With so many high-profile tentpole scheduled for 2015, that means casting for the big franchise installments and sequels arriving next year is ramping up now. We’ve witnessed that in recent months, with Marvel casting announcements for Ant-Man and near-official confirmations for the stars of Terminator: Genesis; meanwhile, projects like 20th Century Fox’s Fantastic Four reboot and Universal’s Jurassic World are finalizing their roster, ahead of a spring production start.

Bryce Dallas Howard was the first name confirmed for the new Jurassic Park installment, while Chris Pratt revealed that he was in final talks for the film about a month or so before 2013 drew to a close. Earlier this year, director Ron Howard Tweeted an image of his daughter and Pratt – meeting on the red carpet for the 2014 Golden Globes – and indicated that both are set to appear in Jurassic World; thanks to Pratt, we can now say that is indeed “official.”

Pratt voices the lead in The LEGO Movie and was present to promote the animated film during a press event held over the weekend (at the time of writing this) in the Legoland amusement park in California. There, the Parks & Recreation actor confirmed his involvement (hat tip PR Record Gazette) and spoke a little about how (like for millions of others, including several members of the Screen Rant staff) the original Jurassic Park was a generational moviegoing experience for him:

“For me, Jurassic Park was really kind of my Star Wars. I lined up at the theatre to see it, I saw it opening night, I saw every sequel, I’ve seen it a whole bunch of times… for me that was my big movie, I think I was 13 or 14 when it came out. And so it’s a big deal for me to be any part of that, let alone this part I’m going to be playing. I’m thrilled about it.”

Bryce Dallas Howard will star opposite Chris Pratt in ‘Jurassic World’

Official details are sparse, but we know for certain that Jurassic World is not a “hard reboot” and will instead pickup in real-time after the first movie (i.e. 22 years later), with a different set of human characters than previous Jurassic Park installments. Furthermore, unless the plan has changed over the past year, the film will take place on Isla Nublar and not Isla Sorna (better known as “Site B”), the latter being the setting featured in the second and third JP movies.

Reportedly, the Jurassic World script by director Colin Trevorrow and screenwriter Derek Connolly (Safety Not Guaranteed) – based on an earlier draft by Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver (Dawn of the Planet of the Apes) – casts Pratt as Owen, a “rugged ex-military dude” who butts heads with a corporate scientist (Howard) over, presumably, how to best to handle genetically-manufactured dinosaurs.

It sounds like Pratt’s character might resemble Muldoon (Bob Peck) from the original Jurassic Park – and/or Roland Tembo (Pete Postlethwaite) from The Lost World – while Howard plays a scientific mind who better understands dino behavioral tendencies, more so than her predecessors – including, Dr. Sarah Harding (Julianne Moore) from The Lost World and Dr. Ellie Sattler (Laura Dern) from JP1 (she also cameoed in Jurassic Park III).

Based on these rumored character details and the general casting (see: kid actor Ty Simpkins), it doesn’t seem as though Jurassic World will stray too far from the tried-and-true Jurassic Park movie formula; though, Trevorrow has voiced his intention to freshen things up and make this installment count for something (besides $$$, that is).

It’s certainly nice to see Pratt moving up from playing the affable best friend in movies (see: The Five-Year Engagement, Delivery Man, Her) and realizing the potential he showed for serious leading roles in films like Moneyball and Zero Dark Thirty. Look for Pratt to utilize both his comedy skills and dramatic chops alike later this year, when he heads to the stars in Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy.

Question is, will Pratt’s budding film career lead him away from his role as lovable oaf Andy on Parks & Recreation, which has been picked up for a seventh season? Maybe Burt Macklin and Janet Snakehole will have to solve the case of the missing dinosaurs on an upcoming episode.

Jurassic World opens in 2D and 3D theaters on June 12th, 2015.

Source: PR Record Gazette