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Jumanji 4 : Everything you need to know in 2021
Aishwarya-Posted Sep 11, 2021
When you say the name of Jumanji, what is the first image that comes to your mind?
If you say, Robin Williams then you are definitely a child of the 1980s or the 90s.
Whereas if you answer with Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson or Nick Jonas or Kevin Hart or video games, then you are the child of the 21st century.
Whichever century you belong to, we are all aware of the fantasy game of Jumanji that captured our imagination in the 90s with the inimitable Robin Williams playing Alan Parrish.
We were introduced to Jumanji in 1995, with the movie starring Robin Williams, Kirsten Dunst, Bradley Pierce, and Bonnie Hunt as the 4 players.
They stumble upon the innocent-looking board game and get stuck with the task of finishing the game to save Parrish.
This had been our image of Jumanji until 2017 when Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle was released.
The 21st-century reboot of this dreaded board game unleashed the same chaos and mayhem as the first one.
However, in this installment, we saw Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart, Jack Black, and Karen Gillan create the magic that Robin Williams and his crew did in the first part.
Welcome to the Jungle brought many upgrades to the board game and made it a video game.
Instead of a simple roll of the dice, the players had to complete tasks. It also had 5 different avatars that represent the original players in the mysterious world of Jumanji.
The basic rules of the game, however, remained the same:
- The players who begin the game must end it.
- No one can escape the Jumanji without finishing the game/task.
- No Cheating or foul play.
Encouraged by the tremendous success of Welcome to the Jungle, Jumanji: The Next Level was made in 2019.
It introduced more characters and took the game to a new level of adventure and fun.
The Next Level introduced the characters of Danny DeVito and Danny Glover as the new players.
And also brought new avatars played by Awkwafina. There was also a new villain, played by Rory McCann.
The third installment was also very successful with its fans. So, can we expect a Jumanji 4?
Why not? Say the makers of the franchise. I know you are all keen to get the full details of the scoop.
So, let's start off on our adventure now.
Everything we know about the Jumanji franchise so far
Jumanji is actually based on a children’s book by the same name written in 1981.
It was written by Chris Van Allsburg. The series of adventures also include Zathura: A Space Adventure.
It involves brothers Danny and Walter, who are the neighbors of Judy and Peter from Jumanji.
For continuity's sake, let's only concentrate on the film franchise of Jumanji. Jumanji, as we know, is a magical board game that revolves around the mysterious and imaginary world.
Here, all the beings are larger, scarier, and more potent. So are the punishments and penalties for cheating or wrong moves.
In the first movie, we saw Alan Parrish get stuck in Jumanji for over 20 years.
He is played by Robin Williams. He first plays the game with his school friend, Sarah.
As a part of the game, he gets sucked into the world of Jumanji. Later, 2 young kids, Peter and Judy, move into the old Parrish house and restart the game.
With this, he comes back and brings many weird and deadly animals and plants from that world.
The only way to send them back is to finish the game.
Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (2017)
The film takes a leap forward in the world of Jumanji as well as the plot.
In the 2017 movie, Jumanji is no longer a board game. It is upgraded to a video game.
Since it is a video game, the players do not need to roll the dice and move the markers, but they need to finish tasks to move up levels.
In the latest version, 4 high school kids are sent to clean the basement of a school as part of detention.
Here they find the game and decide to play it. They get pulled into the world of Jumanji in the form of the avatar they have chosen.
Dwayne Johnson is Dr. Bravestone, Karen Gillan is Ruby Roundhouse, Jack Black is Professor Shelly Oberon, and Kevin Hart is Franklin Finbar.
Surprisingly they find a player already stuck in Jumanji. His name is Jefferson ‘Seaplane’ McDonough.
Their mission is to find the gem and replace it in the eye of the Jaguar.
Jumanji: The Next Level (2019)
As the name suggests, this installment takes the plot on a new and more adventurous path.
Based on their experience in the game, the 4 high school kids become good friends and decide to keep in touch even after going to college.
During their college break, they come back to meet each other. They realize that all is not well with one of their friends.
Due to the emotional upheaval, Spencer Gilpin is down on confidence and ashamed of his life choices.
He ditches his friends and enters the game alone. Now his friends have to go in as well to save Gilpin.
The problem is, by mistake, Gilpin’s grandfather and his old friend get pulled into the game too.
This creates new complications and fun-filled conversations. Jake Kasdan, the director of Welcome To The Jungle and The Next Level, informed us that the franchise was planning to make another installment in the series.
In December 2019, talks had started for a possible part four of Jumanji. Due to the unexpected pandemic situation, all work and productions in Hollywood had come to a standstill.
The Ending of Jumanji: The Next Level
As discussed before, the Next Level has new characters like grandpa Eddie and his old friend Milo.
