Steven Spielberg’s Jaws from 1975 was the beginning of blockbusters: it terrified audiences across the globe to be scared to get into the water and still to this day gets people’s spines to get chills. Jaws is up there along with Star Wars and the Alien Franchise in terms of how much it’s referenced and how much it changed Hollywood. A few years later in 1978, we had Jaws 2 which…was very flawed but having Roy Scheider back to fight off a psychotic shark was still great to watch. Really there was no need for sequels but since Jaws 2 was slightly disappointing, you would think that they would learn from their mistakes with the third movie right?
Um…JAWS 3D everyone! Yeah this movie sucked the big one and is often considered one of the worst sequels of all time. Though really it is a god send in comparison to the fourth movie which features the shark jumping out of the water and roaring like a freaking lion. Fun fact, the roar was taken from a Tom & Jerry cartoon.
Anyway, back to Jaws 3 or Jaws 3D as it was originally titled. Yeah this was at the time in the 80s when for some reason filmmakers thought that every third entry in a horror franchise just had to be in 3D: Friday the 13th Part 3, Amityville 3D, and of course Jaws 3D. I bring this up because I think that the 3D was the reason why this movie failed so hard, they got so caught up in their gimmick that they forgot to actually put focus on the story and characters. Though with the re-release of Jaws 3D on Blu-Ray, the movie finally has be restored to 3D and from what I’ve heard, there are some good 3D moments to enjoy.
The concept for Jaws 3 is a good one: a shark loose in Sea World? I can imagine a lot of potential with that. Like Jurassic Park with sharks but without good direction, effects, and characters it of course fell short. However the original script shows that certain things were a lot better before the final cut.
For example, we have Dennis Quaid playing Michael Brody but really it is just Dennis Quaid playing Dennis Quaid because the writing for the character is so bland and really nothing about him resembles Michael. Well the original script had alternate scenes that better portrayed Michael such as the submarine scene where Michael and Kathryn are exploring the aquarium and Michael began to feel nervous and scared being underwater, unlike the final cut where the submarine scene was just there to marvel at…spectacularly bad special effects (you literally can see parts of the submarine being keyed out as it moves) there was more character to Michael in the script.
Another scene in the script when the first shark appears, Michael gets flashbacks to the scene from the first movie when he saw that man get pulled under by the shark and so he has difficulty getting in. One would think there would be flashbacks to scenes from the second movie but the point is that more connections to events from previous films would have boosted the character of Michael. There was also supposed to be more humor from Michael: more one liners, genuinely funny jokes, etc.
Another change was that there was going to be more frightening scenes with the sharks in this movie such as a chase between the bigger shark and Michael in this cave, a scene where the characters attempt to catch the bigger shark with a net, there was originally going to be an aerial shot above of the water skiers we would see a silhouette of the bigger shark, and instead of the hilariously bad scene of the shark coming at the control room which was clearly meant only for the 3D effect, it was going to be a lot more scary with it just charging at full speed towards the control room window.
When the park opens and visitors go into the underwater tunnels, there was originally going to be a lot more development of the three teenage girls who only got like one scene in the final cut.
If you’re interested, I honestly say you should check out the original script for Jaws 3 because it honestly was pretty decent overall. Definitely no where as good as the original Jaws but I’d say it was as good as Jaws 2. It was definitely better than the crap that we actually got and honestly, anything is still better than Jaws: The Revenge.
So do you think Jaws 3 had any potential or was it dead from the start? Let me know in the comments below. Hope you all enjoyed!
Nerd with a love for movies, tv shows, games, and all kinds of nerdy goodness