When it was announced that Jeff Goldblum would be reprising his role as Ian Malcolm in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, fans were elated, as the character has not been seen since 1997’s The Lost World. Despite this 20 year absence, Malcolm remains a firm fan favourite and has spawned countless memes in recent years. Speaking about his role in Variety’s Playback podcast, Goldblum suggested his upcoming performance could help promote scientific knowledge:
“I enjoyed getting a chance to dress up in black again and say a couple of things about science and being a proponent of science… The human curiosity and investigation and fact-based storehouse that we have is deeply valuable and must be esteemed and celebrated, but those who would use the animal kingdom and our scientific achievement and knowledge for profit or cheap entertainment or ticket sales or, heaven forbid, militaristic power or leverage, ‘woe be to them.’ So I liked getting another crack at that.”
Make of that what you will. It’s all very Goldblum! Another thing to get excited about is the possible inclusion of Dr Ellie Sattler, a paleobotanist who featured heavily in Jurassic Park (1993) and had a supporting role in Jurassic Park III. Goldblum said:
“I don’t want to pass on gossip like my character. But it would be good news to me and to everyone, [to] millions and billions of people all over the world… all over the universe and cosmos when Ellie Sattler returns.”
Ellie Sattler was played by Laura Dern, who was widely praised for bringing a female scientist to the big-screen who could also act as an excellent role model. Sattler was psychically strong; she was able to survive encounters with several ‘raptors unarmed. She was intelligent and invited along to the park based on her own merits, rather than by just being an understudy to Doctor Grant. Importantly, she put down sexist comments in her stride and proved that she was not to be underestimated by man or dinosaur. Her return to the series would not only be good for nostalgia sakes but also very timely; Hollywood and its audience needs characters like Ellie Sattler at the moment.
Malcolm, for his part, was a central character in Jurassic Park and became the main protagonist in its widely divisive sequel The Lost World, before being merely name-dropped in Jurassic Park III. Jurassic World (2015) in many ways gave the franchise a new lease of life and surprised us all. We’re sure that the likes of Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard will continue to please, but we can’t deny that it’s Goldblum’s return that we’re most excited about!