back to article Michael Crichton dead at 66

Michael Crichton - the author, filmmaker, and television producer best known for his 1990 novel Jurassic Park - is dead at the age of 66. According to a statement released by his family, Crichton was privately battling cancer. "While the world knew him as a great story teller that challenged our preconceived notions about the …


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  1. Duckorange

    Hopefully, he was bitten by a mosquito

    ...So future civilisations may clone him in years to come.

    Yeah, first class ticket to Hell, please.

  2. Jon Tocker


    I liked his novels, pity he died at such a young age.

  3. Nordrick Framelhammer

    Yet another great writer dies

    Sadly we lose another great writer.

    The thing I liked about his books is that they were very believable. You could easily get lost in them due to the way he wove his story. He was able to make you feel something for each of his characters.


  4. tuna
    Dead Vulture


    I always thought he was a Brit, great writer nonetheless.

    Well, time to unplug and reread The Terminal Man. It's been a couple decades, and yet it's so much more pertinent today.

    RIP, Chictonosaurus.

  5. Dave


    Michael Crichton is (was) one of my favourite authors. His novels and stories always appealed to me and I loved his ability to mix current events and technology. It is a great shame, as I always would look forward to his new work.

    My sincere sympathies go to his family.

  6. Wade Burchette

    Oh wow.

    I really liked Crichton's books. I loved it because he mixed science fact with science fiction. I was hoping for a new book soon.

  7. IR

    It's not true

    It's all just a conspiratorial fraud to make money. I've written a book about it, please buy it.

    Michael Crichton falls into the category (along with Stephen King) of having interesting and well written books that just end badly every time. Sphere was the worst example of his I read.

  8. Brian


    His books were among the best scientifically based fiction written in the past few decades - you could read most of them without seething at technical inaccuracy, and they were well plotted too.

    My sympathy goes to his kin.

  9. Thomas Shinnick
    Thumb Up

    A'viking we went...

    It seems to always be true that there is more to the person than anyone sees. Unbelievable to me, there's been no mention of "Eaters of the Dead", which you may remember as the movie "The 13th Warrior". If you haven't seen the movie yet, you have denied yourself much pleasure. Such a masterful adaptation of myth that you won't recognize its humble origins. For while in medical school Crichton re-imagined an old Anglo-Saxon tale and made it live. Scholars called it a hoax ('course with a "Latin source" whose two title words meant 'hoax' you have to wonder about 'scholars'), Hollywood called it a failure, but you'll call it gold.

    To Crichton, "...where the brave may live forever."

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Stephen King?

    Interesting and well written books? You insult literature, you cad.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Dead Vulture

    Pity he lost the plot

    With climate change denial. I used to think he was a smart guy. Not since that rubbish.

  12. Inspector Clouseau

    @Stephen King?

    Have to agree with you Mr Coward. Stephen King must be one of the world's worst authors.

    I would rather read a cornflakes packet. Far more substance.

  13. Bob Calder

    It was indeed fun 'till _State of Fear_ when...

    He interviewed several climatologists and settled on John Milloy as his mentor. The admixture of scientific fact and fantasy became too much to bear and his intellect broke under the load, spewing forth Milloy's drek. Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt. There were never truer words spoken when applied to that book.

    So we look back on the death of a literary figure, trying to decide whether to place the coins on his eyelids. Or not.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Dead Vulture


    He actually showed what a total myth climate change is. New religion for the thickies!

  15. IR


    I didn't mean to say that King was a good writer (although a couple of his books turned into films were pretty good, and only a couple, Pet Cemetary has to be the worst film ever), but that the authors share the inability to make a half decent ending.

  16. Mr Larrington


    Only last week I was looking to re-read "Airframe", but the Popular Culture Monkey seems to have half-inched off the bookshelf.

  17. BlueGreen

    Crichton the illiterate

    I started some books, failed to finish some, hated the lot. His characters failed to be at all credible, his plots sucked, his ideas (jurassic park excepted) sucked, he just couldn't write.

    @Thomas Shinnick:

    on your recommendation I checked out Tomatoes (generally found wanting) & then Wiki. Assuming this isn't vandalism, here's an extract from the latter <>:


    The outcome of this film's production disappointed Omar Sharif so much that he retired from film acting. He did not take a role in a major film until 2003's Monsieur Ibrahim.:

    "After my small role in The 13th Warrior, I said to myself, 'Let us stop this nonsense, these meal tickets that we do because it pays well.' I thought, 'Unless I find a stupendous film that I love and that makes me want to leave home to do, I will stop.' Bad pictures are very humiliating, I was really sick. It is terrifying to have to do the dialogue from bad scripts, to face a director who does not know what he is doing, in a film so bad that it is not even worth exploring." [1]


    Why does mediocrity thrive?

