipping if you get all 3, currently!). At the time of this article, they have a shipping estimate of March 2022. I’ve got my credit card standing by in Choteau!

The Noble Collection has long been a maker of quality products based on some of our favorite franchises like Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, and even Jumanji. They previously produced a unique Jurassic Park Chess Set (showcased by us below), and we hope they continue to create more products for eager fans like us! Now, we just hope there’ll be a coupon day, or something…

We love these figures, but why would we care what WE think? We want to know what YOU think! Let us know in the comments below!