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Jurassic Park

Jurassic Park is a book written by Michael Crichton and published in 1990, which was later turned into a movie directed by Steven Spielberg. Written as a cautionary tale on unconsidered biological tinkering (in much the same spirit as Mary Shelley's Frankenstein), it explores the consequences of an attempt to re-create certain species of dinosaur to serve as amusement park attractions.

In the book, a group of scientists (including paleontologist Alan Grant and chaos theory mathematician Ian Malcolm) are invited on an all-expenses paid pre-release visit to Jurassic Park, a zoo-like amusement park set up by John Hammond on the island of Isla Nublar (near Costa Rica). The action begins when Dennis Nedry, chief programmer of the Jurassic Park controlling software, tries to steal dinosaur embryos as per a deal with one of John Hammond's competitors. In order to do this, he has to turn off the electricity to the park's many electric fences, and a number of dinosaurs - including a Tyrannosaurus rex - escape from their enclosures, and have a number of encounters with the scientists, who remain inside the park. The book has one sequel so far, The Lost World.

The book was later turned in to a movie with the same name directed by Steven Spielberg which was filmed on the Hawaiian islands of Oahu and Kauai in September 1992 and released in 1993. The film was immensely popular with critics and movie-goers alike and grossed $919,700,000 worldwide, the highest grossing film ever at the time, and the sixth highest worldwide box office take for a feature film as of 2004. The movie won the Academy Award for Visual Effects and spawned two sequels, The Lost World: Jurassic Park (1997) and Jurassic Park III (2001). It was considered revolutionary in its time for its outstanding special effects. Using computer-generated imagery, the company Industrial Light and Magic created a large number of dinosaurs, including a whole herd in one memorable stampede scene. Jurassic Park IV (IMDb), is currently in production and will be released in 2005.

One of the themes expressed throughout this story and its sequels is that of homeothermic (warm-blooded) dinosaurs; a recent theory popularized by paleontologist Bob Bakker.

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Last updated: 11-08-2004 07:41:05