In the video game, we encounter new characters as well. We have Ming Fleetfoot, the avatar played by Awkwafina, and Jurgen The Brutal, a sworn enemy of Dr. Bravestone.
He is played by Rory McCann, and there is Cyclone, a beautiful black steed with wings.
While the previous installments were all fun and adventure, this installment adds an extra punch of sentiment and friendship to the show.
On the one hand, we have Spencer Gilpin, who is depressed and insecure with his lack of confidence.
On the other hand, we have a broken friendship between Eddie and Milo. Eddie is resentful of Milo because he secretly sold his share of the diner without consent.
While Milo is guilty of it, he also has a terminal illness and wants to restore his friendship with Eddie.
The Next Level highlights the importance of friendship, camaraderie, and forgiveness. Although the task is completed and the players can get out of the game, Milo plans to stay back in Jumanji.
He wants to fly free as the steed Cyclone, and Eddie understands his friend. The group returns back and ends the Christmas break on a happy note.
In the end credits scene, we are shown something extra. We are given a glimpse of Spencer Gilpin’s mother and a repair guy fiddle with the video game.
This accidentally releases a few of the animals from Jumanji into the town. Is this an easter egg that offers a peek into the next movie?
Does this mean that there will be future movies with this group? This has been on the mind of everyone.
Official Announcements and Release date of Jumanji 4
After the success of The Next Level, the team was immediately sold on the idea for the next installment.
The main cast was also ready for the show, but the pandemic put a damper on the plan for everybody.
Jake Kasdan, the director, already started working on the idea for the next movie. The producers were also ready to get the show on the road.
Dwayne Johnson, the main cast and one of the producers of Jumanji 4, made an announcement in December 2019 that further fuelled the rumors of another sequel.
He said that Jurgen the Brutal was, in fact, an avatar just like them. The next sequel is rumored to disclose the identity of the player behind Jurgen The Brutal.
And hopefully, give us a peek into the past animosity between Bravestove and Jurgen. In March 2020, Jake Kasdan insisted that the next movie is in the making, only if the core cast continues.
They will be the central driving force as the story is in the development stage.
The producer Hiram Garcia also hinted that the next sequel for Jumanji is deep into the development stage.
With all the constant buzz and updates from the crew, we can surely hope to see it in 2022.
The inspiration behind Jumanji Franchise
The story and cast have come a long way from the original movie that came out in 1995.
But here is a little history lesson on the inspiration for this breathtaking Jumanji franchise that we all seem to enjoy so much.
The franchise has earned over 2 billion with box office earnings over the last 24 years.
The whole franchise started from the children’s book, Jumanji, written by Chris Van Allsburg. It was released in 1981, followed by Zathura in 2002.
The book was adapted into the movie by Greg Taylor, Jim Strain, and Jonathan Hensleigh.
They made a few changes by including more characters like Alan Parrish and Sarah. They also added a few extra penalties, like Peter turning into a monkey when he cheats.
These were not a part of the original book. Taking a cue from Taylor, Strain, and Hensleigh, the team of Jumanji decided to revisit the adventure with an upgraded story to suit the 21st century.
Chris McKenna, Erik Sommers, Scott Rosenberg, and Jeff Pinkner came together to update the board game into a video game.
They took inspiration from the video game culture of the 1990s. They created an imaginary world called Jumanji.
Here, the players, like Dr. Smolder Bravestone, Ruby Roundhouse, Jefferson Seaplane McDonough, Professor Sheldon 'Shelly’ Oberon, Franklin ‘Fridge’ Finbar, are given tasks to complete levels and earn points.
You also have NPCs like Professor Russell Van Pelt and his henchman, who are the opponents that Bravestove and his team have to fight.
Nigel Billingsley is another NPC who guides and explains the game. The idea of a live-action video game paid off among the young fans who keenly follow the gaming world.
This has sky-rocketed ticket sales and also encouraged the makers to create an actual video game called Jumanji.
Popularity details of the Jumanji 4
Jumanji was released in 1995, and it was based on a book. This book had a limited fan base.
The film was carried on the shoulders of Robin Williams and his comic ability and the CGI works.
At the time of the release of Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle in 2017, it was over 20 years since the Robin Williams adventure.
The fans were initially skeptical about Jumanji without Williams. Some of them even felt it was an insult to his legacy.
The cast, and the crew, along with Jake Kasdan, turned the tide on all the naysayers.
The film did overwhelming business and made over $ 900 million at the box office.
It created a new and solid fan base for itself. By 2019, The Next Level set a new record by earning 3.08 times during the opening weekend in comparison to Welcome to The Jungle.
To get a correct estimate of the fan base and popularity of Jumanji, visit their social media pages on Twitter, Facebook or check out the numbers on Google Trends.
