The best members of the Jurassic Park crew couldn’t save the Flintstones movie



It was a stroke of good timing that brought Cundey and Lantieri on board. Production on “Jurassic Park” had just wrapped when filming on “The Flintstones” began, and lo and behold, there were big openings in both men’s schedules. “The Flintstones” was also overseen by Steven Spielberg’s production company, Amblin Entertainment, so the director was easily able to direct his crew to Levant’s film. Before “Jurassic Park,” Cundey had photographed such blockbuster films as “Back to the Future,” “Hook,” “Road House” and numerous films by John Carpenter, including “The Thing”, “Halloween,” “The Fog,” “Escape from New York,” and “Big Trouble in Chinatown.” He wasn’t a sloppy guy.

Lantieri, meanwhile, worked on effects for “Hook,” “Bram Stoker’s Dracula,” “Death Becomes Her,” “Who Framed Roger Rabbit,” “Star Trek IV: Homecoming” and “Fright Night” “. He was a massive presence in the Hollywood special effects community.

There’s no arguing that “The Flintstones” doesn’t possess a unique aesthetic. Everything seems artificial and plasticky, a bit like an amusement park attraction. Perhaps this fit the aesthetic of a live-action adaptation of a low-budget 1960s cartoon show; no one wants to see the “realistic and gritty” version of the “Flintstones”.

Having access to such talented people was disappointing for Levant. At this point in his career he had only directed “Problem Child 2” and “Beethoven”, so “The Flintstones” was a huge production for him. “When you work with these high-level people,” he said, “it forces you to elevate your game.”

Levant was able to apply his lessons in his next film, 1996’s “Jingle All the Way,” an infamous Arnold Schwarzenegger Christmas vehicle. That also made a decent amount of money despite being panned by critics.



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