Back in 2000, Dismals Canyon was chosen as one of the shooting locations for the filming of the Discovery Channel special, "When Dinosaurs Roamed America" .
The canyon was selected because its vegetation and broad leaf trees are typical of those that existed when dinosaurs roamed the Earth some 100 to 200 million years ago. The canyon's tall trees and ferns are similar to fossils paleontologists have found near dinosaur relics.
About the film:
WHEN DINOSAURS ROAMED AMERICA introduces never-before-seen dinosaurs based on newly discovered fossils that help to fill in a 30 million-year gap in North American history. Using even more advanced "eye-popping technical wizardry" than the critically acclaimed, mega-hit "Walking with Dinosaurs," Discovery Channel catapulted viewers once more back in time to WHEN DINOSAURS ROAMED AMERICA. Using state-of-the-art computer imagery and exotic, worldwide location shooting, the two-hour special paints a visually stunning, scientifically based prehistoric panorama of when these creatures roamed our continent, from Maine to Montana, Connecticut to Colorado.
Dissolving from modern-day city-scapes in North America to a recreation of what our land looked like many millions of years ago, WHEN DINOSAURS ROAMED AMERICA will show how dinosaurs lived and died right in our own backyard. Through the computer-generated artistry of a team of more than 20 leading animators, headed by Don Waller (Disney’s "Dinosaur"), the program also goes inside dinosaurs to reveal what paleontologists know from their latest fossil finds. WHEN DINOSAURS ROAMED AMERICA also portrays a complete prehistoric ecosystem. The background locations for the program are as authentic as possible and were filmed around the world where ancient plant species still exist.
The program’s team of paleontologists and program consultants includes Jim Kirkland and Doug Wolfe -- who are known for their significant finds Utahraptor and Zuniceratops christopheri, respectively. They are among the scientists who appear on the program in "paleo-bites…" segments which enhance information within the program and aid in the viewers understanding of dinosaurs and the world they lived in.
The areas and periods covered are:
The program is produced by Emmy-winning filmmaker Pierre de Lespinois. Pierre de Lespinois is a multiple award-winning producer/director whose filmmaking adventures have taken him from the top of the Himalayas, Andes and Alps down to a mile below the ocean’s surface. Pierre’s credits include; The Challengers, an action-adventure series syndicated to more than sixty countries, and he is the creator of several primetime network specials, including Dolphins, Whales and Us for CBS, the Emmy-winning Tim McCarver’s World of Adventure for ABC, and the The Triangle for Tristar Pictures. His television series, The Secret Adventures of Jules Verne, was awarded the First Golden Laurel Award by the Producers Guild. Pierre is also known for Discovery Channel’s Inside the Space Station and America’s Great Parks.