Jurassic Park Trilogy DVD
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    The small, armored dinosaur named in honor of JP and TLW author Michael Crichton is called "Bienosaurus crichtoni". (From: Patrick)
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    Frequently Asked Questions
    Click a question to jump to the answer!
    1. Wow, there's going to be a Jurassic Park 3?!
    2. Neat. When is it coming out?
    3. Is it just called 'Jurassic Park 3'?
    4. When did filming begin?
    5. Who's in it?
    6. How about Jeff Goldblum? Richard Attenborough?
    7. Is Steven Spielberg directing it?
    8. What is Spielberg's involvement in JP3 then?
    9. What was Spielberg's original idea for JP3?
    10. What's that dinosaur on the JP3 logo?
    11. What about the t-rex and the raptors?
    12. Tell me a little about this spinosaurs dude and the spino model they're building.
    13. What is JP3 going to be about? Is it a prequel to TLW?
    14. What problems did the JP3 production face?
    15. Is John Williams doing the musical score for JP3?
    16. That JP3 trailer on the Jurassic Park and Lost World DVD's -- what the hell was that? And when can we expect a real trailer?
    17. Who is doing the special effects for JP3?
    18. What other dinosaurs will be in JP3?
    19. What JP3 video games are in the works?
    20. Will there be JP3 toys?
    21. Will there be a JP3 novel by Crichton?
    22. What was JP3's budget? And how much of that is going to Spielberg? How much to Sam Neill?
    23. How'd JP3 do at the box office?
    24. Too early to be talking about a JP4?
    25. I didn't like the last JP movie, do we really need another?
    26. I have a question that's not on here, what do I do?

    Wow, there's going to be a Jurassic Park 3?!

    Neat. When is it coming out?
      The limited US release date was Wednesday, July 18, 2001. Several films moved out of the way of JP3 months before it opened, including Sony's Final Fantasy, and Jackie Chan's Rush Hour 2, giving that weekend almost exclusively to JP3. The only competition for JP3 was Tim Burton's "Planet of the Apes", which opened the following week. "America's Sweethearts", a romance-comedy starring Juila Roberts, opened the same day as JP3 though was swifty defeated. (See "How'd JP3 do at the box office?" for more info.)

      The DVD of Jurassic Park 3 has been scheduled for release in the US on December 11, 2001, just in time for the holiday season. The disc contains behind-the-scenes interviews, production photos, and more. Fans hoped to hear a commentary by director Joe Johnston, though the commentary track on the DVD features the special effects team, including FX guru Stan Winston.

    Is it just called 'Jurassic Park 3'?
      Yes. Unlike TLW, which went through several variations of "The Lost World" names before settling on "The Lost World: Jurassic Park", since the beginning JP3 has simply been called "Jurassic Park 3" (or "Jurassic Park III", as Universal seems to like using).
    When did filming begin?
      Principle photography began August 30, 2000 on the picturesque island of Oahu on Hawaii. After shooting several days on a military base, filming moved to the island of Kauai, where the JP3 crew shot very near to locations used in the first film. The crew left the islands in late September, moving production to Universal Studios in LA. In October, production shot one day at a local college, and later at a warehouse-type studio in downtown LA. Other than that, filming has been confined recently to Universal Studios in Hollywood and the large "cliff set" built on the backlot there. Production returned to Hawaii a few days in January for additional filming, reportedly re-shooting the finale of the film.

      Filming wrapped on or around January 29th, 2001, making the shoot roughly 105 days long (not counting weekends). According to an early call sheet, the shoot was originally scheduled for a 79 day shoot, which seems to indicate that filming went about a month over.

    Who's in it?
      Besides the dinosaurs? See the cast + crew page for the complete details. The short answer is that Sam Neill is back, reprising his role as Dr. Alan Grant from the first film. In addition, William H. Macy plays a "successful businessman" named Paul Kirby, with Tea Leoni playing his divorced wife, Amanda. Child-actor Trevor Morgan plays "Eric", their son. Laura Dern, who played Ellie Sattler in Jurassic Park, is back as well though she does not make the trek to the island with the rest.
    How about Jeff Goldblum? Richard Attenborough?
      Jeff did not return in JP3. Presumably the script simply didn't call for him, as he seemed to be willing to come back for a third film: "[I'm] looking forward to seeing it," he has been quoted as saying. Lord Richard Attenborough (John Hammond) is likewise not involved in JP3.

      For awhile there was a rumor that a "mysterious character" (possibly one from another movie) would return in the final minutes of JP3, but this turned out to be a fluke -- an unexpected character did appear, but it was no one really important.

    Is Steven Spielberg directing it? What is Spielberg's involvement in JP3 then?
      Spielberg is still reportedly involved to some extent with the JP3 production, and receives a "Executive Producer" title on the film. He has been seen in several behind-the-scenes shots of JP3 filming, though the extent to which he has been on the set is nonetheless questionable. Reportedly the original plot of JP3 was "hatched from an idea by Spielberg", though given all the rewrites and script changes, whether Spielberg really had anything to do with the current script is also questionable.

