A Jurassic World Info-Dump

A few days ago, Slashfilm visited the set of Jurassic World and managed to take back a goldmine of information. I have to take this apart bit-by-bit because there’s no possible way that I, you or anyone else could handle all this awesomeness at once.

Unlike the real Sea World, there are no protesters decrying the park’s administration, as it is believed they are not mistreating the animals.

Really? Not one single person would have any reason to protest this?

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Not one?
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Nobody?
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No one on the face of the earth?
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Not a single living soul?

I guess people think it’s okay if they’re not mistreating the animals. It’s not like there’s a history of people dying in these situations or anything.

Producer Frank Marshall told us that Universal Studios theme park is developing stuff that should be current with the movie when it’s finally released. The theme park was really curious about what they were doing; Marshall thinks they might be making a ride version of the gyrosphere for one of the theme parks as the theme park guys were very excited when they saw them on set.

AWW YEAH! It’s not official, but I want a Jurassic Park expansion so badly I’ll take it. A Gyrosphere ride would be truly incredible; it might just be a motion-simulation ride a la the Hogwarts train at Islands of Adventure, but a valley filled with animatronic dinosaurs would be amazing. I don’t even care if nothing exciting happens, just let me cruise around with robot stegosaurs.

Bryce Dallas Howard’s character Claire Dearing is the operations manager of the park. She sees the dinosaurs as assets and “she is sort of Malcolm’s worst nightmare. Like, you stood on the shoulders of the giants and now you just want to sell it.”

I just included this because I pathetically cling to any Malcolm reference I’m thrown. Actually, I feel like if Malcolm met Claire, he’d spend 10% of their meeting lecturing her and the rest of the time relentlessly flirting.

Claire is a workaholic. She’s not here to make friends or have a good time, she is completely focused on her job. She is very type-A but not really connected to her real humanity. When she took the job she was inspired, but she has lost the awe for the park as she’s been there for eight years. She’s described as akin to an amazing hotel manager in Dubai.

Nothing we haven’t heard before or that hasn’t been inferred, but the more character development the better. It’s going to be cool watching her go from this to full Molly Weasley when the kids are in danger.

Her sister, while mediating her divorce, has sent them to be with Claire in Jurassic World. The boys meet their aunt, who is very busy and gives them a bunch of fast passes and sends them off.

Nothing to see here folks, just more absentee parents just like every other movie in this franchise, move along now.

Unlike the other sequels, Jurassic World is aiming to feature the wonder and joy of the original for the first 45 minutes before it shoots you into terror.

If this is done successfully, I’m really glad it’s happening. This franchise could use a heck of a lot more wonder, and there’s definitely a lot of potential for it in this movie.

In the scene we saw being filmed, Johnson’s character is wearing one of the old Jurassic Park t-shirts from the original park gift shop, which he bought for $150 off eBay. Mint condition t-shirts apparently go for upwards of $300.

First of all, wow, that’s kind of an oddly specific detail to include. Second, I’m noticing a bit of a continuity issue here. According to the Masrani site, the only people anywhere near the first park after the events of the first movie were InGen builders in 1994; since no one believed Malcolm’s story until after he got back from Sorna, nobody would even know there was a first park until at least 1997, so no one would go there. Even then, if any investigative journalists or local authorities managed to get past the top-secret InGen park building project already stationed on the island, who would go into the gift shops and grab merchandise when there were raptor paddocks and wild dinosaurs to look at? Who would capitalize on something that everyone knew was a disaster by selling T-shirts? And wouldn’t the T-shirts be in pretty bad condition from rotting in the jungle for 4 years anyway? I realize this is pretty nitpicky, but it really bugs me.

Lowery serves as the voice of the audience on screen. He is concerned about the irresponsibility of the parks creators and the evolution of the capitalistic measures adopted by the park. The character is based off a screenwriter friend who is skeptical. Lowery has an story arc which hopefully will please audiences. His tech character doesn’t get to leave the Jurassic World control center. Johnson started shooting the same day Chris Pratt wrapped production.

Well, at least the movie has a way of addressing our concerns and questions. They had to talk about the central problem that everyone has been wondering about in some way or another, and I’m glad they’re doing it in a way that works and doesn’t just seem like “HERE IS EXPOSITION”. And the skeptical guy in glasses who talks about how the park is irresponsible is based off of a screenwriter friend. Right. Of course.

Lowery is a fan of the original park and thinks its dumb that they have made a sequel. In one take the character says “The first park was legit, it didn’t need genetic hybrids, it was real.” Claire says the t-shirt is in poor taste since people died at that park.

Dude, it kind of was a disaster that ended quite a few lives and ruined others. That’s not something people are typically fans of. Again, this strikes me as a little bit of a continuity error; in this universe, I was under the impression that to the general public, Jurassic Park was a disastrous incident that resulted from a company’s criminal neglect. I would think that worshiping the original park in this universe would be like someone else in this universe glamorizing the San Diego Incident or something. I thought people generally thought of Jurassic Park as something horrible that happened, not a cool idea that happened not to work out. But I guess I was wrong.

Lowery complains about park’s corporate sponsorship, saying why don’t they just start allowing the corporations to name the dinosaurs: “Pepsi-saurus”

Nah, people would only visit that exhibit when the Cokeasaurus one was closed.

There’s a couple of new photos of Claire and Lowery:

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He’s said this before, but I think this character was actually based on Dinosaur Guy.

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In the scene, Jake Johnson’s character lists off some statistics about the day at the park: 6 kids are in lost in found, 28 people got heat stroke, and a kid tried to feed a triceratops ice cream.

The only thing funnier to imagine here than a little kid sweetly trying to share their ice cream with their favorite dinosaur is a baby trike enthusiastically licking up the ice cream instead, and then following the kid around and nuzzling them for more.

Doctor Wu has been asked to ramp up one new genetically-engineered species. He has something going on that people don’t know about. At the back of his office a secret door leads to more equipment and a ton of aquarium tanks filled with rare reptiles which he uses to sequence DNA. They had a two-headed snake and albino snake in some of the cages. Pipes cover us above. The room is darker, concrete, less futuristic looking but more real and functional. There is a refrigerator unit with trays of DNA sample tubes. There are four circular tubes with spines in a clear fluid. The hidden genetics lab is in a back room so that tourists won’t see it when touring the facility.

Ooh, Wu has a mad scientist lab! I really want to see this set, it sounds fascinating. I’m guessing this is where that shot of a spine in the first trailer came from. Also, is the “thing going on that people don’t know about” the I. rex or… something more sinister?

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Maybe if I chant in Latin long enough it will go away.

Some people on JPL have speculated that the project referenced here is the Stegoceratops, or that Stego is the eaten sibling referenced in the Super Bowl trailer. Hasbro said that it was just a toy, but that may have been spread as deliberate misinformation in order to make the animal’s appearance in the movie more of a surprise. This is all we have to go on at the moment, but hopefully more details will come to light soon.

We visited another set which is the remains of the old visitors center from the original Jurassic Park. This was probably the coolest set we saw as it felt like I was stepping into the same location from the first film. Years have gone by, and the visitors set has been completely abandoned. Greenery has completely taken over, and the bones of the T-Rex lay on the floor as do the dirty scraps of the banner, which we were told play into this story. Vines are growing around a piece of the scaffolding we saw in the first film. The stairs are overgrown with tree branches, vines and grass. The iconic doors are rusted and vines have taken over the archway entrance. The old visitors center is located in a part of the park which has dinosaurs roaming free. The boys stumble upon this location somewhere in the middle of the movie.

Aaaaaand we’re all gonna cry. I can’t wait to see this even more than Wu’s lab. And I wonder how the banner and the bones will play into the story? Gray strikes me as the kind of kid who’d stick a T. rex bone in his pocket, so maybe that’s why. Or they’ll try to climb up the banner to escape something, maybe?

The dinosaurs in Jurassic World will be created using performance capture. Humans are playing the T-rex dinos.

Wait, so humans are playing the T. rex? And does this mean there’s more than one rex?! Maybe the kids run into a wild rex when they’re in the restricted area; I can’t see any other reason for another T. rex to be in the story at all. And if there’s no T. rex animatronic, then yeah, I can kind of see why they’d do something like this to enhance the CGI.

They have actors on set who wear lifesize models of the dinosaur heads for the actors to respond to on set.

I take back what I said about the cardboard heads. This is hilarious.

One of the themes in the movie is that all of the dinosaurs are organic and the synthetic must die.

Hmmm. Considering the dinosaurs are all genetically engineered to some degree, what exactly constitutes a synthetic dinosaur? Does this refer to the I. rex, and are they really going to tell us that the other dinosaurs should attack the I. rex or something because it’s less “organic”? Houston, we have an appeal-to-nature fallacy.

The dinosaurs in Jurassic World can mate in the wild but all of the dinosaurs are monitored and tracked at all times. Even the surviving dinosaurs in the closed off section of the island have microchips and are tracked.

