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.
  • Hey, It's That Guy!:
  • 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.
  • 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.
    • Going off that, the Jurassic Park Chaos Effect toyline, which featured a line of strange mutant dinosaur hybrids, was 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.
  • 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:

  • Actor Allusion: When describing Sam Neill's character, Dr. Grant, the jefe of the Mano de Dios mine says that "you'll never get him out of Montana". Neill's character in The Hunt for Red October wanted to move to Montana after defecting to the United States.
  • Adult Fear: Lex and Tim's actors were picked because while watching hundreds of audition tapes, after dozing off Spielberg's wife jumped up when she heard Lex's actress scream, and thought one of her own children was in danger. Her husband was convinced they'd make an impact on the audience.
  • AFIS 100 Years 100 Thrills: #35
  • Alternate DVD Commentary: There's a RiffTrax for the first movie featuring "Weird Al" Yankovic. This also doubles as a Shout-Out to Weird Al's "MacArthur Park" Filk Song parody, "Jurassic Park".
  • Awesome, Dear Boy: According to IMDB, Samuel L. Jackson and Wayne Knight signed on to the film because they liked the idea of playing characters who get eaten alive by dinosaurs. Unfortunately though, both actors were disappointed that their characters' deaths were not shown in the finished film. Knight's character Nedry's death doesn't happen directly on-camera, and the scene where Jackson's character Arnold gets killed was cut out of the film.
  • Creator In-Joke: "You're out of a job", "Don't you mean extinct?" was originally an exchange between Spielberg and Phil Tippett, after seeing an ILM cinematic proving that Tippet's go-motion dinos wouldn't be necessary (Tippett was still kept as an advisor).
  • Fake American: Grant is played by New Zealand actor Sam Neil.
  • Fake Scot: John Hammond is played by English actor Richard Attenborough.
  • Genius Bonus: Timmy says that he saw one program at the "Omni," a reference to the Omni Theater at the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, which shows various made-for-museum films about dinosaurs and other science subjects.
    • Actually, he says "I saw this thing in Omni, referring to Omni Magazine.
  • RiffTrax: See alternate commentary, above.
  • Playing Against Type: The chief engineer of Jurassic Park was one of Samuel L. Jackson's earlier roles, before he became known as the Memetic Badass he is today from films like Pulp Fiction and The Avengers. It can be a little odd for a viewer used to his other roles to see Mr. Muthaf***in Snakes play a nerdy computer programmer.
  • Star-Making Role: Jeff Goldblum wasn't exactly unknown before this film, having starred in hits like The Right Stuff and The Fly, but this is the one that made him a household name.
  • Throw It In: While ILM's artists jumped off plastic tubes to give footage reference for the Gallimimus leaping over a fallen tree, one ended crashing to the ground. As a result, one of the dinos falls on the scene too, as the animators felt that "If it happened to Ty, it would likely have happened in the wild."
  • What Could Have Been: Gwyneth Paltrow and Helen Hunt auditioned for the role as Dr. Sattler.

The Pinball Game: