Deinonychus was the first of the raptors (technically called Dromaeosauridae) to be known from a nearly complete skeleton. Velociraptor had been discovered 40 years earlier but was known only from a skull and a few bones of its hands and feet.
The skeleton of Deinonychus were first to show the now infamous sickle-shaped retractable foot claw (8 inch), used for ripping open the skin of a victim, causing the preys guts be ripped and with a considerable amount of damage. Deinonychus also had a big bite, with over 60 knife-like teeth. Although with a deadly bite, its arms and legs would be most powerful and could rear on one leg and kick an opponent.
Dr. John Ostrom discovered Deinonychus in 1964. Dr. Ostrom believed that this dinosaur was an agile, swift predator, like a warm-blooded mammal, than a cold-blooded reptile.
In The Lost World: Jurassic Park (console game), Deinonychus appears as an enemy. It bears a resemblance to Velociraptor that appeared as well, and different in coloration. Oddly, it is smaller than Velociraptor, rather than being bigger. They are called "Deinon-Raptor", likely to further differentiate Velociraptor.
In Jurassic Park III: Park Builder, Deinonychus appears and can be recreated from Paleo-DNA.
Deinonychus was the primary basis for the novel canon's Velociraptors and in turn the raptors briefly seen in the films.
Jurassic Park novel author Michael Crichton visited John Ostrom, the discoverer of Deinonychus, when doing research for the novel. Ostrom said that Crichton's Velociraptor was based upon Deinonychus in "almost every detail" and Crichton had called him to inform him that he had renamed Deinonychus in his novel to Velociraptor, because he felt it sounded "more dramatic".
During the production of the Jurassic Park film, Steven Spielberg's production contacted John Ostrom and requested copies of all the technical papers that Ostrom had done of Deinonychus. Unlike the novel, the raptors briefly seen in the film were to be properly named Deinonychus, and Mark Crash McCreery had made concept art of this known raptor in 1991. But later in pre-production, it was ultimately renamed to Velociraptor, like in the novel and McCreery's concept art was later attributed to this newly known named dromaeosaurid.