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Dead Vulture

    13th Warrior

    Was great. I gave up on his books though.

    Still, a prolofoc and popular author who managed to persuade his publishers that his SF was actually mainstream. Kudos.

  19. Andre Labuschagne

    State of Fear

    @all who made comments re: Crichton's skepticism around Global Warming;

    Actually Michael Crichton at the epilogue to State of Fear did not deny global warming as a threat. He made the point that we should be careful of research commissioned by entities with a vested interest in the outcome of the research.

  20. Gavin McMenemy

    No mention of West World?

    This was another seminal Crichton work...

    Though I admired his earlier work I didn't think much of his later efforts.

    Still; a great creative mind now departed.

  21. Chris

    A real shame!

    I too really enjoyed his books. And although Jurassic Park was a fun film, the book had more science in it to back up the plausibility of cloning dinosaurs. His medical background really shows through in the attention to detail he put in his books.

    He will be missed. RIP.

    "Its a Unix system. I know this!" ( for the IT angle)

  22. Dan
    Thumb Down


    Michael Crichton's books were huge fun, I particularly liked Terminal Man, Airframe, Prey, State of Fear (I'm more inclined to believe this novel than some of the climate change twaddle being spouted elsewhere) and that Japanese one from ages ago. Only recently I was scanning the shelves in Waterstones to see if he had released anything new. RIP.

  23. Anonymous Coward

    What a shame... now we'll never know what happens to Odd.

    I liked Odd Thomas. Now we'll never know how the story ends...

    Rest in peace Michael.

  24. Neil

    New book

    I believe there is a new book scheduled for end of Nov / beginning of Dec. I presume (hope) this will still be released.

  25. Neil Barrett

    To Stefan Paetow re Odd Thomas

    erm... Odd Thomas is a Dean L Koontz creation. So there will be another one along in 12-18 months.

  26. Carl Pearson


    AFAIK, he never wrote WestWorld, but it was a pretty good movie, like something he might have written. Similarly, Coma was actually a Robin Cook novel, but he did a pretty good job directing it.

    Sad to see another author go. Have to agree with some of the other comments, he was a good writer, but had a lot of crappy endings.

    My favorite would probably have to be Eaters of the Dead, though that was so atypical of his work. Timeline & Sphere were rubbish. Disclosure & Prey amongst the better of his later works. For the older stuff, I'd have to go with Terminal Man.

    We'll miss you, Michael!

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    'Eaters of the Dead'

    Thomas Shinnick wrote: 're-imagined an old Anglo-Saxon tale'.

    Actually it's based on an incomplete account by the Arab Ibn Fadlan of his encounters with Swedes ;) Crichton's brilliant idea was to start his book where the Ibn Fadlan account suddenly breaks off.

    The book is excellent, the movie much less so. An annotated version of the original Ibn Fadlan narrative is here:

  28. David Kesterson

    Five Patients

    Crichton also the author of "Five Patients" a non-fiction account that is documentary of medical care in the US in the late Sixties. "State of Fear" provides an apt description of the ruthlessness employed by anthropogenic global warming fundamentalists, the true believers.

  29. M Neligan

    I enjoyed

    Andromeda Strain, Westworld, Jurassic Park, 13th Warrior (be quiet, Omar). Thanks, Michael.

  30. DZ-Jay

    Goodbye, Mr. Crichton

    I read a lot of your books, and enjoyed them immensely. From "A Case of Need", "The Andromeda Strain", and "Eaters of the Dead"; to "Rising Sun", "Jurassic Park", and "Airframe". I also enjoyed and admired your handywork in such great, through-provoking, and yes, entertaining films such as "Coma", "Westworld", and "Looker", which provide not only a thrilling experience, but social commentary on the human condition.

    My warmest regards go to your family and friends; may you rest in peace. You will surely be missed.


  31. Anonymous Coward

    still, sad to see him go so soon

    Best wishes to his family. He will be missed by many of us.

  32. J


    Unfortunately, the only book of his I've read was "State of Fear", which was crap... Entertaining, easy to read, sure. But the cheap literary tricks he uses are SO cheesy, SO obvious... Shallow characters with obvious motives, all that. The "science" was crap too -- not even the biggest sceptics with funding from fossil-fuel companies deny any more that it is getting warmer, because it's quite impossible to have a brain and do so; they now deny it's human caused. And the fact he put a disclaimer at the end does not excuse the rest of the book.

    I wonder if his other books are like that.

    Anyway, sympathies to his family and friends.

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