Just imagine if, right here in 2015, we somehow came across a perfectly preserved 65-million-year-old Tyrannosaurus Rex corpse and had the chance to dissect the creature’s massive body to learn its secrets. How amazing would that be?

Pretty amazing indeed, if the National Geographic Channel’s T. rex Autopsy (world premiere Sunday, June 7th at 9/8c) is any indication.

Because, you see, a production company called Impossible Factual teamed up with an effects outfit called Crawley Creatures to mimic this exact scenario. And after loads of consultation with experts, six months and 10,000 hours of painstaking work, they had it: a fierce, authentic, life-size T. rex replica—full of blood and bones and protoplasmic organs and ready for dissection.

Nat Geo invited us to the London-based set of the program to check out the action as it happened. What follows is a sneak peek at some of the eye-popping, gruesome and ultimately awesome sights we saw.

From there, they brought in a team of true professionals—top-notch paleontologists and one very experienced vet—to put the beast under the knife… and, as it turned out, the chainsaw.

Best of all, Nat Geo invited us to the London-based set of the program to check out the action as it happened. What follows is a sneak peek at some of the eye-popping, gruesome and ultimately awesome sights we saw.

One word of warning before you scroll down: This stuff isn’t for the faint of heart or weak of stomach. Need we remind you, they cut open a giant dinosaur, people!

Meet the Beast
Crawley Creatures head Jez Gibson-Harris worked on the original Jabba the Hutt, but building the King of the Tyrant Lizards was, quite literally, a whole other animal. A few key stats: 43 feet long, 13 feet tall, with legs more than two feet wide and 50 flesh-ripping serrated teeth. Hey, if you’re going to recreated one of the largest land carnivores of all time, might as well do it right!

Meet the Team
This fantastic four is ready for action. Far left, you’ve got Matthew T. Mossbrucker, director and chief curator of Colorado’s Morrison Natural History Museum. Next to him is Dr. Steve Brusatte, vertebrate paleontologist and evolutionary biologist Scotland’s University of Edinburgh. Far right is Dr. Tori Herridge, dwarf elephant expert and paleobiologist at Natural History Museum London. And center, wielding the chainsaw, is Dr. Luke Gamble, CEO of Worldwide Veterinary Service and all-around badass.

Age Verification
Job one? Find out how old the beast was when it dies. Fun fact: Much like trees, dino bones feature rings that help scientists uncover this information—one ring per year. So with no hesitation, Gamble got to work cutting through a leg with his chainsaw. Fun fact #2: Professor John Hutchinson, a professor of evolutionary biomechanics at the University of London’s Royal Veterinary College, theorizes that the beast’s two-ton legs could propel it up to 25 miles per hour. Behind the scenes trivia: The leg was so thick that chainsaw actually jammed and lost its chain during the first pass.

Gut Check
Job two? Getting into the belly of the beast with a blade. On set, this particular job took the team quite a lot of work, as it had to make its way past the croc-like gastralia (extra ribs that provide abdominal protection) and the peritoneum (a sack that keeps all the organs in place) to really open things up. And if you think this looks like a lot of blood, wait till you see the next shot…

Under the Hood
See what we mean? The gang literally cut a flap into the belly and suspended it like a canopy in order to crawl inside and dig out internal organs like the small intestine, a lung and the heart. To do this kind of work, you clearly can’t be afraid to get your hands dirty—or any other part of your body, for that matter.

Stomach Pains
Here, Mossbrucker and Brusatte pull out the hefty stomach of the T. rex, which featured two chambers to help it digest freshly ripped chunks of meat. Pretty handy when you need 50,000 calories a day to sustain your metabolism. Eat that, Michael Phelps!

Dental Work
Brusatte and Herridge use a car jack to pry open T. rex’s jaws and check out its chompers. A few things you might not know: T. rex had no molars for chewing, instead using its 12-inch serrated fangs to rip chunks of flesh and then swallow it whole like a Komodo dragon does. Also, T. rex replaced its teeth—which it sometimes swallowed in the midst of feasting—throughout its life like a shark does. Oh, and the jaw was strong enough to bite through a Land Rover. Isn’t that adorable?

Cardiac Kids
Gamble begins slicing open the heart to get a look inside. Relative to its body size, T. rex’s heart is rather small, meaning it had to be ultra-efficient in order to pump blood throughout the beast’s imposing frame.

Open Heart Surgery
What enabled that heart to be so efficient? Four chambers, the same number that birds possess, and one more than crocodiles have. Other avian features, like air sacs in its lungs and proto-feathers on its back, lend support to the idea that T. rex was some sort of bizarre hybrid of bird and reptile.

Carnivore Carnage
As this final behind-the-scenes photo indicates, the crew did quite a number on this cadaver—and we didn’t even show you their exploration of other facets, including eyeballs and gender. But as much as we’ve learned about how T. rex lived, the question remains: How did this one die? You’ll just have to check out the show to find out!