Could The Jurassic Park Franchise Spin Off Into A Limited Series? What OG Actor Sam Neill Had To Tell Us

 Sam Neill smirking in the middle of a Utah dig site in Jurassic World Dominion.
Sam Neill smirking in the middle of a Utah dig site in Jurassic World Dominion.

The Jurassic Park sequel trilogy, Jurassic World, seemed to come to an end in 2022, but that doesn’t mean Universal Pictures is done with the profitable piece of IP. The dinosaur-centric action franchise is set to be revived at the studio via a fourth J-World film that's currently in the works. However, with such a successful franchise, it wouldn’t be a surprise to anyone if the studio wanted to expand further, possibly with a spinoff limited series. CinemaBlend recently caught up with OG star Sam Neill, and he revealed what he thought about the franchise extending beyond the big screen.

Sam Neill has been booked and busy since making an appearance in the most recent Jurassic World film, Dominion. His latest endeavor is the buzzy new Peacock series, Apples Never Fall, and he chatted with CinemaBlend's very own Sean O'Connell about the new series. During the conversation, the star also shared his thoughts on the future of the Jurassic franchise. While the beloved actor weighed in on whether the IP is miniseries material, he admitted that he's unsure whether it would fit the mold. He said:

I have no idea about that at all. All I can tell you is for some reason, well for lots of reasons, the Jurassic franchise seems to have a lot of momentum, and there’s new generations discovering it all the time. I mean, we made the first one 30 years ago or something, and kids love dinosaurs.

While Jurassic Park still has momentum and holds a loyal audience to this day, he still isn’t sure if the franchise could sustain a story for eight episodes, the same way that Apples Never Fall does. He further said to CinemaBlend:

I think it's a franchise… it keeps being rediscovered. But whether it can sustain eight episodes, I have no idea.

The Jurassic movies may be a perfect fit for the intensity of the big screen, but Sam Neill seems right to contemplate whether or not the entertainment property would be appropriate for the series format. A mystery story like his new Peacock miniseries is a great fit, considering eight episodes are needed to unpack all the twists and turns that occur as the mystery evolves and unfolds. The appeal of Jurassic Park is somewhat less about the characters' relationships to each other (which can be fun) but the conflict that comes with massive dinosaurs roaming around a modern Earth. The runtime and structure of a movie allows for the action and terrifying sequences to shine, without it being bogged down by too much heavy-lifting narrative wise.

But, then again, the franchise has made the transition to the small screen in recent years by way of the animated series Camp Cretaceous, which ran for five seasons on Netflix and gained a solid following. A sequel series is also now in the works at the streamer. So maybe a live-action production in that vein could work? It's hard to say for sure.

At present though, a fourth Jurassic World installment very much seems to be happening. The movie already has a director attached with Rogue One filmmaker Gareth Edwards, who dropped "everything" to take on the gig. The movie will also be written by OG Jurassic Park screenwriter David Koepp. No casting decisions have been made just yet, but the plan is currently to introduce a new set of actors to the franchise. As for whether Sam Neill would return, he recently seemed to indicate that his days running from dinosaurs are over.

Even though there don’t seem to be any current plans for a live-action JP miniseries, it shouldn’t be completely ruled out. This is still a viable franchise for the studio, with Dominion surpassing a billion dollars at the box office. Every J-World film reached this milestone as well. Like Sam Neill says, there still seems to be a deep love for the series, as it's constantly being discovered by new audiences. With that, I’m sure fans would be interested in seeing a new reimagining, if it were to happen on the small screen.

Even with pre-production underway, it may be a while before we see another Jurassic project on the big screen. In the meantime, fans can stream the Jurassic Park movies now , in anticipation for new installments coming in the future. You can also see Sam Neill in Apples Never Fall, which is currently streaming for Peacock subscribers.