John Hammond, the man responsible for the existence of Jurassic Park and the grandfather of kids Lex and Tim, did not make it off the island alive in Michael Crichton’s novel, which was adapted for the original 1993 movie. But in the film, Hammond (played by Richard Attenborough) survived and returned in ‘The Lost World’ in 1997. But that wasn’t always the plan.
In Crichton’s novel, Hammond was killed by two Compys. Early on, plans were in place for Hammond to die, but in a different way. He would have been killed by one of the film’s main baddies, a Velociraptor. This sequence made it as far as the storyboarding process, and this week, the Jurassic Time Facebook group unearthed the original storyboards depicting Hammond’s planned demise. The fan group also supplied some context for the scene:
“Hammond is in [the Visitor’s Center control room] alone, raptor breaks in and slams him on the model of his park, while also breaking an incubator of eggs that was part of an earlier version of the script. An earlier version that will someday be explored on this page, but not today. There is still a lot more to come on Jurassic Time.”
Attenborough lent his voice to the video game ‘Jurassic Park: Chaos Island’, but didn’t appear in the flesh in another film after ‘The Lost World’, and unfortunately, he passed away in 2014. (He has subsequently appeared in the form of photographs and even a statue in ‘Jurassic World‘.)
Attenborough’s Hammond will get some love this summer at San Diego Comic-Con International, as Mattel will offer an exclusive John Hammond action figure, which comes with two dino eggs, similar to the ones shown in the storyboard.
If you want your own, he will only cost $15, IF you can get him at SDCC or can get one from someone that attends. He’ll sell for a lot more on the secondary market. (For more details about the figure, click here.)
But what do you think of Hammond’s alternate fate? Would the film have worked better if he’d died? Or was the ending fine as it was?