Here is a little peek into the Jumanji fan world.
The official Twitter handle for Jumanji is @jumanjimovie. Here you can get all the information on the latest Jumanji news, cast information, the release of PC games, updates on the animated shows, etc.
The handle has loyal followership of 29.8K, who patiently await the news on the next movie.
They share many fun memes, celebrate cast birthdays, and more. You can also get all the information on BLU- Ray and DVD orders and when you can watch them at home on Digital networks, 4K UHD screens, etc.
Google Trends gives us an idea of the continuing popularity of the movie over the past 12 months.
It has been continuously trending in Google searches for news on the next sequel, the PC games, search for Jumanji DVD release, the Blu-ray release, and more.
You can also get an estimate of the fan following and popularity of Jumanji from the number of Google searches in different countries.
Here we see that everyone is eagerly awaiting the release of Jumanji 4.
The Jumanji community in Reddit is quite active too. We can still find threads of people discussing the first movie.
For example, at the end of the first Jumanji, did Judy and Peter recognize Alan and Sarah?
There is another thread about a scene from Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle. A user raised a query about the missing piece of the map.
It is the same one that the team had to recover in the marketplace. The place is lively and filled with fun discussions and possible plot holes that you might have missed.
The expected plot of Jumanji 4
So what can we expect from Jumanji 4? If the past 2 installments give any indications, we can surely expect more fun, crazier plot twists, and wacky adventures with some excellent comedy.
The director, Kasdan, has been very tight-lipped about the plot. He has consistently maintained that the story is still in the early development stages.
However, he has confirmed one thing. Everyone in the core team will continue to feature in the 4th installment too.
Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart, Jack Black, Karen Gillan, Nick Jonas, Alex Wolff, Ser’Darius Blain, Morgan Turner, Madison Isner, and Colin Hanks will continue to have a storyline.
In December 2019, Dwayne Johnson spoke in an interview and said we could expect a startling discovery in the 4th installment.
It could be disclosed that Jurgen The Brutal is not an NPC but an actual avatar.
Thereby, he indicated that there was a new player in the game. Speculations are rife about this new mystery player.
It could be an old character being brought back, or a new player might also be introduced.
Either way, this opens up avenues for more fun and adventure.
Why Should You watch Jumanji 4?
Unless you have missed the earlier movies in the Jumanji series, I definitely doubt anyone will want to give Jumanji 4 a miss.
Welcome to the Jungle introduced us to the insane comedy chemistry between Dwayne Johnson, Jack Black, and Kevin Hart.
There is also the sidetrack between Dr. Bravestone and Ruby Roundhouse. Neither have we thoroughly enjoyed the laughs from Awkwafina in The Next Level.
Apart from the avatars, the actual players also have their subplots that can be explored.
The brewing love between Spencer Gilpin and Martha Kaply can lead to a story. On the other hand, the friendship between Bethany Walker and Alex Vreeke is also very endearing.
These are reasons enough for us to patiently wait for the next installment.
Online Reactions to Jumanji 4
When the second installment of Jumanji was announced, several people were skeptical about it. The fact that the makers would have to replace the character of Robin Williams, who had recently passed away, was a strong contributor.
Some felt that the concept of a magical board game was no longer novel or entertaining enough.
In the face of all this negativity, the show chose to upgrade the game. The show went ahead and introduced a stellar cast of 3 comedians.
The rest, as they say, is history. The movie is the biggest hit franchise that is neither from Disney nor from Universal studio.
It shot the franchise into the big league with other major studio franchises like Star Wars, Avengers, Star Trek, etc.
Quora has been abuzz with fan comments, queries, plot discussions, and clarifications about the Jumanji series.
Some invested fans discuss plot holes like, ‘Did Judy and Peter really forget all that happened in Jumanji?’.
There was another question about which player got the worst deal in the game. Many felt that the Jefferson ‘Seaplane’ McDonaugh was at a clear disadvantage, having lost 2 lives already.
There was another hot question from the fans "Which of the Jumanji movies were the best according to popular opinion?" There was another fan who was anxious to know if there would be another Jumanji sequel.
Reddit is filled with Jumanji lore and expected plots for Jumanji 4. Fans have created many Reddit conversations to discuss their favorite plotline.
My favorite one was where a user suggested that Nigel Billingsley is not an NPC, but he has a more substantial part in the world of Jumanji.
There is an evergreen theory that Peter and Judy knew, remembered the game they played.
They recognized Alan and his wife.
Twitter has many memes to show their fondness for The Rock, Kevin Hart, Jumanji 4, and the cast.
We can also find many fans from Latino countries. There were updated interviews with cast members and crew from online magazines like Screenrant, Comicbook dot com, Chip and company, and more.
