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Joe Johnston Out for Jurassic 4

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I wrote a week ago how Laura Dern is spreading rumors that Jurassic Park 4 will be going into production soon. It looks like MTV picked up on this and went around to the usual suspects to see if anyone was willing to go on the record about the time table or who might be working on the next film. Though nobody has been confirmed for production, or even if it will be made, MTV has picked up at least one interesting piece of news: JP 3 director Joe Johnston will not be onboard for Jurassic Park IV.

But apparently Johnston isn't "the right guy" to direct the sequel. When reached for comment, representatives for the director were adamant that Johnston is "definitely not directing ['Jurassic Park IV']." So who will direct the fiercely awaited sequel? Laughing, Dern suggested a candidate some might consider a little outside the box.

With all due respect, that is not very encouraging to fans. There aren't very many directors out there that could pull of a respectable addition to this franchise after the miserable failures of the second and third films. Supposedly JP 3 did alright in the theaters, but lets be honest with ourselves, that film just plain old stunk. Sam Neill did an admirable job with what he had to work with, but the story just wasn't there. I'm tired of the calm cool and collected kid that's more mature and probably more intelligent than both of his parents put together.

Those kinds of kids simply don't exist in reality, at least not in any kind of abundance, and most of the time they are used just to make their parents look extra inept at life rather than focusing on the hows and whys of the kid. Also, the first film went to the well on the "I'm a dino-expert, good thing I'm here!" and sucked that baby dry, and all the other supporting characters in JP 3 were too stupid to listen anyway.

Except the kid, who had the entire island survival thing figured out all by himself, essentially negating the purpose of going there in the first place.

Directing isn't as important has having a solid story, because it is infinitely more difficult to craft them. I would take a middle tier direction like Johnston over an A-list pseudo-star any day, if it meant getting an A-list writer. It may not be visually astounding, ala Lord of the Rings, but at least the damn story will make sense.

"I don't know if he is in talks with them or not, [but] maybe David Lynch [should direct] it just to kind of shake things up a little bit. That would make it kind of interesting and unique," the 40-year-old actress said of her longtime collaborator. "I don't know [who] — I just hope it's as irreverent as Steven has always wanted them to be."

I'm just going to pretend she didn't say that.

While Dern was confident the film was "[just] around the corner," the "Jurassic Park" veteran paleobotanist hasn't actually seen a completed script, nor does she know where the story might be headed. "I know nothing else except that it is happening," she insisted. [...] Calls to reps for series stars Jeff Goldblum and Sam Neill were not returned by press time.

No script, no director, no film. Sorry to anyone who has gotten their hopes up, this film doesn't exist anymore than it did a month ago. This doesn't look like anything more than Laura Dern getting her name in the papers.

You can read the whole deal at, but be prepared for a horridly slow site designed entirely in flash. Ugh, what were they thinking?

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The text of this article is Copyright © 2006,2007 Paul William Tenny. All rights reserved. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 United States License. Attribution by: full name and original URL. Comments are copyrighted by their authors and are not subject to the Creative Commons license of the article itself.