Promotional Jurassic Park fast food packaging on a table.
Unsplash | Carlos Kenobi

Behind-The-Scenes Facts About 'Jurassic Park' Fans Might Not Have Known

With Jurassic World Dominion, everybody's favorite dinosaur franchise is now up to six installments, so it feels like as good a time as any to think back on the franchise's roots. Specifically, that very first Jurassic Park movie that started it all, which became the summer blockbuster hit of 1993.

Like pretty much any movie that's ever existed, Jurassic Park's production is full of really interesting facts and behind-the-scenes stories. Here are just a few of those amazing facts.

The sounds used for the dinosaurs in the movie were made by real animals... getting it on.

As it turns out, in order to make the dinosaurs sound realistic, sound designer Gary Rydstrom used the sounds of actual animals... mating... to create the effects. For instance, the strange barking sound made by the velociraptors came from tortoises. Not something you'd ever think you'd need to know.

Meanwhile, on set, Spielberg was making dinosaur noises.

Spielberg  nearly dropping an award.
Giphy | The Academy Awards

No, not just for fun or anything. It was supposed to help the actors situate themselves in scenes, since the actual dinosaur sounds weren't added until post production. But apparently, he wasn't really helping all that much.

James Cameron wanted the book rights.

Sam Niell and Laura Dern looking out of a vehicle with shock on their faces.
Giphy |

As the story goes, Cameron wanted to make a movie out of Michael Crichton's novel, which became the source material for Spielberg's masterpiece. Unfortunately for Cameron, he got beaten to the punch by mere hours, and lost out on getting the book rights.

I can hardly imagine Jurassic Park directed by any other person!

The movie's T-rex puppet was pretty finicky.

The T-rex from Jurassic Park.
Giphy |

For starters, the puppet was so large, they had to make the building it was in even larger, just so it would fit in there. But that's the price you have to pay for theatrics, I guess.

There was a team charged with drying the T-rex puppet every day.

The Jurassic Park T-rex knocking a vehicle on its side.
Giphy | Vidiots

Remember, a lot of scenes featuring the fearsome dino happened in the rain. Which meant a team had to go in with towels and dryers to keep the puppet's electrical components from going haywire.

And they needed to attend safety meetings just to know how to deal with the puppet.

A large dinosaur in the middle of a spacious atrium.
Giphy | Vidiots

After all, this thing was a good 40 feet long and weighed at least 10,000 pounds, so getting stuck underneath it would be far from ideal.

All of this, and yet the total screen time for the dinosaurs totals 14 minutes.

The raptors from Jurassic Park during the kitchen scene.
Giphy | Vidiots

Despite being called Jurassic Park and centering around an island full of dinosaurs, you don't actually see them that much throughout the film's two-hour run. But let's face it: most of the movie's more memorable moments are the ones that had the dinos in them.

Harrison Ford almost starred in the film.

Indiana Jones contemplating a gold figurine on a pedestal.
Giphy |

Originally, Spielberg was considering Ford for the role of Alan Grant. He also considered other big name actors, like Kurt Russell, Kevin Costner, Tim Robbins, Dennis Quaid, and Dylan McDermott. Ultimately, the role went to Sam Neill, and the rest is history.

The triceratops poop was made using honey (to attract flies).

Jeff Goldblum walking toward a large pile of dinosaur droppings.
Giphy | Vidiots

Obviously, since dinosaurs aren't actually roaming around these days, the crew had to get creative when making the giant pile of triceratops dung featured in the film. Apparently, honey was used to attract flies. I guess the old saying is true.

An actual hurricane disrupted filming.

A satellite image of a hurricane making landfall.
Unsplash | NASA

The filming location for Jurassic Park was Kauai, in Hawaii. They filmed in the fall of 1992, which is when Hurricane Iniki hit. A lot of the original set was destroyed (though it seems like the crew made it out okay). And they even used some hurricane footage in the final film.

Unfortunately for Samuel L. Jackson, that hurricane ruined his character's death scene.

Originally, Jackson's character Arnold was supposed to have a pretty tense death scene. But because the set where it took place got destroyed in the hurricane, it got scrapped, and his character died off-screen instead.

Jeff Goldblum made his character more heroic in the final cut.

I think it's pretty safe to say that, out of all the characters in Jurassic Park, Goldblum's Dr. Ian Malcom is the fan favorite. In the scene where the characters are attacked by the T-rex, Malcom distracts it, allowing the other characters to escape.

Which was actually Goldblum's idea.

Jeff Goldblum saying, "Well, there it is."
Giphy |

Originally, Malcom was just going to run away like a coward, but Goldblum didn't like that and suggested he take the heroic route instead. Spielberg liked that idea enough that it made its way into the final cut.

And unsurprisingly enough, Malcom's bare-chested scene was Goldblum's idea, too.

Jeff Goldblum shirtless in Jurassic Park (1993).
Giphy | Vidiots

During a panel discussion for the film's 25th anniversary in 2018, Goldblum admitted that he doesn't quite recall why he ended up shirtless in that iconic scene, and it wasn't in the script. It just sort of... happened.

Wayne Knight showed up to the Seinfeld set looking a little too purple.

Dennis Nedry from Jurassic Park, covered in purple goop.
Giphy |

Knight, who was in Jurassic Park as Dennis Nedry, as well as in Seinfeld as Newman, was doing double duty when the film was filming. As a result of getting purple goo on him during Jurassic Park, the Seinfeld crew had to apply extra makeup to Knight to keep him from looking too purple.

His character's death wasn't nearly as graphic on-screen as it was in the book.

Nedry's death happens off-screen, and he isn't really mentioned in the (film) series again. But in the books, that death was a lot more intense and graphic. Apparently, Knight wanted that gorier death that his character didn't end up getting.

Sam Neill, meanwhile, had a pretty great story about watching the film with Princess Diana.

In an interview with Kyle Buchanan, Neill talks about how he saw the movie while seated next to Princess Di, and the hilarious mishap that ensued.

"I spend the whole film in a muck sweat, thinking, 'Princess Di is being exposed to the horrors of a little boy's fart, but she's going to think it's me.'"

Joe Mazzello originally auditioned for Hook.

Tim from Jurassic Park running from a dinosaur.
Giphy | Vidiots

Mazello, who played Tim in the film, got that role after auditioning for a different Spielberg flick, Hook. But Spielberg liked Mazzello so much, he changed the ages of the kids from Jurassic Park just so that he could be Tim.

Mazzello had quite an ordeal on set, too.

Tim from Jurassic Park hiding from dinosaurs in a kitchen.
Giphy | Vidiots

During the filming for the kitchen scene, Mazzello got hit in the face by a raptor claw. Oh, and it was also his birthday that day. Spielberg and the rest of the crew sang "Happy Birthday" to help him feel better.

Spielberg oversaw post-production of Jurassic Park while filming Schindler's List.

A dinosaur looking through some kind of plastic sheet.
Giphy | Vidiots

Both films releasing in 1993, there was some overlapping in production between Schindler's List and Jurassic Park. Spielberg was in the director's chair for Schindler's List while the visual effects for Jurassic Park were being applied.