The rare skeleton of a dinosaur that inspired the villains of Jurassic Park The film sold for $12.4 million when it went under the hammer.
The bone of Deinonychus antirrhopus, made famous in the hit movie, sold at Christie’s for more than double the guide price of $6 million.
Jurassic Park Author Michael Crichton admits that he named the creature in his book and 1993 film “Velociraptor” because it was more dramatic than Deinonychus.
The skeleton contains 126 real bones and the rest of the bones, including most of the skull, have been reconstructed.
The auction house said the fossil, nicknamed Hector, was Deinonychus’ first public sale. Deinonychus is described as an agile bipedal dinosaur known for having claws on its feet.
Hector was discovered 10 years ago on a private estate in Montana by self-taught paleontologists Jack and Roberta Owen about 110 million years ago.
The most recent owner remained anonymous during the sale.
“I didn’t know I was going to Christie,” said 69-year-old Owen. New York Times.
He and his wife made a deal with a landlord who allowed them to sell the land in return for a portion of every profit they found.
The couple first found a piece of bone where they had found the other two animals and carefully excavated it using a scalpel and toothbrush.
He told the newspaper that he was paid much less than the most recent sale price, but his work was never motivated by money.
“It’s about hunting. It’s about discovery,” he said. “You’re the only human in the world to have ever touched that animal, and it’s priceless.”
In 2020, Christie’s auctioned off a T. Rex skull named Stan for a record $31.8 million. This is nearly four times the estimated $8 million.