"This is a dream come true," the actor says of his role on Netflix's animated Jurassic Park series.

By Sydney Bucksbaum
September 15, 2020 at 11:00 AM EDT
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Jurassic World Camp Cretaceous
Credit: Netflix

Glen Powell has been running from dinosaurs his whole life. And now he's finally getting to put that skill to use in Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous.

The actor voices one of the lead characters in Netflix's new Jurassic Park animated series, which takes place on Isla Nublar during the events of Jurassic World. And Powell calls his role as camp counselor Dave "a dream come true" for many reasons. "When I run, I play movie soundtracks, and Jurassic Park is one of my favorites, so I've been running away from fake dinosaurs for a long time," he tells EW. "Now I finally get to do it for real."

The eight-episode series follows a group of teens who get to go to a summer camp on Isla Nublar when disaster strikes. "I'm the camp counselor, Dave, with my cohort Roxie, played by Jameela Jamil," Powell says. "We're in charge of all these teenagers and when the fences go down and things hit the fan, we try to keep these kids together and safe out of dinosaur mouths." Powell laughs as he adds, "I'm the oldest of about 13 cousins, so I've sort of been a camp counselor for a long time, so I understood that energy very well."

After voicing a fan-favorite character in All Hail King Julien, the Netflix series based on the Madagascar film franchise, Powell was handpicked for Camp Cretaceous. "They actually wrote this part for me," he says. "So it was easy and fun for me to go into the booth and play around. But when you're running away from dinosaurs, there are so many different versions of how scared you need to be, so I think I did like 50 different screams and pants and grunts. You get a little lightheaded on the drive home for sure."

Powell and Dave share some similarities — Powell admits his love of "bad dad jokes" really gets to shine with this new character — but what's really blowing his mind is how he's now part of the Jurassic Park world. "I'm a huge fan of Jurassic Park, so much so that I did a whole project on it when I was in like second or third grade," he says. "I was so obsessed with it. And [executive producer] Colin Trevorrow is just as much of a Jurassic Park nerd as I am and is always thinking about ways to grow it, and the show is just the perfect example of the mind of Steven Spielberg and Colin coming together."

Glen Powell
Credit: Jemal Countess/FilmMagic

Powell, who will soon star alongside Tom Cruise in Top Gun: Maverick, is excited to see how his roles in both that highly anticipated film and this Netflix series bring new fans to beloved franchises. "One of the things I've enjoyed with Top Gun is letting someone experience something you love so much in an entirely new world, and with Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous, you can catch an entirely new audience that falls in love with this world and dinosaurs," he says. "It's what cinema can be, transformative and transport you to another time and place. There is going to be a whole lot of new fans from this, and I'm so excited about that because it's my favorite."

That's why Powell can't wait to share Camp Cretaceous with two very important people in his life. "I have a niece and nephew who actually just turned 4 years old today, and while the show is scary in a lot of ways, the [Jurassic World] movies are getting darker and darker," he says. "This is something that the whole family can watch, it's not all about the blood and guts. It's a lot more approachable, whereas if I showed my niece and nephew Jurassic World, my sister would keep me away from those kids for a while."

All eight episodes of Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous will be available Sept. 18 on Netflix. Check out an exclusive sneak peek above.

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