      By all accounts, Spielberg was very pleased with Joe's work on JP3. "Steven is very happy with what he has seen of Joe Johnston's work in Jurassic Park 3," said a spokesperson for Spielberg.

    What was Spielberg's original idea for JP3?
      Apparently Spileberg's grand vision for JP3 was to concentrate on a group of teenagers who accidentally crash land on the dinosaur-infested island. "It really did look like an episode of 'Friends'!," Joe Johnston would comment later. Reportidly several early drafts of the JP3 script ran with this idea, but most of the original concept was ultimately discarded.
    What's that dinosaur on the JP3 logo? What about the t-rex and the raptors?
      Don't worry, both the t-rex and raptors have parts in Jurassic Park 3. The t-rex, however, certainly has a diminished role, but does lend himself to one of the highlights of the movie, which features a battle between the spinosaurs and the Rex himself.

      The raptors in the film have also been given "subtle changes to their look" -- at least one sports a stylish feathered head crests, hinting at the bird/dinosaur connection. "My favorite new dinosaur [in JP3] is the Velociraptor," said Stan Winston in an interview. "The Velociraptor was in Jurassic Park one, and the Velociraptor was in Lost World, and Velociraptor is back in Jurassic Park III, but in a way, you've never seen it."

    Tell me a little about this spinosaurs dude and the spino model they've built.
      Well in real life, the spinosaurs was an "impressive sized beast" with a unique skull and a fin running down its back. An adult spino could be quite big, actually growing to be larger than the t-rex. It apparently liked to eat fish, but could really take on anyone who got in its way. "It was the dominant predator of its time," says renouned Paleontologist Paul Sereno.

      The animatronic spinosaur Stan Winston Studios has built for the film is likewise impressive. "The t-rex [model] was 9 tons.. [the] spinosaur is 24,000 pounds.. 12 tons of dinosaur.. the biggest creature character ever made for a movie," says Stan Winston. The spino is so big, in fact, that they had to tear open one of the garage doors at Stan Winston Studios to get it out. "Dinosaurs are cheap," Stan has said sarcastically. "It's tearing the building apart that's expensive."

      Winston continues: "The most awesome feature of the spinosaur are it's forearms.. the t-rex has small forearms that don't do a lot.. the spino has huge forearms.. the forearms are virtually the size of a raptor... so huge, massive killing machine, that is connected to a very big dinosaur with a long, nasty snout that is somewhat dragon-esque or alligator-esque in its look."

    What is JP3 going to be about? Is it a prequel to TLW?
      Insiders were pretty tight-lipped about the plot of the third Jurassic Park film, even up until the release of the movie. It could have been that they were instructed not to tell, or because they simply did not know (see the next section about the "problems" during production).

      To summarize, however, JP3 takes place 4 years after the events in The Lost World. Near the start of the film, a young boy (Trevor Morgan) is parasailing near the island (now strictly off-limits, of course), when the line breaks and is stranded. His parents (Tea Leoni and William H. Macy) launch a rescue expedition, but look to Dr. Alan Grant (Sam Neill) for help. Without telling him the real reason they're returning to Isla Sorna, Grant agrees (after a little "persuading") to simply fly over the dinosaur santuary. Of course, nothing in Jurassic Park goes smoothly, and Grant learns they intend to land on the island. Despite Grant's protests, they head in, though the plane is quickly swatted to the ground by JP3's new dino, the spinosaurus.

      Do you really need to know more than that? The film is jam-packed with action ("Action, action. It's very intense," says William H. Macy). "We've got dinosaurs you haven't seen before, and it's action pretty much from the beginning," says Sam Neill. "There's a lot of running in terror."

    What problems did the JP3 production face?
      Like most movie productions, JP3 experienced several setbacks on the set, though perhaps a few more than most. Problems arose right from the start when the script was reportedly still not complete when filming began, and names began to surface of several screenwriters hired to fix the "broken" JP3 screenplay. As the start of filming neared, the production was still negotiating with various actors (Neill apparently refused to sign on until he saw what he believed was a better script), roles still were not cast, and the studio was described as "panicked". Trouble continued through the first few weeks of filming in Hawaii, when it was reported that the head writer was fired, and Neill and Macy were actually re-writing some of the script as they went along. In addition, several accidents put a damper on the production, including one where a crew member almost drowned when a parachute came down on him in the water, and another when a barge of expensive lighting equipment flipped-over, dumping the equipment into a river. William H. Macy would later speak out in public about the production troubles, asking, "Who launched a $100 million ship without a rudder? And who's getting fired for this?" and reporting that filming was going very slowly, "roughly a quarter of a page a day."

