First ‘Jurassic World’ Set Photos Tease a Return to the Island

Jurassic Park's Isla Nublar

The Lost World: Jurassic Park and Jurassic Park III may pale in comparison to Steven Spielberg’s 1993 original, but there’s enough positivity and potential around the franchise’s fourth installment, Jurassic World, to suggest that the film's director Colin Trevorrow (Safety Not Guaranteed) really might be the guy to bring the series back to its roots.

Thus far we know that the story will play out in real-time, 22 years after the events of Jurassic Park, and take place on Isla Nublar like the original, not Isla Sorna like The Lost World and Jurassic Park III. Chris Pratt will play a guy named Owen - a character the actor describes as a mix of Alan Grant and Ian Malcolm from the previous movies - while Bryce Dallas Howard plays a corporate scientist who butts heads with Pratt on how to deal with the genetically manufactured dinosaurs. On top of that, we’ll also have two kids in the mix again, one played by Ty Simpkins (Iron Man 3) and another by Nick Robinson (Kings of Summer).

With production expected to begin on Oahu and Kauai in April, preparations are currently being made and OnLocationVacations (via JoBlo) got some photos showing the progress of the set build. The images are a little fuzzy, but do show some set construction happening over at Kualoa Ranch, a location used for the 1993 original. The outlet’s source also spotted signs posted at the entrance that said EBB, which references the film’s production title, “EBB Tide.”

For additional set images, head on over to OnLocationVacations.

Clearly these photos don’t reveal all that much about the film, but seeing sets go up in an area so reminiscent of the first film and knowing that the action will go down on Isla Nublar again is an absolute thrill. No matter which way they go with this story – whether rumors of a fully functional Jurassic Park are true or perhaps if the narrative has Pratt and Howard’s characters on site to clean up the wreckage from the first film – being back in that primary location will have the narrative oozing with nostalgia.

Jurassic World Hawaii Set Photo

Plus, it also gives the filmmakers the opportunity to dip back into the source material and pursue certain plot points from Michael Crichton’s book that were abandoned in the first film adaptation. For instance, the start of the book focuses on mysterious animal attacks in Costa Rica that are incredibly suspenseful, somewhat disturbing and highly cinematic. Should Trevorrow run with a dilapidated version of the park, those attacks could make for prime inciting incidents and strong reasons to go back to Jurassic Park.

On the other hand, if we’re heading towards a functional version of the park, Pratt could wind up being the new Robert Muldoon (Bob Peck) and Howard the next Henry Wu (BD Wong). If you’ve read the book, you know that there’s much more about Muldoon and Wu worth exploring, so it would be nice to see qualities of the characters from the book make their way into these new main players, hopefully digging deeper into the science behind the animals’ creation and the functionality of the park.

Ultimately, the key to this movie will be the reason to return to Jurassic Park. It’s that exact element that put both The Lost World and Jurassic Park III on the wrong track right from the start. Trevorrow may have zero big budget or franchise experience, but Safety Not Guaranteed (his sole directorial effort so far) does suggest he’s in the business not just to churn out movies, but rather to truly understand the material and then explore his directorial options from there - something that made Safety Not Guaranteed the best film it could be.

Plus, Pratt was recently quoted as saying, “I sat down with [Colin Trevorrow] and it was kind of like with me and ['Guardians of the Galaxy' director] James [Gunn], we just kind of started getting excited about this.” Based on just 15 seconds of Guardians of the Galaxy footage, I’m now inclined to believe that Pratt does know what he’s doing when choosing a director.


Jurassic World hits theaters on June 12th, 2015.

Source: OnLocationVacation (via JoBlo)

Follow Perri on Twitter @PNemiroff.

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