The Fun Story Behind Samuel L. Jackson's Classic JURASSIC PARK Line, "Hold on To Your Butts"



One of Samuel L. Jackson’s most classic movie lines that is quoted by people all the time is when he says, “Hold on to your butts”, in Steven Spielberg’s Jurassic Park. The actor played Ray Arnold, the chief engineer at Jurassic Park.

Thanks to screenwriter David Koepp, we now know the story behind that line and how it came to exist. We can all thank director Robert Zemeckis for that. While a guest on the ReelBlend podcast, Koepp was asked what his favorite line that he ever wrote for a movie was, and this was his response:

“One is a very simple line, it’s only four words, but I like the way it came to be in the movie in that people liked it. I was finishing Death Becomes Her when I was writing Jurassic Park, and we had an ending that was really disastrous at first from one of these horrible test screenings where they almost kill you. So we’d very quickly gone out to shoot a new ending for the movie, but there was little time before the movie came out, so we were in the dailies of the reshoots, and there was gonna be no opportunity to redo the reshoots. So this was it, this really had to work. And we sat down in the dailies, and as the lights were going down, Bob Zemeckis said, ‘Hold onto your butts.’ I happened to be working on the script at that time, and I was like, ‘Oh, I love that.’ I went back and I typed it into the script immediately, and then Sam Jackson said it. I don’t think I ever told Zemeckis that, but that’s his line.”

So, thanks to Robert Zemeckis this delightful line of movie dialogue exists in the world and the world is a better place because of it. Makes me wonder what Ray Arnold would have said in the film if “Hold on to your butts” never came about.