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When we pick up with Bryce Dallas Howard's Claire Dearing at the start of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, she is a very different person than the woman we met in the previous film. Once an amusement park executive, she has since dedicated her life to protecting living dinosaurs, all of which remain on Isla Nublar and are in mortal danger because of an erupting volcano. It's a pretty big switch, but one that logically tracks when you consider how Howard reflected on the character in pre-production for the sequel. During an exclusive interview, Howard tells CinemaBlend:
This is the first time that I've ever played a character twice, and that was really fun! And what I realized was that the experience of Jurassic World for her was really a turning point in her life. I talked to some folks who have become activists as their career, as their life's mission. And usually there is that defining moment, where they're like, 'Yeah, I had a corporate job, and I didn't stop and smell the roses, and all this kind of stuff, and then this big event happened, and I realized, basically, who I was and what I believed in.' So getting into Fallen Kingdom, it was so interesting for me. I was so interested in how that woman could have gotten to this place, and it still made sense to me. So I was like, 'Oh, this is cool!'
Earlier this month I had the pleasure of hopping on the phone with Bryce Dallas Howard to discuss her role in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, and our first topic of discussion was about the character's evolution from the first Jurassic World to the sequel. It turns out that while the film may be a work of science-fiction, there is a very real reality to the development, as there is a legitimate explanation for why a person like Claire Dearing would completely change her life for the benefit of an important cause. It was something that the actress ultimately connected with, and motivated her performance.
When considered logically, one can certainly understand Claire's changed perspective when we catch up with her in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. Sure, she has seen the worst that can happen when carnivorous, wild dinosaurs interact with people, but there is also an important recognition of the source of the problems: humanity. After all, it was executives seeking bigger returns on investment who motivated the creation of the Indominus Rex, and since the fall of the park the creatures have apparently been living in isolated harmony. There are calls to just let the dinosaurs die because of the chaos they can create, but there's a substantial argument to be made that once they are living they have the right to stay that way -- especially if steps can be taken to ensure their survival from a natural disaster.
This major debate is the spark that lights the powder keg as far as the plot is concerned in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, and there are multiple twists and turns from there. You'll be able to see the action for yourself this weekend as the blockbuster heads to theaters -- and stay tuned for more from my interviews with Bryce Dallas Howard, Jeff Goldblum, and director J.A. Bayona.