So far, the two rebooted Jumanji blockbusters have largely avoided falling into the nostalgia-driven traps that blight many delayed sequels to hugely popular movies. Welcome to the Jungle and The Next Level are very much set in the same universe, with the real world action unfolding in the town of Brantford, but they’ve each told self-contained stories.
It would’ve been easy to simply rely on the status of Robin Williams’ beloved 1995 adventure to power the narrative, but refitting the concept as video game-inspired action comedies was a smart move, one that’s seen the last two installments earn $1.8 billion at the box office to become Sony’s biggest franchise that isn’t Spider-Man.
The ending of The Next Level would indicate that the upcoming third outing for Dr. Smolder Bravestone, Mouse Finbar, Shelly Oberon and Ruby Roundhouse will bring the avatars into Brantford as the two worlds collide, and we’ve now heard from our sources – the same ones who told us Luke Skywalker was returning to Star Wars long before The Mandalorian‘s season 2 finale – that Dwayne Johnson wants to incorporate some time travel elements into the series down the road.
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According to our intel, parts of Joe Johnston’s first movie will be revisited as the quartet of heroes presumably find themselves shunted all around the timeline as the game goes haywire once more, but there’s a thin line between reverence and over-reliance that any such plot development would need to straddle carefully.
That being said, Jumanji has more than earned the benefit of the doubt following the previous duo of massively entertaining crowd-pleasers that turned the concept on its head to great effect, and the central premise means that really anything is possible in the future.