Okay, I can see why they’d do this, but why would they bother doing capture-and-release? Why even keep wild dinosaurs around at all if they won’t bring in profits and they’d actually serve as a liability? If I were a corporate executive in this movie with the resources to track down and catch wild dinosaurs, I’d just go ahead and get them off the island while I had them. I’d send them to zoos or labs or something; visitors would never see them anyway. And some people have said that this confirms that the park managers have gotten the sex-change problem under control. Yeah, that was kind of a major bug, it was probably pretty useful to have that fixed.

Jurassic World will not feature weaponized dinosaurs from the infamous abandoned Jurassic Park 4 script.

Well, not T. rexes with lasers or anything, but a trained raptor attack squad sounds a lot like weaponized dinosausr to me.

Spielberg loved the idea of the Mosasaurus eating the shark but suggested that when the animal grabs the shark that the whole bleacher section submerge underwater using a hydraulic system so that the audience will be able to see the Mosasaurus feeding underwater.

Now that is one good idea. Maybe that’s what we saw in this scene:

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On an unrelated note, the whole Mosasaur tank situation is starting to remind me a lot of a Sarlacc pit. You know, a big toothy monster who can’t leave its hole but that’ll snatch up anything that goes near it.

Steven Spielberg was very hands-on in the development of the project, but now that production is in full gear, he is fairly hands-off. Spielberg watches the dailies every day but has said he wants Trevorrow to make his own movie.

No! Daddy, don’t leave us! You can’t go, Daddy!

That’s the end of that article. Ain’t It Cool also did a set visit and it’s mostly the same thing, but there are a few other details.

…the sides had live feeds from throughout the park. Some of it was tourists queuing (which we were told was actual footage shot at Universal Orlando and run on a loop)

If any of you have been to Universal Orlando recently, you might want to consider watching those camera feeds in the control room reeeeeeallly closely. You just might get a surprise.

The scene had Bryce Dallas Howard’s character, Claire, come in and, sipping coffee like a true boss, being brought up to date on the goings on.

Ugh, like, don’t even talk to Claire until she’s had her morning coffee, you know what I mean?

The set up for this scene allowed for Jake Johnson to use his mumblecore training to be conversational and a little off the cuff.

A mumbling, nerdy guy in glasses who talks about the ethics of the park. Yeah, they’re not fooling anybody.

I get the feeling that aside from the Walt Disneyification of John Hammond this new attempt at the park is trying to avoid all branding with that incident.

And you know what? I can kind of see why.

Lowery bites back, though. He’s a bit of a Park hipster.

There’s nothing I can add to this. Jurassic. Park. hipsters.

Trevorrow said that [T. rex] looks leaner and meaner and that he kind of modeled the aging of her face on Burt Lancaster

No complaints from me. This is hilarious.

The new scene has the same players, but they’re reacting to something bad. I think it was the realization that the Indominus Rex has removed its tracking chip (something we see in the latest trailer). “I’m telling you she’s where she’s always been…” but then they see her on a security camera feed somewhere else and realize that she is indeed where she shouldn’t be. Panic sets in, they start yelling “Get the out of there now!” and “Evacuate the containment area!”

This makes sense, I’m sure, but I do wonder how this fits in with the latest clip. Does I. rex get out when she chases Owen– in which case everyone in the control room is already watching and therefore would already know– or does she just claw out her implant and waltz out of her habitat? I’m sure it’ll make more sense in context.

So we’ve just learned some details that fill in a few gaps and flesh out the world-building. I love this, especially the confirmation that we’ll get to spend time in the ruins of the old park and the Universal ride idea. The whole T-shirt thing still bugs me a little, but in the grand scheme of things it probably won’t matter; hey, maybe Lowery just studied accounts of the old park a lot and decided the idea of it was cool. As always, I’m getting more and more excited for this awesome movie.

Read the Slashfilm article (I really recommend you read the whole thing, it’s very interesting) here: http://www.slashfilm.com/jurassic-world-set-visit/

The Ain’t It Cool article: http://www.aintitcool.com/node/71296

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10 thoughts on “A Jurassic World Info-Dump

  1. In that pic with Jake Johnson’s character, I literally have that green Pachycephalosaurus toy in my room right now. It’s kind of scary.
    I totally get you’re complaints about Lowry wearing the JP T shirt, but I am at least glad that they acknowledge it’s in bad taste in-universe.

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  2. I totally agree with your comment about the amusement park thing; I’m personally hoping they’ll do a sort of Jurassic World version of “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter” and make an authentic looking version of the park with lifelike animatronics and whatnot :3
    It might be wishful thinking, but it could happen if the movie makes enough money (and it likely will, since Chris Pratt’s in it)!

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