Sam Neill Says Alan Grant Not Returning for Jurassic World 2

While the upcoming Jurassic World 2 is set to begin production in Hawaii and London in February 2017, it looks as if one legacy cast member will not be returning: Sam Neill. The Hunt for the Wilderpeople actor -who recently revealed a role in Thor: Ragnarok– told Shortlist (vis Screen Rant) not to expect his Dr. Alan Grant to make any new trips into dino country.

“I think the problem is that no one knows where Alan Grant is anymore,” Neill said, filling in his own backstory. “He’s retired from paleontology. He’s sick to death of dinosaurs and running. He’s not quite as fleet of foot as he was, and he’s now retired to Dayton, Ohio, and has a very successful accountancy business. I think that’s what’s happened to Alan. Either that or he’s dead. How do you recover from all of that stuff? I don’t think therapists are trained to deal with post-dino stuff. No. I don’t think you get over it. Accountancy would be one way.”

Wether Neill, who reprised the role for 2001’s coldly-recieved Jurassic Park III, doesn’t want to return to the role or is playing coy is up to debate (his tone is pretty playful), but according to him he has not been approached by Universal.

“The call hasn’t come,” Neill stated. “And no one can find Grant. He’s disappeared. Someone found his hat. His hat was floating on the Hudson river, but that was the last ever heard of him.”

Neill’s original co-star Jeff Goldblum has said he’d be open to reprising his Ian Malcolm character from Jurassic Park and The Lost World, and fans would love to see Grant and Malcolm together onscreen again for the first time since 1993. Whether the filmmakers will give in to nostalgia or keep the series moving forward with the new characters they’ve established has yet to be seen.

The Impossible and A Monster Calls director J.A. Bayona will direct the Jurassic World 2 from a script by Colin Trevorrow and Derek Connolly. Trevorrow decided to hand over the director’s chair for the sequel, opting to journey to a galaxy far, far away with Star Wars: Episode IX. He previously revealed the quote from the original Jurassic Park that inspired their idea for the sequel, which comes from Sam Neil’s Alan Grant: “Dinosaurs and man, two species separated by 65 million years of evolution have just been suddenly thrown back into the mix together. How can we possibly have the slightest idea what to expect?”

Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard will both reprise their roles for the film. Frank Marshall and Steven Spielberg will produce the film, which is set for release on June 22, 2018.

Released in 2015, Jurassic World brought in over $652 million at the domestic box office and over $1.67 billion worldwide.