There was initially a lot of skepticism when it was first announced that beloved Robin Williams family film Jumanji was getting a combination of sequel and reboot over two decades down the line, with Dwayne Johnson headlining the cast and producing, and the concept refitted as the basis for a $150 million blockbuster action comedy.
Of course, any naysayers were forced to eat their words when Welcome to the Jungle delivered crowd-pleasing entertainment on a huge scale, raking in $962 million at the box office. The Next Level may have failed to hit those heights, but an $800 million haul is nothing to be sniffed at, and the reviews were just as enthusiastic the second time around.
In fact, the most recent Jumanji movies are the only two of Sony’s ten highest-grossing titles ever that don’t feature either Spider-Man, Venom or James Bond, and with 007 now in the hands of Amazon following the MGM takeover, it’s now the studio’s second biggest property behind the Sony Pictures Universe of Marvel Characters. So it shouldn’t come as a surprise, then, that Kevin Hart admitted in a new interview that the next video game-inspired adventure is definitely happening.
“For us to recreate the Jumanji world and have that success, it’s monumental. You don’t walk away from that. We have no interest in walking away. It’s about the timing. Dwayne, myself, I’m doing a movie with Jack Black right now, Borderlands. I’m in Budapest. We’ve all kind of taken on some other projects, so I think when things slow down for us and our commitments are out the way, we’re definitely going to revisit another one because there’s no reason not to. It’s a family adventure. That’s a box that, once again, if you can check correctly it’s amazing.
It’s profitable. The household of all can go out and enjoy, but right now, my priorities are and the commitments that I’ve made. Staying true to my partnership at Netflix, making sure that I prioritize these films. Knocking these out, doing it at a high level, and then after that, looking at what the world of appetite is for the other things that we have on the table. That’s going to be a priority. But there’s no world where we’re not interested in doing more. I know Sony definitely is as well.”
The project was confirmed to be in active development at the beginning of last year but we haven’t heard any concrete updates since then, which obviously hasn’t done anything to stop a myriad of rumors and speculation making the rounds anyway. Based on how The Next Level ended, it looks as though the real world and the in-game Jumanji universe are set to collide in spectacular fashion, which is definitely the smartest way to keep the premise fresh when the previous pair bore a lot of superficial similarities.