Last year, Universal Studios Hollywood announced that it would be closing its 1996 theme park attraction, Jurassic Park: The Ride, to recolor its guts and reopen it once again as Jurassic World: The Ride. The news of the ride’s reboot echoed the same thought of park-goers and Universal Studios Hollywood workers: good riddance. The ride was stale, and even though it’s the most expensive Jurassic Park/World project known to man, costing $191 million —adjusted for inflation—of Universal’s budget, it was barely exciting. The river raft allowed the ride’s dinosaurs to annoyingly spit water at your face, and moved at a snail’s pace to show off a dinosaur prison break that climaxed with a massive Tyrannosaurus rex staring down at you as you fall down a hill between its legs.
On paper, this is rad, sure. But a 1996 theme ride needs its updates, and a new skin job for its animatronic dinos was sorely needed. Last month, Universal Studios Hollywood opened its newly remodeled Jurassic World: The Ride, and unsurprisingly, it remains mostly the same, aside from the cast of Jurassic World shooting new footage for the ride’s waiting queue and the appearance of a big ass mosasaurus. Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, and BD Wong reprise their roles as Owen Grady, Claire Dearing, and Dr. Henry Wu, respectively, tossing some JW lore and context at theme park guests before they climb aboard their river rafts.
It’s incredibly endearing, however, when you hear the behind-the-scenes discussion of the ride’s update. Universal Studios Hollywood spoke with Steven dang Spielberg and Jurassic World’s Colin Trevorrow to explain the ride’s prior legacy, its inextricable tie with the movie series, and the act of bringing dinosaurs to life. They also show off how the ride’s designers went about creating the ride’s indominus and mosasaurus.
For those who haven’t visited the park’s newly rebooted Jurassic Park ride, you can watch the entire experience on YouTube.
And if you’re nostalgic and think “the older ride was better,” you can watch that, too.