Jumanji is returning to the big screen, as the newly-released trailer for Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle teases. The original 1995 Jumanji movie was a VHS-rewatch mainstay to a generation of kids who grew up in the '90s and pushed the boundaries of using CGI to create realistic versions of actual animals - with the late Robin Williams starring in the fantasy/adventure, but a few years after his roles in such younger-skewing box office hits as Mrs. Doubtfire and Aladdin.
While a semi-continuation/rebooting sequel to the original Jumanji movie had entered development prior to Williams' tragic passing in 2014, the project really picked up speed down the pipeline after Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson signed on to headline the family-friendly movie. The first trailer for the Johnson-anchored Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle is now online, following the teaser's showing at CinemaCon 2017 in Las Vegas earlier this year.
The 1995 Jumanji movie, as well as the illustrated children's book by Chris Van Allsburg upon which the film is loosely based, centers on an enchanted board game that menaces players by conjuring wild animals and other hazards from a fantasy-world jungle. However, as the Welcome to the Jungle trailer illustrates, the film updates Jumanji's core concept for a new generation; with the magic-portal this time originating from a "retro" video-game console rather than an old board game.
Here is the official synopsis for Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, to go along with the trailer and poster (see above):
In a brand new Jumanji adventure, the tables are turned as four teenagers are sucked into Jumanji's world - pitted against rhinos, black mambas and an endless variety of jungle traps and puzzles. To survive, they'll play as characters from the game: meek Spencer becomes a stupid and girl crazy jock (Dwayne Johnson); football jock Fridge becomes a tiny Einstein (Kevin Hart); It-girl Bethany becomes a bookworm professor (Jack Black); and unathletic Martha becomes an amazonian warrior (Karen Gillan). To beat the game and return to the Planet Earth with their lives, they'll have to start seeing things in an entirely different way.
Time will tell if the new Jumanji - set to hit theaters one week after Star Wars: Episode VIII - The Last Jedi arrives - will connect with audiences in the way the original film did, given both the sheer amount of time that has passed as well as the radical difference in storyline between the movies. Nostalgia, as it were, will be a factor in not only drawing moviegoers to check out Welcome to the Jungle, but the actual plot of the movie itself.
Case in point: Johnson first teased a "tribute" to Robin Williams and his character Alan Parrish in the 2017 Jumanji film before production began. Costar Jack Black has since confirmed that Welcome to the Jungle takes place in the same jungle where Alan was trapped all those years ago; suggesting the main characters will discover concrete evidence of him having lived there (in a moment perhaps reminiscent of the scene where the original Jurassic Park Visitors Center is uncovered, during Jurassic World).
Source: Dwayne Johnson
- Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (2017) release date: Dec 20, 2017