Article first published in The Morning Call December 2016 by Kathy Lauer-Williams.
Visitors to the Franklin Institute’s new “Jurassic World: The Exhibition” may feel they are actually visiting Isla Nublar, a park filled with re-created dinosaurs just like in the hit 2015 movie “Jurassic World.”
The Philadelphia museum is hosting the North American premiere of the exhibit, where visitors take on the role of guests and tour the park through re-creations from the film, the fourth in the “Jurassic Park” series.
The massive exhibit was created by Imagine Exhibitions in collaboration with paleontologist adviser Jack Horner, and Audio Spotlight sound beam technology by Holosonics, which was selected to add various engaging sounds throughout the interactive exhibit space, without bleed to surrounding areas.
“This exhibit takes the word ‘extraordinary’ to a completely new level,” says Larry Dubinski, president and CEO of The Franklin Institute. “This is the closest people will ever come to seeing living, breathing dinosaurs.”
Exhibit areas are based on scenes from the film, including the Hammond Creation Lab, where dinosaurs are “bred” using dinosaur DNA. Pieces of amber that purportedly contain dinosaur DNA adorn one wall and in the center of the lab are two incubators holding eggs. One incubator holds recently hatched baby dinosaurs, brought to life with convincing animatronics. Audio Spotlight technology was implemented throughout the lab space using (3) AS-24i speakers. The speakers were concealed behind a scrim fabric hung from the ceiling, but their sound beams “shined” through, delivering audio in front of various interactive digital display elements without disrupting the surrounding displays.
“This is a dream come true for me with this exhibit combining entertainment and education,” says Tom Zaller, president and CEO of Imagine Exhibitions. “This exhibit belongs in a museum. Museums are primarily storytellers whether they are telling visitors about the brain or dinosaurs. The goal from the beginning of this project was to transport people to Jurassic World through our experience, not just walk by and seeing it, but to truly feel like they are there, in the park and we did it.”
The touring exhibit runs at Philadelphia’s Franklin Institute through April 23, 2017 before relocating to Chicago’s Field Museum for a re-opening on May 26.