It is well-known at this point that “Jurassic World,” the latest instalment of the “Jurassic Park” franchise, diverges from the science when it comes to its portrayal of dinosaurs.
In real life, many of the dinosaurs vary in size and are often covered in feathers, but a few of them actually don’t look that different.
Let’s start with Velociraptor, one of the most feared creatures in the “Jurassic Park” universe:
The look of Velociraptors in the film was actually based more off of Deinonychus …
… as well as a Utahraptor which was discovered as the original “Jurassic Park” was being made:
One of the most terrifying new dinosaurs introduced in “Jurassic World” is the Mosasaurus, which makes even a great white shark look tiny.
The real Mosasaurus isn’t actually a dinosaur and it didn’t have spikes along its back.
The Mosasaurus is really “marine lizard that’s more closely related to snakes and lizards,” according to Dr. John Hutchinson.
However, that is nowhere near the biggest problem with the film’s depiction.
According to Mark Witton, an illustrator who researches and specialises in dinosaurs, that misconception is based off depictions of this animal from the 1890s. The mistake was cleared up in the early 1900s.
“The [“Jurassic World”] press has been showing their mosasaur has a series of scutes along it’s back, similar to depictions of these animals by artists working in the 1890s. These Victorian artists were misled by bones which had dislocated from the throat to lie along the top of fossil skeletons, but this mistake was recognised by the early 1900s.” Witton told Business Insider. “Indeed, we actually know quite a lot about mosasaur skin, and that they went to some length to be very streamlined and smooth.”
After making a brief cameo in “Jurassic Park,” the Gallimimus returned for “Jurassic World”:
The real Gallimimus was actually fairly similar, but with a lot more feathers.
Here is a Pteranodon, the unlucky victim of the much larger Mosasaurus:
And here’s a sketch of what the winged animal (who isn’t actually a dinosaur) probably looked like:
The Pteranodon was actually a Pterosaur, which is “a winged reptile which is very, very, very closely related to dinosaurs but not a dinosaur,” according to Hutchinson.
“No pterosaur had feet like that, and they certainly couldn’t pick things up with them as shown in the trailers.” Witton told Business Insider.
And finally, there’s the almighty T. rex:
The real T. rex was still huge, but it was actually covered in feathers.
Some have jokingly compared the T. rex to a “giant chicken.” But still, would you want to mess with it?
“Jurassic World” opens in theatres Friday.
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