      (After his now-infamous comments got national media attention, Macy would later back off his criticisms, saying positive things about JP3 and claiming he was actually talking about a different film. He later told a newspaper he "felt compelled" to write a letter of apology to executive producer Steven Spielberg for the comments, which he said were "taken out of context by a website and reprinted in the press".)

    Is John Williams doing the musical score for JP3?
      No, Williams did not return to compose the music for the third JP film, probably because Spielberg was not directing, as well as the fact he was busy with several projects (including the score to A.I. and Harry Potter). Instead, Williams personally recommended Don Davis, who has worked on various films in the past, first as an orchestrator on dozens of projects, then as composer on movies like The Matrix and House on Haunted Hill, as well as several television series. Williams apparently assisted Davis, providing his sketches and notes on the first two films to the younger composer. "The plan is to use Williams' Jurassic themes extensively," Davis said.

      The soundtrack CD, which was released by Decca records, hit US stores July 10. According to someone who attended a scoring session, Davis' score for JP3 "blows [his] Matrix score away", and was recorded with a 110-piece orchestra and 70-person choir.

      The soundtrack also includes an odd addition to a JP soundtrack -- Randy Newman's 1999 song "Big Hat, No Cattle", which is played in the background near the beginning of the movie. Director Joe Johnston says he chose the song because it "relates perfectly to the hidden agenda of the principals".

    That JP3 trailer on the Jurassic Park and Lost World DVD's -- what the hell was that? And when can we expect a real trailer? Who did the special effects for JP3? What other dinosaurs will be in JP3?
      There are 10 dinosaurs in JP3. They include T-Rex, Velociraptor, Pteranodon (with a 40ft wing span), Brachiosaurus, Ankylosaurus, Triceratops, Spinosaurus, Apatosaurus, Parasaurolophus, Compsognathus (compy), Pachycephalosaurus (pachy), and Pteranodon.
    What JP3 video games are in the works?
      Several JP3 titles were originally announced for several next-generation video game consoles, but it now seems at least two were canceled or delayed: While Japanese game-maker Konami announced it would be working on a game for Microsoft's upcoming X-Box console, named "Jurassic Park X", it presumably has been delayed or canceled. Similarly, a JP3 Playstation 2 in the works by Savage Entertainment, was canceled by the development team in October or November after a dispute over financing with Universal. "Jurassic Parl: Survival" was to be an action/adventure game in the style of Resident Evil or Tomb Raider.

      Konami did release, however, no less than three JP3 games for Nintendo's "Game Boy Advance", and Universal-owned Knowledge Adventure created three (less than stellar) "edutainment" CD-ROM titles for the PC.

      Still in the works is a JP3 Arcade game, also by Konami, which was unveiled at a Japanese video game conference. The title, a high-tech shooting-game in the style of the 1997 TLW Arcade game by Sega, features a sensor which allows the player to actually physically move to avoid dino attacks. No word as to when the game will come to the US, however.

    Will there be JP3 toys? Will there be a JP3 novel by Crichton? What was JP3's budget? And how much of that is going to Spielberg? How much to Sam Neill? How'd JP3 do at the box office?
      While JP3 perhaps didn't do as well as TLW's remarkable opening, certainly made a pretty penny. It raked in $19 million on its first day, making JP3 the second highest Wednesday opening ever, behind "The Phantom Menace". This was far beyond the predictions of many movie insiders, who figured JP3 would make $10 or $11 million its first day. By Sunday, JP3 had $81 million, and an impressive "weekend" gross of $51 million.

      However, like most major releases in the summer of 2000, JP3 could not hold onto its momentum in its second week of release, and was beaten by Tim Burton's "Planet of the Apes". That film did remarkably well its opening week, making $69 million. It too, however, would drop by almost 60% in its second week. Internationally, JP3 opened well, breaking several records and holding top spots in many countries and pulling in about $80 million so far.

      By the end of the summer movie season JP3 had pulled in a substantial gross of around $180 million in the US, and about that same amount overseas. Certainly not as much as either of the two previous films took in, but still not bad for a third movie in a frachise.

    Too early to be talking about a JP4?
      Nah, it's never too early to be talking about another JP film... However, the verdict on JP4 is still out. While this webpage has received reports from JP3 director Joe Johnston that he and Spielberg have had very preliminary talks about a possible Jurassic Park 4, he also said nothing is definite at this point. Joe has hinted, however, that Spielberg has an "amazing" idea for a fourth movie.

      While a JP4 obviously depends on how well JP3 does, at least one JP3 actor seems up for it: "I think there will be [a JP4]," said William H. Macy. "I took great pains to drop my wallet on one of those islands, so I have an excuse to go back."

    I didn't like the last JP movie, do we really need another?
    I have a question that's not on here, what do I do?
      Either send me an email, or post your question to the message board -- someone there will most likely know the answer (or will gladly make one up for you).

    Updated: 11/13/01

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