You may remember when the RV from The Lost World: Jurassic Park was auctioned off a while back. These are the guys who are restoring it to glory.

T-Rex Family by sstb25

The Lost World: Jurassic Park village models

For The Lost World: Jurassic Park, an extensive raptor sequence including a chase through the abandoned worker village was planned for the third act, but was cut back in favor of the San Diego ending. Scale models of the entire village were designed and created though, and model maker Greg Aronowitz details the process (as well as his experience working with Steven Spielberg on other films, as well) on his blog.

Thanks fromdirectorstevenspielberg for the original post.

weirdunicorn:

Jurassic Park Velociraptors through the first three movies.

Top Row: Jurassic Park

Middle Row: The Lost World, Jurassic Park

Bottom Row: Jurassic Park III

dinosaursandotherawesomestuff:

John Hammond and his collection of Doug Henderson artwork (featuring Jeff Goldblum’s arm).

5 movies to hold you over until Jurassic World

This week marks what would have been the original release date for Jurassic World. But after a series of re-writes and a bold new vision from director Colin Trevorrow, Universal decided last year to push the release back to 2015 to allow a proper timeline for production. The good news: we’ll be getting a Jurassic World that is polished and complete instead of rushed and unfinished. The bad news: We have to wait another year to see it.

If you just can’t wait that long to see the new Jurassic Park, here are five movies in the spirit of the Jurassic Park films, recommended to hold you over.


5. King Kong (1933/2005)

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Premise: A filmmaker looking for the next big thing finds it on an uncharted island ruled by dinosaurs and a giant ape worshipped by the natives as Kong.

The Jurassic Park connection: The original King Kong is a masterpiece that has inspired countless directors, writers, and visual effects artists. Steven Spielberg is not shy about Kong's influence: The famous Jurassic Park gate is modeled directly off the gate in Kong (prompting Jeff Goldblum’s Malcolm to snark, “What have they got in there? King Kong?”). The ship bringing the T. rex to San Diego in The Lost World: Jurassic Park is the S.S. Venture — the same name of the ship that brings the giant ape back to New York in Kong. Even little things, like the T. rex in Lost World nonchalantly scratching its head, are homages to King Kong.

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There is also a lot of Kong’s Carl Denham in Jurassic’s John Hammond. Both men are in pursuit of the ultimate ticket in entertainment, stopping at nothing to achieve their dream even as the people around them are destroyed by prehistoric animals.

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Peter Jackson’s 2005 remake of King Kong retains a lot of what made the original great, with the added bonus of modern CGI dinosaur effects that really make it feel akin to Jurassic Park.


4. The Valley of Gwangi
(1969)

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Premise: Cowboys vs dinosaurs in this western about a lost valley where prehistoric animals still thrive, and the entertainer who wants to exploit it for fame.

The Jurassic Park connection: Like King Kong before it and Jurassic Park after it, The Valley of Gwangi at its heart is a warning to those who exploit nature for entertainment. The titular Gwangi (a large allosaurus) is captured and taken from its home in the forbidden valley to be a spectacle in a Mexican circus, in much the same way The Lost World: Jurassic Park’s T. rex is captured and brought to San Diego to be an amusement park attraction. If you’re at all familiar with these kinds of movies, you know exactly what happens next: Gwangi doesn’t like being captured, Gwangi breaks free of its restraints, people run and scream. The shot in Jurassic Park III of the characters closing a set of large steel doors on the approaching spinosaurus can only be a reference to Valley of Gwangi, in which a large set of cathedral doors are closed on the approaching allosaurus in the same way.

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The stop-motion effects in Gwangi are Ray Harryhausen at his best — the dinosaur roping sequence in particular. In an age of CGI and digital touch-ups, it’s easy to dismiss the effort and planning that must have went into compositing a stop-motion dinosaur with real actors riding real horses, without the help of modern editing and effects tools.


3. Carnosaur (1993)

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Premise: A biotech company genetically engineers some dinosaurs, which get loose and reek havoc.

The Jurassic Park connection: Where to even begin? Producer Roger Corman made no secret of the fact that Carnosaur was his darker, gorier, low-budget take on Jurassic Park. Rushed into theaters the week before Jurassic’s theatrical release, Carnosaur is very loosely based on a novel by Harry Adam Knight (which is actually more similar to Jurassic than the movie ended up being). Diane Ladd (the mother of Jurassic star Laura Dern, incidentally) stars as a scientist intent on wiping out the human species and reviving dinosaurs to regain their place as rulers of the earth. “It would make a great theme park,” a character quips.

Like Jurassic Park, the dinosaur stars in Carnosaur are a tyrannosaurus and raptors (deinonychus specifically, although more JP-inspired “raptors” took over in Carnosaur’s sequels — yes, there are sequels). The dinosaur effects are accomplished using a combination of miniatures, suits, and full-size puppets. The results range from passable to laughable, but the movie still packs a scary punch.

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Jurassic Park ushered in the age of movies using genetic engineering as a plot device to bring dinosaurs and human characters together. Prior movies relied on time travel, hidden lost worlds, or flat-out throwing paleontological fact to the wind and putting dinosaurs and ancient people as contemporaries. Once the biotech angle struck a chord with audiences, it became the go-to plot for numerous dinosaur movies to follows. Carnosaur gets the distinction of being among the first, but there are many others, such as…


2. Age of Dinosaurs (2013)

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Premise: A biotech company genetically engineers some dinosaurs, which get loose and reek havoc.

The Jurassic Park connection: By now, low budget television movies with bad CGI creatures are about a dime a dozen. Age of Dinosaurs is not a great movie by any stretch, but within this subset it is better than most. The plot involves a biotech firm creating living dinosaurs and showing them off to raise corporate awareness and funds for disease research. An aim not devoid of merit, but the dinosaurs predictably break free and run amok in Los Angeles.

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Jurassic Park fans will get a kick out of seeing favorites such as ceratosaurus and carnotaurus in all their scaly, bunny-handed glory. There are many references to shots in Jurassic Park, including a character eluding a small carnotaurus in a sequence directly ripped from Jurassic Park’s kitchen scene. At one point the camera pans over a lab sample labeled “Dodgson” and dated from June 1993, directly linking it to Jurassic Park. From start to finish, Age of Dinosaurs is one big, dumb, over-the-top Jurassic Park homage.

Of course, if you really need your Jurassic Park fix, you can always just stick to the original…


1. Jurassic Park / The Lost World / Jurassic Park III

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Yes, the original Jurassic Park is not going anywhere, and still remains the gold standard to which all other dinosaur movies are compared. The sequels aren’t bad, either: although universally agreed to fall short of the original, they offer plenty of excitement, fun, and insight into the Jurassic Park saga. If you’ve previously written off Jurassic Park III or The Lost World: Jurassic Park as simply inferior films, give them another shot.

So rather than lament over the fact that Jurassic World is not coming out this year, celebrate the fact that this week marks both the 21st anniversary of the original Jurassic’s theatrical release, as well as the start of the one-year countdown to the new movie. Fire up some popcorn, dim the lights, and put on a Jurassic Park movie. Or two. Or all three.

Left: Jurassic World director Colin Trevorrow on location in Hawaii last month (pic by slashfilm); Right: Steven Spielberg directing The Lost World: Jurassic Park in 1997.

Left: Jurassic World director Colin Trevorrow on location in Hawaii last month (pic by slashfilm); Right: Steven Spielberg directing The Lost World: Jurassic Park in 1997.

The Lost World: Jurassic Park pinball game art by Sega.

The Lost World: Jurassic Park pinball game art by Sega.

bone-hunter:

Stan Winston

bone-hunter:

Stan Winston