It only took ‘Jumanji’ 22 years to get a (sort of) sequel in the form of ‘Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle,’ the low key family action flick that Sony released somewhat quietly in December in the face of the behemoth ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’. But against all odds, ‘Welcome to the Jungle’ has become a phenomenon in its own right; Sony’s highest-grossing non-Spider-Man movie. It’s one of the rare movies that didn’t open at #1 its first weekend, but later ascended to that spot and even rarer still, it slipped for one week against ‘Maze Runner: The Death Cure’ only to return to #1 the following week. It’s also the first film since 1998 (‘Titanic’) to be released in December and reign at the top in February. So we won’t have to wait 22 more years to see another ‘Jumanji’. Sony is already moving forward with sequel plans, and are in negotiations with Scott Rosenberg and Jeff Pinkner to return as writers. The pair worked on ‘Welcome to the Jungle’ along with Chris McKenna and Erik Sommers. Director Jake Kasdan is also expected to return.
Stars Dwayne Johnson, Jack Black, Karen Gillan and Kevin Hart are also returning, but beyond that, it’s not clear which other cast members will be back. Nick Jonas appeared in a smaller role as Jefferson “Seaplane” McDonough. And, of course, all five were actually video game avatars of teenagers in the real world. Will they keep the same younger cast? Considering that the dichotomy between the avatars and their human controllers was the main source of humor in this film, it might be a good idea to keep the younger actors as well as the big names. For the record, Alex Wolff played Spencer, whose avatar was Johnson’s Dr. Smolder Bravestone, Madison Iseman was Bethany/Professor Sheldon “Shelly” Oberon (Black), Morgan Turner played Martha/Ruby Roundhouse (Gillan) and Ser’Darius Blain played Fridge/Franklin “Mouse” Finbar (Hart). Colin Hanks, who was uncredited, played Alex (Jonas), who was a teenager but had been stuck in the game for over a decade, growing to adulthood in reality (once freed).
Sony has not claimed a release date for the sequel yet. Did you enjoy ‘Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle’? Are you excited at the prospect of a sequel?