The Last Dinosaur

Japan Release: 1977
Running Time:
106 minutes

The Last Dinosaur

Japanese Title

極底探検船: ポーラーボーラ
[Kyokutei Tankensen: Pora-Bora]

Distributor: Production:

Rankin-Bass Productions / Tsuburaya Production

Rich game hunter Masten Thrust leads an expedition to the North Pole to document the miraculous and dangerous discovery that a previous drilling crew uncovered: a lush, hidden world. A land lost by time with dinosaurs and other prehistoric beasts. The five members of the expedition, however, find themselves quickly over their head, stranded in the lost world after a tyrannosaurus rex removes their transportation vehicle, the Polar-Borer, and begins to stalk the last members...

Live Action Science Fiction

Box Office - Stock Footage - DVDs - CDs - Pictures - Background - Concept Art - Cut Scenes - Reviews


International Title

The Last Dinosaur

Initial US Title

The Last Dinosaur
US Distributor: ABC (1977) / Time: 95 Minutes

Alternate Titles

Expedition Under the Pole: Polar-Borer
[Literal translation]


Aliens, SDF & Misc.



Directed by Tsugunobu Kotani, Alexander Grasshoff
Writing credits William Overgard
Produced by Noboru Tsuburaya, Arthur Rankin Jr., Jules Bass, Kazuyoshi Kasai, Benni Korzen, Kinshiro Ohkubo, Masaki Izuka
Music by Kenjiro Hirose, Maury Laws, Nancy Wilson
Cinematography by Shoji Ueda
Film Editing by Minoru Kozono, Yoshitami Kuroiwa, Tatsuji Nakashizu
Production Design by Kazuhiko Fujiwara
Assistant Director Shohei Tojo
Director of Special Effects Kazuo Sagawa
Assistant Director of Special Effects Yoshiyuki Yoshimura
Masten Thrust Jr. Richard Boone
Francesca Banks, Photographer Joan Van Ark
Chuck Wade Steven Keats
Bunta Luther Rackley
Hazel, Primal Woman Masumi Sekiya
Hal, Mother 1 Chief Technician William Ross
Barney Carl Hansen
Kawamoto, Doctor Tetsu Nakamura
Mother 1 Captain Don Maloney
Reporter Vanessa Cristina
Primal Man Leader Shunsuke Kariya
- Nancy Magsig
- James Dale
- Gary Gundersen
- Hyoe Enoki


DVDs and Blu-rays

United States Region 1 The Last Dinosaur Warner Bros. (2011) Order
Japan Region 2 Expedition Under the Pole: Polar-Borer Toho (2009)

Background and Trivia

  • On June 20th, 1997, Rankin/Bass Productions registered the film with the US copyright office with the registration number PA0000844990. The title used was "The Last Dinosaur".
  • Alex Grasshoff was to be one of the directors of the movie. Grasshoff became infamous for winning an Oscar for his documentary The Young Americans that was then taken away after it was learned the movie actually released theatrically the year before rather than the year it was submitted as an Oscar contender. Grasshoff was eventually fired from the production and replaced by Tsugunobu Kotani. This is referenced in Age of the Gods (self-published).
  • Writer William Thomas Overgard originally pitched the idea of the movie in 1975 to ABC. The network shelved it, though, in favor of pursuing a remake of King Kong. Paramount and Universal, though, made headlines shortly afterwards for doing the same thing, causing ABC to revisit The Last Dinosaur concept. Noted in Age of the Gods (self-published).
  • Was intended for a theatrical release in the United States, however, eventually premiered on the ABC network on February 11th, 1977. It earned an impressive 41 share in its ratings. In fact, it was the 24th highest rated in terms of audience size of the movies broadcast on TV in the US from a period tracking movies shown from September 20th, 1976 to September 4th, 1977. Cited in Age of the Gods (self-published).