Michael Crichton Wife: A Tribute from His Wife, Sherri

Michael Crichton Wife: A Tribute from His Wife, Sherri

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Written By Joe Martin

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When renowned author and director Michael Crichton died of cancer in 2008 at the age of 66, he left behind not only a significant cultural legacy but also a young family. His widow, Sherri Crichton, was pregnant with their son, John Michael Todd Crichton, at the time. Since then,

Sherri has dedicated herself to ensuring that their son knows his father through the extensive body of work Michael left behind. A crucial part of this endeavor is the posthumous release of Michael’s last novel, Eruption, co-written by James Patterson and set to be released on June 3.

Completing Michael Crichton’s Unfinished Work

Michael Crichton, the mastermind behind iconic works like Jurassic Park, The Andromeda Strain, Congo, and the TV medical drama ER, had begun working on Eruption in 1994. He continued to develop it intermittently over the next 14 years.

However, the manuscript was unfinished at the time of his death. Sherri Crichton spent 15 years searching for the perfect collaborator to complete this work, and she found that in James Patterson. Known for his bestselling thrillers such as Along Came a Spider and Kiss the Girls, Patterson possessed both the skill and the stature needed to bring Michael’s vision to life.

The Significance of Eruption

Eruption is set on the Big Island of Hawaii, where a historic volcanic event forms the backdrop for a gripping narrative involving a man-made disaster. This blend of natural and human-made threats is a hallmark of Crichton’s work, combining science and suspense in a compelling story.

Sherri is confident that Michael would be proud of this final project. “Jim did such an extraordinary job,” she told PEOPLE magazine. “I think this is a story that clearly was important to him, and it is undeserving of sitting in a file. I think he would be very excited that it’s out and being told with such an incredible partner as Jim.”

Sherri Crichton’s Dedication to Michael’s Legacy

Sherri’s dedication to preserving Michael Crichton’s legacy is evident not only in her efforts to complete Eruption but also in the creation of the Official Crichton Archives. This archive is intended to systematically preserve and honor Michael’s vast body of work.

“When we took our vows in Hawaii, it was as partners for life,” Sherri explains. “I feel like now I’ve continued to be his partner, though he’s not here physically. But we can be partners raising our son because Michael is just a plethora of information and knowledge.”

A Mother’s Effort to Connect Her Son with His Father

Sherri has always encouraged her son, John Michael Jr., to appreciate his father’s work and legacy. She recounts a poignant moment from when John Michael was about eight years old. They were driving down Santa Monica Boulevard and noticed two buses adorned with advertisements for Westworld and Jurassic Park.

She pointed them out to her son and said, “This is your father!” highlighting the enduring impact of Michael’s creations on popular culture. Now 16, John Michael Jr. shares his mother’s excitement about the release of Eruption. “It’s very exciting for him,” Sherri says. “He’s like, ‘One day I’m going to do this, too.’ And I’m like, ‘You might learn from Jim himself.’”

Ensuring the Legacy Lives On

While John Michael Jr. is currently more focused on his school finals and summer plans, Sherri ensures that Michael’s legacy is always within reach for him and his half-sister, Taylor Anne, from Michael’s previous marriage.

Sherri emphasizes the importance of both children understanding their father’s passion and what drove his creativity. “It’s really important for his children to have a real understanding of the way he worked and how it made him tick,” she notes.

Michael Crichton’s Enduring Influence

Michael Crichton’s influence continues to resonate across various media. His books remain bestsellers, and his films have left an indelible mark on Hollywood. The TV adaptation of Westworld and the ongoing success of Jurassic Park are testaments to his enduring cultural footprint.

James Patterson, with his talent for crafting thrilling stories, was an ideal choice to complete Eruption. His respect for Crichton’s work and prolific career made him a fitting partner to bring the unfinished manuscript to fruition.

A Labor of Love

Sherri’s collaboration with Patterson was deeply personal. She wanted to ensure that Michael’s final story was told with the same excitement and detail he would have given it. “Jim did such an extraordinary job,” she said. “I think this is a story that clearly was important to Michael.” Her efforts reflect a dedication not only to her late husband’s legacy but also to providing a meaningful connection for their son.

Final Novel Release

Eruption, set to release on June 3 by Little, Brown, and Company, is available for preorder now. This final novel from Michael Crichton promises to be a thrilling addition to his remarkable body of work, ensuring that his legacy continues to inspire and entertain.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the significance of the novel Eruption?

Eruption is significant because it is the final work of Michael Crichton, completed posthumously by James Patterson. The novel combines Crichton’s signature elements of science and suspense, set against the dramatic backdrop of a volcanic event in Hawaii.

How did Sherri Crichton contribute to the completion of Eruption?

Sherri Crichton played a crucial role by finding the right collaborator to complete her late husband’s unfinished manuscript. She chose James Patterson for his ability to honor Michael’s vision and bring the story to life authentically.

What efforts has Sherri Crichton made to preserve Michael Crichton’s legacy?

Sherri has created the Official Crichton Archives to systematically preserve Michael’s body of work. She has also actively involved their son, John Michael Jr., in understanding and appreciating his father’s contributions to literature and film.

How has John Michael Jr. been introduced to his father’s work?

Sherri has encouraged her son’s interest in Michael’s work from a young age, sharing moments that highlight Michael’s impact on popular culture and ensuring that John Michael Jr. understands the significance of his father’s legacy.

What is the Official Crichton Archives?

The Official Crichton Archives is an initiative by Sherri Crichton to preserve and honor Michael Crichton’s extensive body of work. It serves as a resource for understanding his contributions and ensuring his legacy continues to inspire future generations.

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