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Jurassic World relaunched the Jurassic franchise in 2015 after a 14-year hiatus, but aside from B.D. Wong reprising Dr. Henry Wu and the action taking place on the same island where the dinosaurs wreaked havoc in the first movie, the fourth entry in the series was a relatively self-contained affair. Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, on the other hand, will be establishing more ties with the original Jurassic Park trilogy, most notably with Jeff Goldblum reprising Dr. Ian Malcolm. While news of Goldblum's return earlier this year undoubtedly pleased many fans of those dinosaur-filled franchise, according to the actor, we shouldn't expect to see that much during the sequel. He stated:
It's small. Who knows, they may cut me out entirely! But if I stay in I'll be a sprig of parsley or a little garnish, hopefully with some impact!
Ian Malcolm was an integral character in the first two Jurassic Park movies, so when it was announced he would be back for Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, no doubt there were some hoping he would be playing an important role in this blockbuster, too. However, as Jeff Goldblum revealed during the Empire podcast, his screen time will be minimal, and that's assuming his scenes aren't outright cut for the theatrical version. I suspect the chances of Goldblum being eliminated entirely from Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom are unlikely given his character's popularity, but stranger things have happened.
In any case, it sounds like we don't need to worry about Ian Malcolm overshadowing the new characters of the Jurassic World series. Presumably his involvement will be more than just a mere cameo though, akin to Ellie Sattler's appearance in Jurassic Park III. At most, perhaps Malcolm will fill a mentorship role to the main protagonists, or he's called in to consult during the latest bout of dinosaur insanity. However he fits into the story, fingers crossed that he doesn't find himself victim to one of these prehistoric creatures.
So far Ian Malcolm and Henry Wu are the only characters from the original Jurassic Park movies who are confirmed to appear in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. However, James Cromwell's character, Benjamin Lockwood, helped John Hammond, the man who started all this, develop the technology to clone dinosaurs. Along with these actors, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom's cast includes Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard reprising Owen Grady and Claire Dearing, respectively, as well as Rafe Spall, Justice Smith, Toby Jones, Daniella Pineda, Ted Levine, Geraldine Chaplin and Kevin Layne.
Directed by A Monster Calls' J.A. Bayona, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom rampages into theaters on June 22, 2018, but those of you looking to get your Jeff Goldblum fix earlier can see him as Grandmaster in Thor: Ragnarok starting November 3. Scan through our 2018 movie guide to find out what else is being released next year.