Fans can expect their first glimpse at Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle later this week, now that the first trailer is scheduled to debut on Thursday. The long-gestating Jumanji sequel takes place decades after Joe Johnston's 1995 film, which starred Robin Williams as Alan Parrish and Bonnie Hunt as Sarah Whittle, as well as Kirsten Dunst as Judy Shepherd and Bradley Pierce as Peter Shepherd. Although there are no plans to bring back any of the original cast members (especially considering that Williams has since passed away), there's still the possibility that the studio could use archive footage for flashback sequences.
Instead, the Jumanji sequel follows the adventures of four new teenagers who come into contact with the Jumanji video game and, consequently, get sucked into its world. In doing so, they immediately become adults -- and they are: Dwayne Johnson as Dr. Smolder Bravestone (former gamer Spencer), Kevin Hart as Moose Finbar (former football jock Fridge), Karen Gillan as Ruby Roundhouse (former wallflower Martha), and Jack Black as Professor Shelly Oberon (former "popular girl" Bethany). According to the synopsis, they must discover how Alan beat the game all those years ago and escape the world themselves.
Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle is directed by Jake Kasdan (Bad Teacher, New Girl), and based on a screenplay by Chris McKenna and Erik Sommers, as well as Scott Rosenberg and Jeff Pinkner. Thus far, audiences have only gotten one first look at the film, which itself caught flak for Gillan's "skimpy" outfit, though she says there's a valid reason for her wearing that outfit in the upcoming sequel. Perhaps that's something that will be addressed in the movie's first trailer, which Seven Bucks Productions has announced will release this Thursday.
— Seven Bucks Prod (@SevenBucksProd) June 27, 2017
Columbia Pictures has been developing Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle for several years now, and it's just the latest movie to follow Hollywood's recent trend of producing sequels to age-old movies. For instance, last year, the studio notoriously released Paul Feig's women-led Ghostbusters reboot, starring Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy, Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jones, and then there's Denis Villeneuve's highly-anticipated Blade Runner sequel, Blade Runner: 2049, which hits theaters this fall. Those are only two examples of many that have spanned the past decade, though they aren't always aimless.
Aside from bringing back movies (and occasionally establishing franchises around them), the biggest thing that concerns longtime fans is whether or not the sequels will remain true to the original films. That's something that Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle's cast and crew have been cognizant about; they know the original film is revered, and they need to tread carefully with the material. The first trailer should provide audiences with an inkling of how the final product will turn out.
Source: Sony/Columbia Pictures
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