‘Jurassic Park’ Star Sam Neill Names His Farm Animals After Celebs For This Strange Reason

JURASSIC PARK, Sam Neill, 1993
Universal/Everett Collection

76-year-old Sam Neill isn’t just into dinosaurs. He has a farm in New Zealand and raises all kinds of animals. The Jurrasic Park star recently explained that he names his chickens, cows, and pigs after A-list celebrities, many of them former co-stars, for a very good reason. He admitted, “It’s an insurance policy. Because if you name a chicken Meryl Streep, in all fairness, you can’t eat Meryl Streep.”

He also has animals named Anjelica Huston, Helena Bonham Carter, Laura Dern, and Charlie Pickering, to name a few. While Neill lives a quieter life these days, enjoying time with his family, he recently revealed in his new memoir that he is battling stage-three blood cancer.

SWEET REVENGE, Helena Bonham Carter, Sam Neill, 1998

Everett Collection

Neill noticed that he had some lumps on the glands in his neck while doing a publicity tour for Jurassic World Dominion. He went to the doctor straight away and unfortunately, tests revealed that he had angioimmunoblastic T-cell lymphoma. He said that instead of feeling sorry for himself, he decided to write a book about his life to share with his family, friends, and fans.


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He said that writing his memoir, called “Did I Ever Tell You This?” was a good distraction and helped him to find purpose. He finished and released it in record time, without a ghostwriter. While Neill is now in remission, he said that he will be on chemotherapy medication for the rest of his life and he is unsure of how much more time he has left. Doctors have said the remission is likely only temporary. Although some of his treatments are intense, he said he has no plans to retire as of now.

A CRY IN THE DARK, Sam Neill, Meryl Streep, 1988

Everett Collection

He concluded, “I’m not afraid to die. But it would annoy me. Because I’d really like another decade or two, you know? We’ve built all these lovely terraces, we’ve got these olive trees and cypresses, and I want to be around to see it all mature. And I’ve got my lovely little grandchildren. I want to see them get big. But as for the dying? I couldn’t care less.”

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July 2019

Celebrate the biggest summer movies of the ’80s, when moviegoing morphed from mere entertainment to blockbuster events.

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