Trivia / Jurassic Park

Works with their own Trivia pages:

The Franchise in general:

  • Dueling Movies: With Carnosaur and Raptor. Everyone remembers them... right?!
    Roger Ebert: (on The Critic, to Gene Siskel) You liked Carnosaur 2!
  • Fan Nickname: "Clever Girl" for the lead Velociraptor. The reason should be obvious.
  • Image Source: This franchise provides the page images for:
  • Money-Making Shot: The iconic Tyrannosaur escapes the fence and roars scene.
  • The Red Stapler: Demand for Amber, and all dinosaur related toys, books and products.
  • Refitted for Sequel: Sort of. When they made video games based off the movies, and needed to stretch them out, they mined each film's respective book; the first SNES game is in many ways more based on the book than the film.
    • Then there's the fact that a couple of scenes from the second film (the vacationing family at the beginning and the T. rex sticking its tongue through the waterfall) were originally from the first book.
      • This is common throughout the film franchise, with unused concepts from both earlier drafts of the script and the original books going into each of the sequels: an early scene with the daughter of an American family on vacation being attacked by a compy in the first book is reworked as a the daughter of a British family on vacation being attacked by a whole BUNCH of compys; the Tyrannosaurus attacking Grant and the kids on a boat in the first book was reworked into the Spinosaurus attacking Grant and the Kirbys in Jurassic Park ///; and a dropped concept of Pteranodons attacking a helicopter that was considered for the endings of both The Lost World and Jurassic Park /// finally made it to film in Jurassic World, though near the end of the second act instead of the third.
  • Science Marches On: A lot of the incorrectness is due to this. It was what was believed to be true in 1992.
    • Notably, we now know that Velociraptor had feathers and possessed other avian characteristics. (This was sort of addressed in the third film by giving them weird looking little feather "mohawks.")
    • As the half-life of DNA was recently established, we now know for a fact that even under ideal preservation conditions, DNA cannot survive longer than a couple million years. In this instance, there could be some overlap with Artistic License – Biology, as even in 1992 the concept of Mesozoic DNA persisting to the present day might well have been considered scientifically dubious.
    • The dinosaurs are all scaly, whereas recent science indicates many should be feathered. In addition, the size and proportions of the Velociraptors, are closer to that of Deinonychus than Velociraptor, due to the belief at the time that species currently classified as Deinonychus were thought to be in the Velociraptor genus.
    • All the dinosaurs are portrayed with pronated hands, with the palms facing the chest. It is now known that this position was impossible and attempting to put their hands in such a position would have broken their bones. They are now believed to have held their hands with the palms facing each other like they're preparing to clap.
    • The Cearadactylus are depicted as scrawny, delicate creatures with fragile looking wings and an awkward, clumsy gait on the ground. Later discoveries suggest that all pterosaurs were not only much sturdier than they looked, but also scarily competent at ground movement (ornithocheirids like Cearadactylus are even believed to have been able to hop on all fours). Commendably, they're also depicted as being covered in fur.
    • Since they're genetically created, however, it may get a free pass; the dinosaurs were created according to specifications that were thought to be accurate at the time.
    • There's an in-universe example near the start of the book, when Grant spots a herd of apatasaurs and muses that they are more commonly known by the 1930s misnomer "brontosaurs".
  • Stan Winston: The genius responsible for the live-action dinosaurs when the computer guys are taking a break.
  • Torch the Franchise and Run: A bit of a preemptive example, but the original Jurassic Park novel was never meant to have a sequel, so Crichton had Isla Nublar firebombed, killing all of the dinosaurs on it. That didn't stop Spielberg from convincing him to write a sequel, anyways.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • Richard Donner, Tim Burton and Joe Dante were all considered to direct when studios had a bidding war for the material (Donner would have made the film for Columbia Pictures, Burton at Warner Bros. and Dante at 20th Century Fox). James Cameron also stated the rights were bought hours before his bid. In the end, Universal and Spielberg won out since Spielberg was Crichton's first choice to direct (and the studio used the upcoming Schindler's List, which Spielberg had been lobbying to direct, as incentive). But imagine how dark Burton's and Dante's versions would have been. (Cameron stated his version would be much more violent, but agreed that wouldn't exactly be better as "Dinosaurs are for 8-year-olds. We can all enjoy it, too, but kids get dinosaurs and they should not have been excluded for that").
    • William Hurt, Harrison Ford, and Richard Dreyfuss were all offered the part of Alan Grant. Julie Binochet and Robin Wright were both considered for the part of Ellie Satler. Sean Connery was offered the role of John Hammond. And Brian Cox auditioned for the part of Robert Muldoon.
    • Spielberg changed the endings of the first two films in the middle of filming. On the first, the film was supposed to end with the dinosaur fossils in the visitors' center falling on the raptors and crushing them. Would've been a tad anti-climatic. Spielberg realised that the audiences would never forgive him if he didn't bring back the T. rex for one last heroic moment, and so he did. With The Lost World, it was supposed to end with a Pteranadon assault on a helicopter. Spielberg had proposed putting a T. rex in San Diego early on, but was more or less ignored, until he insisted that it was the ending that would be filmed. It is quite safe to say that both endings that found themselves in the movie are better than the planned ones.
    • Universal's animation division created a pitchfilm for a possible animated series around 1995; it used a lot of then-state of the art CGI; the series never got off the ground. You can see it here. Since then, artist William Stout has revealed concept art for the proposed series- which didn't happen because Spielberg was burnt out from all the merch the movie had spawned.
    • Going off that, the Jurassic Park Chaos Effect toyline, which featured a line of strange mutant dinosaur hybrids, was also originally supposed to tie in with an animated series, but it never got off the ground. Exactly why it was canned is a matter of debate. Some suggest Spielberg/Crichton did not like the concept when it was pitched and canned it. Another report suggests that Speilberg was in a bad mood the day it was to be pitched to him and canned it before even learning what it was about.
    • It was recently revealed by Kathleen Kennedy that the Tyrannosaurus in the first film was originally going to die about halfway through the movie. When they got to the point that they were going to film that scene, Spielberg decided against it.
  • Word of God: Malcolm was supposed to be dead at the end of the first novel. Since he survived in the movie and became a popular character, Crichton decided to include him in the second novel. The Never Saw The Body aspect merely let him get away with it.

The First Novel:

The First Film:

The Pinball Game:


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