May 2, 2019 8:00 pm
“Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn’t stop to think if they should.”
It’s one of the best movie quotes. It’s one of the best movies. And it was uttered by one of the coolest characters ever put on screen. On this week’s episode of StarTalk Radio, Neil deGrasse Tyson sits down with the Captain of Cool himself, Jeff Goldblum, to discuss his iconic roles in Jurassic Park and Independence Day.
To put the science in science fiction, Neil is joined by paleomammologist Ross MacPhee, economist Raphaële Chappe, Kelly Fast, Ph.D., Program Manager in the Planetary Defense Coordination Office at NASA, and comic co-host Chuck Nice.
To start, Jeff tells us about his influence on his famous character in Jurassic Park, Dr. Ian Malcolm. Neil and Jeff break down how Dr. Malcolm broke stereotypes of how scientists were portrayed in film. You’ll learn about the spike of public interest in dinosaurs after Jurassic Park was released. Ross explains some big real life discoveries in the fossil world including the trend toward genetics and DNA research.
We ponder de-extinction: should we bring back the dinosaurs if we can? Should we bring back any species if we can? Hasn’t nature already made its decision? Bill Nye the Science Guy drops by to give his thoughts on our ability to resurrect the dead. Raphaële helps us understand the Chaos theory. We ask, is chaos a good thing?
Then, we switch gears from pre-history to outer space. Neil and Jeff explore Jeff’s character in Independence Day, David Levinson. You’ll hear why Jeff believes non-violence is the solution. Neil argues why non-violence can’t protect us from asteroids and we find out if NASA has a plan in place to do just that. All that, plus, Neil gives us a cosmic perspective on our ability to “do better than the hand nature deals us.”
Please join us tomorrow night for Making Science Cool, with Jeff Goldblum at 7pm ET right here on our website, as well as on Apple Podcasts, Google Play Music, SoundCloud, Spotify, Stitcher, and TuneIn. If you’re an All-Access subscriber, you can listen to this episode ad-free at 7pm, too.
That’s it for now. Keep Looking Up!