‘Jurassic Park’ Stars Laura Dern and Sam Neill Open Up About 20-Year Romance

Laura Dern and Sam Neill didn’t think much of their characters falling in love onscreen in Steven Spielberg’s 1993 sci-fi hit “Jurassic Park.”

However, almost 30 years later, the couple realized that their 20-year age difference – she was 23 compared to 42 – probably wasn’t the best idea.

Dern, 55, and Neill, 74, discussed their characters’ romance in ‘Jurassic Park’ with The Sunday Times, noting their feelings have changed over the years.

“I’m 20 years older than Laura! Which, at the time, was a very appropriate age difference for a leading man and woman,” the ‘Tudors’ star said.

Dern and Neill both reprise their roles as paleobotanist Dr. Ellie Sattler and paleontologist Dr. Alan Grant in the upcoming “Jurassic World Dominion.”

The New Zealand native went on to reveal the moment he knew the relationship wasn’t “quite right”.

Dern was just 23 when she filmed the dinosaur action-adventure in the early 90s and was 26 when the movie finally hit theaters. Neill was in his 40s when filming the film.

Richard Attenborough, Martin Ferrero, Sam Neill, Jeff Goldblum and Laura Dern in “Jurassic Park”.
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“It never occurred to me until I opened a magazine and there was an article called ‘Old Geezers and Gals’. People like Harrison Ford and Sean Connery act with people much younger,” Neill continued. “And there I was, on the list. I thought, ‘Come on. That can’t be true.'”

The ‘Marriage Story’ star agreed with Neill’s comments, noting, “Well, it seemed totally fitting to fall in love with Sam Neill.”

The Oscar-winning actress added, “And it’s only now, when we’ve come back in a moment of cultural awareness about patriarchy, that I’m like, ‘Wow! We’re not the same age?

From left, actors Sam Neill and Laura Dern pose with American director Steven Spielberg in a commercial for the film 'Jurassic Park', 1993. (Photo by Murray Close/Getty Images)
Sam Neill and Laura Dern with “Jurassic Park” director Steven Spielberg in 1993.
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Dern also wanted to ensure that the latest sequel would focus less attention on the character’s age and more on female portrayal on the silver screen.

She said Ellie should be put in the same box as Sigourney Weaver’s Ripley from the “Alien” movies. Both characters changed the way audiences view Hollywood action heroines.

“It’s really moving,” she said. “Many women in technology and science point to a similarity between Ellie’s heroism and women in their field.”

Jeff Goldblum also returns in “Jurassic World” as Dr. Ian Malcom. He portrayed the shirtless mathematician of chaos theory in the original film. Also joining the ensemble film are Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard, reprising their roles from the previous two “Jurassic World” films.

“Jurassic World Dominion” hits theaters on June 10.

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