Did Universal Just Foreshadow a Live-Action ‘Jurassic World’ TV Series Set on the Mainland?

in Movies & TV

Jurassic World: Dominion

Credit: Universal Studios

Jurassic World: Dominion (2022) continues to climb the box office, having so far grossed $828 million worldwide. Needless to say, it’s on track to make $ 1 billion worldwide, though it still has a way to go before it reaches the same heights as its predecessors Jurassic World (2015) and Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom (2018), which grossed $1.6 billion and $1.3 billion, respectively.

But regardless of the new film’s financial success, it has been torn apart by fans and critics, not unlike poor Robert Muldoon (Bob Peck) after mouthing the iconic words “Clever girl” in the original 1993 classic. Many feel that the film should have focused on dinosaurs on the mainland, which was a huge part of the marketing for Jurassic World: Dominion over the past four years.

Jurassic World: Dominion
Credit: Universal Studios

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Warning — there are huge spoilers ahead for Jurassic World: Dominion.

As per the Universal Pictures and Amblin Entertainment website, here’s the official synopsis for Colin Trevorrow’s Jurassic World: Dominion:

Dominion takes place four years after Isla Nublar has been destroyed. Dinosaurs now live — and hunt — alongside humans all over the world. This fragile balance will reshape the future and determine, once and for all, whether human beings are to remain the apex predators on a planet they now share with history’s most fearsome creatures.

Jurassic World Dominion Map
Credit: Universal Studios via Twitter

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Not only was this concept teased in video games, trailers, and even cross-promotional TV spots such as the 2022 Winter Olympics, it’s something that was already packaged at the end of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, which sees dinosaurs released into the North American Wilderness, followed by a post-credits scene that shows pteranadons in Las Vegas.

Following the 2018 sequel, short canonical film Battle at Big Rock (2019), also directed by Colin Trevorrow, who helmed Jurassic World and Jurassic World: Dominion, was released by Universal Pictures. The eight-minute film offers an intriguing snapshot of this problem, by pitting a family against an allosaur during a camping trip.

Jurassic World Dominion
Credit: Universal Studios

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More recently, Universal released the five-minute prologue for Jurassic World: Dominion, which isn’t part of the theatrical release (though many are hoping it will be utilized in a director’s cut). The second short film invites us to the Cretaceous Period, before bringing us up to speed in the modern world where “Rexy” is being chased by authorities through the Sierra Nevada Forest.

So it seems that the marketing for the sixth installment in the Jurassic Park/Jurassic World franchise has been somewhat mis-leading. That’s not to suggest that we don’t get dinosaurs on the mainland in Jurassic World: Dominion, but ultimately, the premise just doesn’t factor into the film’s main plot as much as we may have expected.

Isabella Sermon in Jurassic World Dominion
Credit: Universal Studios

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On the other hand, the first sixty minutes of the film spans many real-world locations, such as the Sierra Nevada Mountains, where Claire Dearing (Bryce Dallas Howard), Owen Grady (Chris Pratt), and Maisie Lockwood (Isabella Sermon) are living in a remote cabin, while Blue the velociraptor and her offspring Beta live in the woods nearby.

Claire spends her time breaking dinosaurs out of illegal breeding farms with the help of Zia Rodriguez (Daniella Pineta) and Franklin Webb (Justice Smith), while Owen wrangles parasaurs so that they can be relocated, far from the reach of poachers. And then we visit a dinosaur black market in Malta, which results in the release of allosaurs, carnotaurs, and atrociraptors.

DeWanda Wise and Chris Pratt in 'Jurassic World Dominion'
Credit: Universal Studios

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So, despite what you may think, or what you may have heard, Jurassic World: Dominion spends a fair amount of time on the mainland. But it’s not really the dinosaurs that are causing problems — in true Jurassic fashion, it’s the humans. Beyond that first sixty minutes, though, we spend the remainder of the film in a jungle-based facility, not unlike the previous five installments.

And while there is some connective tissue between the film’s main plot — which revolves around genetically-engineered Cretaceous locusts threatening the world’s food supply — and the widespread dinosaur problem, the trouble is that we don’t return to the latter until the closing frames of the film, during which the matter appears to have inexplicably resolved itself.

