Bruce Campbell could have been Ian Malcolm in Jurassic Park, really?


Jurassic Park turns 25 this year. Apparently, Bruce Campbell was in the running to be Ian Malcolm. Who knew?

“Welcome to Jurassic Park!” – John Hammond

Happy Birthday

Next month Jurassic Park turns a quarter of a century. Hard to believe isn’t it? Who knew that this Steven Spielberg directed flick would turn into an international box office behemoth?

Currently, another sequel Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom is in the wings and waiting to be released. Michael Crichton’s book spawned an entire universe. Part of the reason this movie was so successful was the casting.

Who can forget Sir Richard Attenborough as the mastermind of the dinosaur theme park John Hammond? His “Welcome to Jurassic Park,” is emblazoned in cinematic history. With fellow actors, Sam Neill, Laura Dern and Jeff Goldblum to add to the mix there is no way that this masterpiece was ever going to fail.

However, as with any production rumors abound and one in particular caught our eye at 1428 Elm. Allegedly, according to the Hollywood News, Jeff Goldblum wasn’t the only choice to play Ian Malcolm.

That particular revelation is pretty shocking considering that role put him on the map and made him the go to guy for nerdy hip scientist roles in every sci-fi blockbuster in the 90s. As a mathematician, Malcolm was known for being proficient in Chaos Theory.

His main purpose in the storyline was to assess potential dangers within the park since he was brought on board as an insurance consultant. One of his concerns was the ability to control the breeding habits of the dinosaurs because “life finds a way.”

Pretty hard to imagine anyone else playing this iconic character, right? Well, there is speculation that a certain actor was being considered for the part that eventually went to Goldblum.

That Insurance Guy Could Have Been Groovy

More from Bruce Campbell

No one can say for sure whether or not the chatter was true surrounding Ian Malcolm but apparently, Bruce Campbell was one of the names being bandied about in the casting process. While no sources are cited for this conjecture, I will admit it is an intriguing notion.

The actor has never mentioned this as a role that got away in either of his biographical works or in any interviews. So, I wonder if there is any truth to this revelation?

While Goldblum has a certain presence, which lends itself to the absent-minded professor stereotype, Campbell has never actually played a scientist. However, he has played explorers in Congo, the Majestic and Cleveland Smith: Bounty Hunter.

Since every actor has a different approach and interpretation of each role, in my mind, Bruce would probably add a certain degree of swagger and barbed wit to his version of Ian Malcolm. While that sounds terrific and enjoyable I have to say that Jeff Goldblum was the right man for the job.

I will admit though, a Bruce Campbell audition tape would be something to see, don’t you think?

Would Bruce have made a good Ian Malcolm? Feel free to share your opinions in the comment section below. We want to hear from you.


Next: Bruce Campbell: Confessions of a Detroit soap opera star

Susan Leighton can be found on Twitter and Facebook @SusanontheLedge as well as Instagram @convirgin. She is also featured on Friday Night Tights, the ultimate pop culture wrap up show at Nerdrotic Podcast every Friday night at 11 p.m. ET/8 p.m. PT. You can catch her weekly coverage on IFC’s Brockmire at TV Series Hub.