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What's so significant about that shaving creme can?

Jim Hill

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What's so significant about that shaving creme can?

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How many of you remember "Jurassic Park," the movie? Particularly that moment in this Steven Spielberg film where software engineer Dennis Nerdy (played with sleazy gusto by Wayne Knight) is recruited to do some corporate espionage.

What Biosyn (i.e. the archrival of InGen, the bioengineering company that actually developed the process which made cloning dinosaurs possible) needed Nedry to do is steal some frozen embryos. And it even provided him with a way to transport this delicate material: A small insulated cannister that was disguised to look like a shaving creme can.

Copyright 1993 Universal Pictures. All Rights Reserved

Anyway ... Those of you who saw "Jurassic Park," the movie will remember that Roy does manage to break into that high security, super-cold storage facility where InGen keeps all of its frozen embryos. And while he does actually steal some dinosaur DNA ...

Copyright 1993 Universal Pictures. All Rights Reserved

... Nedry is never able to hand this material off to his accomplice. Due to a far-too-close encounter with a group of Dilophosaurus (AKA a spitter), who first blind Roy with their poisonous saliva and then eat him.

Copyright 1993 Universal Pictures. All Rights Reserved

And when we last see that shaving creme can (which is now loaded with tens of millions of dollars worth of precious dinosaur DNA), it's clattering down this rain-swollen stream, seemingly lost forever in some muddy ooze.

Copyright 1993 Universal Pictures. All Rights Reserved

But what really happened to that can? This narrative loose end really bothered the guys at Universal Creative, the guys who designed "Jurassic Park the Ride."

Copyright 1996 Universal Studios Hollywood. All Rights Reserved

Which is why they decided to address this question as part of the Universal Studios Hollywood version of this watery thrill ride. So the next time that you visit this Southern California theme park and experience "Jurassic Park the Ride," make a point of looking to the left as your raft floats back into the off-load area.

Photo by Shelly Smith

For there among the rocks & foliage is that Barbasol cap that Nedry dropped on that rainy night ...

Photo by Shelly Smith

... right before those spitters chewed his face off.

What about you folks? Do you have a favorite prop in a theme park attraction that actually expands on and/or continues the storyline of a favorite film of yours? And -- if so -- what might that item be?

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  • Dear Mr. Jim Hill,

    Thank you so much for sharing this story, I thought it was really awesome!

    Jurassic Park has been one of my favorite movies for quite some time now.  I'm not able to go out to California often, so I've never been to USH, and I've been wanting to go ever since they built the Jurassic Park ride.  Though, I do enjoy the Jurassic Park ride at Islands of Adventure, I ride it twice every time I get to go.

    Anyways, I think that is really neat that they have a hidden shaving cream can, maybe I'll get to go one day and see it for myself!



  • I remember when the movie came out, everyone saw the can of shaving cream and said 'There's the sequel all lined up!'

    Instead, with the sequel they decided to go with the 'Other Island' plot.  Yeah right, never thought to mention the 'Other Island' in the first movie did ya?

    But anyway, that addition to the ride is cool.

  • What the ....?

    Jim Hill shilling for product placement ideas... so we can look forward to MORE wastebasket themeing?  You're on your own.

  • Hi Jim, I think the shaving creme can is hilarious! I have never been to Universal so I've never seen it. I do remember it from the movie of course. Regarding a favorite prop, I don't have one per say but I do have a favorite stage in an amusement park attraction. It's the Wicked Wench inside POTC at Disneyland and WDW.

  • RLS.... what the sam hill are you talking about??

  • Jim -- you did an entire article about the addition of a shaving can?!

    Perhaps a vacation is in order?

  • My overall favorite prop (not movie-based, alas) is one you can find in plain sight in New Orleans Square. Next time you walk past the barnacle-encrusted anchor near the river, take a minute to read the plaque there telling the story of the pirate Jean Lafitte. I don't know what I like about it more - that the Imagineers went to the trouble of putting a plaque there knowing that few people would ever bother to look at it, or the final line they added to the plaque after it tells you about all of Lafitte's exploits...

    "... but don't believe everything you read."  :)

    As far as actual movie and TV-related props, I'd have to say my favorites are the ones that refer to episodes of the "Twilight Zone" in the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror. You have to be a real fan of the Zone to get the references of some of them, but they're a lot of fun to try and figure out!

  • Maybe I've spent too much time in the park... but here are a few of my faves:

    The three tiny pairs of slippers atop the giant mushroom by the 'Alice's Adventures in Wonderland' attraction... which fell off the caterpillar's feet as he morphed into a butterfly in the movie.

    The painting of 'Blackbeard's Ghost' that was in the sack of loot the pirates were hauling up the upramp in DL's POTC... before Jack took up residence.

    Although not film related, I would have given anything if, as a child, I could've seen the home of the 'Little Man of Disneyland' carved in that tree in Adventureland decades ago.  That was one of my favorite books as a child and had a great influence on my growing obsession with the Park.

    And, working in the other direction, all the references to DL's version of the 'Carousel of Progress' that Spielberg slipped into 'Close Encounters of the Third Kind'.

    Hey... is there an article in that? <G>

    Ron Schneider

  • pschnebs,

    That's one of my favorite jokes anywhere! The best part is that the punchline doesn't refer to what you'd think it refers to! I love it!

  • I've never been on Jurassic Park: The Ride, but how exactly does this tie up any loose ends?  Seems like it's more of an easter egg than a continuation of the story...

  • and adding to Anonymouse's thoughts...

    why only put it in California if it bothered you that much?  Why isn't it somewhere in Florida?

  • That is the most awesome thing I've ever seen. Haha.

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