After many delays, Jungle Cruise is finally coming to theaters and Disney Plus Premier Access next month, and it’s easy to see why the Mouse House could be crossing their fingers in the hope that the big budget blockbuster can replicate both the formula and success enjoyed by Pirates of the Caribbean.
Comparisons had always been drawn between the two given that they were both based on theme park attractions, with a cast headlined by an A-list American movie star and a pair of British companions, but the most recent trailer for Jungle Cruise really hammered the notion home harder than ever before.
The broad strokes of the plot had remained under wraps up until the latest promo, which surprised a lot of folks by revealing that the pic was heading straight into supernatural territory, with the hunt for the Tree of Life and presence of zombie conquistadors more than a little reminiscent of Jack Sparrow tracking down a mythical MacGuffin and facing opposition from various monsters and foes of legend.
Admittedly, there are still two Pirates of the Caribbean projects in the works, one a direct sequel to Dead Men Tell No Tales and the other a spinoff set to be headlined by Margot Robbie, so it doesn’t look like a straight swap, but as much as Jungle Cruise appears to be reasonably diverting summer entertainment, the footage also makes it seem as though it’s been precision engineered to fill the exact same gap in the market as the swashbuckling series.
In any case, Disney have tried and failed before to transplant the concept to different circumstances in The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time and The Lone Ranger, so we’ll just have to wait and see if Jungle Cruise does well enough to warrant a sequel.