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How Colin Trevorrow Humanized ‘Jurassic World’ with the Hybrid Indominus Rex

How Colin Trevorrow Humanized 'Jurassic World' with the Hybrid Indominus Rex

For Colin Trevorrow, the transition from “Safety Not Guaranteed” to “Jurassic World” meant finding a deeply personal theme that he could relate to: reconnecting with our humanity in the face of greed, which, of course, took him back to the Amblin movies he grew up with in Vermont.  And the creation of the hybrid Indominus Rex enabled him to contrast the old with the new.

“The creation of that hybrid animal is done for one reason alone — to make a lot of money,” Trevorrow added. “We create a lot of monsters in the name of money. And if I were to look back at the last 22 years and the lessons that we’ve learned about making a new science-fiction film, it seems like that’s a recurring theme.”

However, it was most important to build the story around the familiar Spielberg themes of family dislocation, alienation and the fear of divorce. What Trevorrow added to this was sibling conflicts between sisters Bryce Dallas Howard and Judy Greer and between teenage brothers Nick Robinson and Ty Simpkins.

“This is something that has been on my mind and that informs my filmmaking,” the director explained. “My family is doing quite well and the divorce element was not necessarily a personal one, but what felt personal was having a sibling and that moment in life when one is moving on and the other is feeling left behind, and the older one is having to become a parent.”

Lack of family and nurturing also extends to the Indominus, which is isolated in captivity as opposed to the four sibling Raptors, which have developed social skills and have been nurtured by Chris Pratt’s expert trainer.

“Even though they’re all synthetic, I thought it would be interesting to create something that was such an abomination of man that it would make the other creations feel organic in comparison,” Trevorrow suggested. “It is the other and it is ghostly white like a phantom and yet manages to take on the color of its surroundings even when it’s not camouflaging. It has no identity and is seeking to find it at the end of the film. If anything, that animal represented progress in many ways, for better or worse.”

Early on, Pratt utters the key line:  “What if progress loses for a change?”

When asked to relate it to “Jurassic Park,” Trevorrow admitted: “There is nothing like the original.”

The key moment, meanwhile, occurs when the brothers are alone in the wild in the gyrosphere and are brought closer together after being attacked by the Indominus (a noteworthy dino advancement from ILM with a new rig, new skin and new muscle systems).

Identifying nightmares was something Trevorrow had fun with: fear and claustrophobia inside a protective bubble that becomes a toy for the Indominus that eventually bursts. “Swallowing the gyro like an egg and being slowly digested was another nightmare that I found most horrifying.

“I love that we start with a family in the snow and leaving on a vacation. I love that we don’t have a big action sequence upfront. And I love the moment when the boys have defeated one of the Raptors in the back of that truck and burst out in joy. It brings me back a little to the tone of the old Amblin movies.”

So now Trevorrow will attempt to go back and forth between small and mid-size and big budget movies. His next will be the indie “Book of Henry” scripted by author Gregg Hurwitz (“Tell No Lies”) and produced by Sidney Kimmel. After that, the director and his writing partner, Derek Connelly, will make “Intelligent Life” with Amblin/DreamWorks (produced by Frank Marshall and exec produced by Steven Spielberg). Trevorrow was mum but It reportedly has its roots in an earlier script, “The Ambassador,” about falling in love with a mysterious woman who turns out to be an alien.

“This process over the last couple of years has only reinforced my desire to tell many different kinds of stories and I recognize the leap that has been taken,” Trevorrow said. “I don’t necessarily think it’s right for everyone, and, if anything, I would’ve actually appreciated the ability to make some more smaller films and medium films to grow to this because you naturally build your craft. I had as much creative freedom on this as the first one.”

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