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RE: Follow-up: the truth about killer dinosaurs

I never liked the WWD T rex head - it looked like it had a helmet on under
the skin.  It was probably designed by a committee of palaeontologists who
could not agree.  No comment yet from the scientific adviser.

Must admit I never noticed the Iguanodon lips - I'll have to watch it again.

One thing puzzles me though - WWD was supposed to be scientifically accurate
but took a very conservative view of the science, whilst WDR took the
opposite approach and put feathers on everything.  But if it was just about
satisfying the public view, WWD was very light on gratuitous dinosaur

John Hunt

-----Original Message-----
From: owner-dinosaur@usc.edu [mailto:owner-dinosaur@usc.edu] On Behalf Of
Luis Rey
Sent: 31 August 2005 09:17
To: David Krentz
Cc: John Hunt; -Dinosaur Mailing List-
Subject: Re: Follow-up: the truth about killer dinosaurs

But... what is there in an accurate T. rex that doesn't spell  
"monster" in any lay people's mind?!
Why then does it have to be "even more monstrous" as to make it  
completely unreal?
And, although I agree that this might have been the case in Jurassic  
Park (yes, you are right: quoting Michel Trcic, they forced his model  
to be only 60% accurate because they wanted a 'monster') I doubt this  
was the case for WWD, where the animals were supposed to be "accurate  
dinosaurs in their own environment"... the aim of WWD was "giving  
certainty to people..." (in actual words of the producers, personal  
communication) not having a Disney adventure.
In what way having the wrong anatomy for the back of the head of T.  
rex and the attachment to the neck would make it more monstrous? I  
don't see WWD T. rex as more commercial than Jurassic Park's and... I  
even prefer Jurassic Park's T. rex head.
So what I see (and have seen) in many programs afterwards is that you  
can certainly be accurate and entertainingly monstrous, without  
science suffering so much in the process.  Even  Dinosaur Planet was  
vastly superior... and definitively: in the Disney movie Dinosaur I  
could read superior  anatomy than in in a lot of WWD...lack of  
feathers, caricature velociraptors and iguanodon's lips notwithstanding!

On 31 Aug 2005, at 07:32, David Krentz wrote:

> Well,  I know how designing a dino can go wrong.  The T.rex from  
> WWD looks like the worst case of design by committee I've ever  
> seen.  Any artist can tell you that there is extra pressure when  
> creating everyones favourite dinosaur.  The expectation of what our  
> worst fears look like is a hard one to capture.  Even though it is  
> an animal, and not a monster, people in entertainment look to it as  
> 'the money-maker'.  Therefore, the money people all have a say...as  
> does the producers ex-wife's brother in law's goldfish.
>   After a while it all falls apart.  On Disney's Dinosaur the  
> carnotaur (notice i did not call it a carnotaurus?) would have been  
> more silly if myself and a few others didn't create one model for  
> the money people to look at one slightly different one for those of  
> us that cared!
>   No one cared about the background dinosaurs like the  
> styracosaurus and pachycelphalosaurs, so they turned out alright!
>   What I've found is that  designing the girl and the monster in  
> any movie are the hardest assignments.  We all have a different  
> version of what scares us, and what attracts us.
> One of our directors on Dinosaur wanted the 'raptors' to be super  
> beefy and muscular.  He himself was muscular and someone who was  
> stronger than he was scary to him.  To me I thought a skinny raptor  
> was scary because starving desperate people must scare me.
>   In my own opinion on movie dinosaurs, I thought the Jurassic Park  
> T.rex was really well designed.  It was caricatured enough to be a  
> monster and an animal.  Thanks Mike Trcic!!!
>  David Krentz
> On Aug 30, 2005, at 11:03 AM, Luis Rey wrote:
>> On 30 Aug 2005, at 09:38, John Hunt wrote:
>>> Not sure why Luis was thankful the animation was not from WWD.   
>>> It really
>>> needs a makeover to keep up with the latest finds - mainly adding  
>>> feathers,
>>> but the WWD T. rex was much more lifelike than the new one, and  
>>> had also not
>>> just been to the dentist!
>> Can't agree, I'm afraid. First I would always advocate diversity  
>> and keep away from cliches (and WWD could become a cliche very  
>> easily) so any new reconstruction  seen from a different artistic  
>> point of view is almost always refreshing (unless it is deadly  
>> wrong, and despite the long strides, wide skull and some minor  
>> defects in the animation, the T.rex from "The Truth of the Killer  
>> Dinosaurs" looked pretty decent to me).
>> Secondly,  It has always been difficult to me to understand how - 
>> after so many good specimens and perfect, completely restored  
>> Tyrannosaurus skulls and anatomical treaties-  a professional can  
>> still get it wrong. And that is exactly what they did in Walking  
>> With Dinosaurs: get the back of the skull (including the area of  
>> the temporal fenestrae and the muscular attachments of the lower  
>> jaw to the skull) completely >wrong<. The T. rex there is a   
>> chimera: the proportions are not quite right and the attachment of  
>> the skull to the neck looks also completely artificial.
>> To me, the general look of the WWD T.rex is more like a  
>> sophisticated, glorified version of one of the vilest T.rex  
>> puppets ever to star in a publication (namely "Tyrannosaurus, On  
>> The Trail Of The Ferocious Meat-Eating Dinosaur", Dorling  
>> Kindersley 1992). The WWD team took a while to get their dinosaurs  
>> completely right...  the Allosaurus from "Ballad of Big Al" was  
>> pretty decent  at last.
>> Luis Rey.
>> Visit my website
>> http://www.ndirect.co.uk/~luisrey

Luis Rey

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