(L to R ) Jeff Goldblum, Sam Neill, Laura Dern, Bryce Dallas Howard, Chris Pratt, Isabella Sermon and DeWanda Wise in Jurassic World Dominion
Credit: Universal Studios

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Nevertheless, themes of mankind trying to control nature using genetic power, which have been present in every Jurassic Park movie, with the exception of Jurassic Park III (2001), is put under the spotlight in Jurassic World: Dominion like never before. And if it wasn’t for genetic power going “open source”, Biosyn would have never been able to re-create the locusts.

In fact, this storyline, as frustrating as you may find it, is even foreshadowed by Dr. Ian Malcolm (Jeff Goldblum) in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. In that film, he says, “Genetic power won’t end with the de-extinction of the dinosaurs”, referring of course to other organizations around the world using genetic power for their own gain.

Jurassic World Dominion chris pratt as owen grady with dinosaur
Credit: Universal Studios

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While it’s unlikely that the filmmakers themselves have any influence over how the film is marketed, it’s equally unlikely that Universal Pictures has deliberately mis-marketed Jurassic World: Dominion. But whether the creative team or the studio is to blame, it seems that the latest film in the Jurassic series has created a demand for a live-action Jurassic World TV series.

How so? Well, fans are now more hungry than ever to see dinosaurs causing problems all around the world. While the final scenes of Jurassic World: Dominion depict dinosaurs learning to co-exist with modern day animals, there’s still a huge amount of untold stories that will span those four years between the 2018 film and its 2022 sequel — and far beyond.

Pyroraptor Jurassic World: Dominion
Credit: Universal Studios via YouTube

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There’s one particular sequence in Jurassic World: Dominion that Universal Pictures should turn its attention towards, and that’s the entire Malta sequence. Not only does the whole thing feel like something out of a James Bond or Mission: Impossible movie — which works incredibly well — but the illegal dinosaur trade market is begging to be explored in a live-action TV series.

Enter DeWanda Wise’s ex-air force pilot Kayla Watts, who, up until the events of Jurassic World: Dominion, was paid to fly dinosaurs to and fro without asking any questions. Considering the fact that she has quickly become a fan-favorite character, bringing her back makes too much sense to ignore. After all, she feels like a cross between Indiana Jones and Han Solo!

Chris Pratt Jurassic World: Dominion
Credit: Universal Studios via YouTube

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There are other Jurassic World: Dominion characters who could work alongside Kayla Watts in a Jurassic World TV series, such as Barry Sembène (Omar Sy) and Ramsay Cole (Mamoudou Athie), raptor expert-turned CIA operative and Biosyn whistle-blower, respectively. Both characters are underused in the film, and as such have plenty more potential to be explored.

Whether or not we’ll get a live-action Jurassic World TV series remains to be seen. While Jurassic World: Dominion is considered the final movie in the series, given the box office figures, we may get Jurassic World 4. Not only that, but producer Frank Marshall doesn’t think it’s the end. For now, we’ll just have to make do with animated show Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous (2020).

Jurassic World Camp Cretaceous
Credit: Universal Studios

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We happen to love Jurassic World: Dominion, and if you can put aside all the marketing, the chances are that you’ll probably enjoy the film a lot more. The locust storyline, which sees bioengineering company Biosyn trying to monopolize the world’s food supply market, might seem jarring at first, but it still plays into the overarching theme first established in Jurassic Park (1993).

Jurassic World: Dominion is directed by Colin Trevorrow and stars Bryce Dallas Howard (Claire Dearing), Chris Pratt (Owen Grady), Isabella Sermon (Maisie Lockwood), Omar Sy (Barry Sembène), and BD Wong (Henry Wu), Campbell Scott (Lewis Dodgson), DeWanda Wise (Kayla), Jeff Goldblum (Dr. Ian Malcolm), Sam Neill (Dr. Alan Grant), and Laura Dern (Dr. Ellie Sattler).

Sam Neill Jurassic World Dominion
Credit: Universal Studios via YouTube

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Do you think a live-action Jurassic World TV series will happen? Let us know in the comments down below!

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