Sony Pictures chairman Tom Rothman has confirmed Jumanji 3 for a Christmastime 2019 theatrical release. Last year's Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle was an unexpected financial smash hit for the studio that has grossed $957 million worldwide and is still going at the U.S. box office, four months after its December 2017 opening. Sony is naturally moving forward full speed ahead with a third Jumanji installment, with Welcome to the Jungle cowriters Jeff Pinkner and Scott Rosenberg and director Jake Kasdan all returning. Welcome to the Jungle stars Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart, Karen Gillan, and Jack Black are similarly all lined up to reprise their roles for another romp in the jungle.
It was previously reported that Sony wants Jumanji 3 to be ready in time to hit theaters by December of next year. That would pit the film against Star Wars: Episode IX at the box office, similar to how Welcome to the Jungle opened a mere five days after Star Wars: The Last Jedi in 2017. Rothman has now confirmed that Sony is indeed gearing up for round two of the showdown between the Jumanji and Star Wars movie franchises.
According to Deadline, Rothman confirmed the Christmastime 2019 release for Jumanji 3 towards the end of Sony's film presentation at CinemaCon 2018, half-jokingly telling the exhibitors in attendance "Don't give all your screens to Star Wars." Although Rothman didn't announce a specific release date for the film, it's possible that Sony intends to unleash Jumanji 3 on Christmas Day next year (which falls on a Wednesday). If so, that means Jumanji 3 will open in theaters five days after Episode IX, just like what happened when Welcome to the Jungle arrived less than a week after The Last Jedi.
Sony currently has an untitled animated film slotted to arrive on December 25, 2019, so it's easy to imagine the studio giving that date to Jumanji 3 instead. Melissa McCarthy's action/comedy Superintelligence is also set to debut that day, while Universal's Broadway musical adaptation Wicked is set to arrive the same day as Episode IX. Sony still has Masters of the Universe scheduled to arrive two days before Episode IX, but that film barely changed directors and will almost certainly be moved (most likely, delayed) to make room for Jumanji 3.
Funnily enough, The Last Jedi and Welcome to the Jungle also faced off against a movie musical last December (namely, The Greatest Showman), yet all three films managed to become massive commercial hits. All concerned parties are clearly hoping that history will repeat itself in 2019 when Episode IX, Jumanji 3, and Wicked compete for attention from moviegoing audiences. Sony certainly has fair reason to believe that Jumanji 3 is up to the task, what with most of the same creative talent that made Welcome to the Jungle a crowd-pleaser returning. Meanwhile, as this month's Rampage demonstrates, there's seemingly no stopping The Rock and his franchises right now.
We will bring you more details on Jumanji 3 as the story develops.