Ratings and Reviews of Jumanji Franchise
Fans have always been very vocal about their affection for the characters and story of Jumanji.
At the same time, they have also made fun of it. Some fans felt that the news of the Jumanji reboot was too close to the death of Robin Williams, the main character of the first movie.
They were also appreciative of it being an homage to his acting.
Different websites have given different ratings to the movies. But, they have all consistently appreciated and recommended the movie as a good comedy.
Rotten Tomatoes: 55%
Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle
Rotten Tomatoes: 76%
Jumanji: The Next Level
Rotten Tomatoes: 71%
The first Jumanji received a decent rating at Rotten Tomatoes. The critics felt that the plot was weak in a few parts, but the adventure offered good fun for the entire family.
The film was praised as a feast for the eyes. When the second installment was released, the ratings for the film jumped up.
Critics applauded the charming cast, witty dialogue, humorous twists, and, needless to say, the fun updated plot.
The performance of Jack Black as a self-absorbed teenage girl was particularly hilarious. The critics also liked the heart displayed by the characters.
With the third installment, the ratings took a slight dip. However, the critics still felt that the movie retains the core value of what made it a hit and added on to it.
The performance of Dwayne Johnson as he mimics Danny DeVito and Kevin Hart as Danny Glover were also fun to watch.
The fans were pleasantly surprised by this twist.
Production and Success of Jumanji
The Jumanji franchise has been very successful and enjoyed the love and affection of millions of fans across the world.
When Jumanji was first released in 1995, it was made on a budget of $ 65 million, and its box office earnings were around $ 262 million.
When the producers wanted to make a sequel to the movie, they revamped the concept and introduced many big stars.
The budget was close to $ 150 million. However, the film was well-loved, and it earned $ 962.2 million.
With the third film in the franchise, the producers invested close to $ 132 million.
In return, they earned $ 800 million.
Awards and Recognitions of Jumanji
The Jumanji movies have been nominated for several awards and won quite a few awards.
Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle
Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle
Teen Choice Award
Choice Movie Actor: Comedy, Dwayne Johnson
Jumanji: The Next Level
Favorite Movie Actor, Dwayne Johnson
There were 42 nominated across all three films, and they have won 11 awards. The above list has only a few awards.
Famous characters who were part of the Jumanji Franchise
Robin Williams played Alan Parrish
Alan Parrish was the first player to enter the world of Jumanji when he played the games as a kid.
Robin Williams played Parrish, who gets sucked into the world and stays there for decades.
He builds himself a treehouse to stay safe from the dangerous NPCs, animals, and insects.
Although he comes out of Jumanji as a full-grown man, his attitude and personality are the same as an 11 kid.
Bonnie Hunt played Sarah Whittle
Sarah is a friend of Parrish, from school, who plays the game along with him.
When Parrish gets sucked into the game, she tries to explain that to everyone. She gets labeled as an unstable person and ostracized by everyone.
Bonnie Hunt plays Sarah as a neurotic who is scared out of her wits by every little thing.
Although she dearly loves her friends, she has trouble believing in herself.
Kirsten Dunst played Judy Shepherd
Judy, as well as Peter, move into the home that previously belonged to the Parrish family.
Judy is the responsible sister who loves to take care of her brother. Kristen Dunst played the role with aplomb.
She was 13 when she played Judy and was featured in the 50 Most Beautiful People of the year list by People Magazine.
Bradley Pierce played Peter Shepherd
Peter is Judy’s younger brother. He, as well as Judy, find the game in the attic and decide to play it.
He is a typical naughty kid who loves to cause trouble, but both the siblings decide to save Parrish after hearing his story.
Dwayne Johnson played Dr. Xander ‘Smolder’ Bravestone
Dr. Bravestone is an archeologist from Jumanji. He is an avatar in the game. He has no weaknesses, and his strengths include ‘Smolder’ that can stun and disarm people with a look.
Apart from this, he is skilled in all kinds of combat and weaponry. Dwayne Johnson plays the avatar of the indestructible Dr. Bravestone.
However, at the same time, the player is an insecure teenager who wants to fit in with his childhood friend ‘Fridge’.
Kevin Hart played Franklin ‘Mouse’ Finbar
Finbar is another avatar from Jumanji. He is a biologist who can communicate with animals.
Apart from this, he has no other strength, and cake is his weakness. He is a friend of Dr. Bravestone and acts as his assistant. Kevin Hart is the avatar of the tall and muscular Fridge.
He is the childhood friend of Gilpin, yet he bullies Gilpin constantly. Both of them have unresolved issues which carry into the game.
Karen Gillan played Ruby Roundhouse
Ruby Roundhouse is a weapons expert on the team. She is a master in a large number of martial arts, including dancing.
As an avatar, Ruby is a confident fighter. But as a person, she is clueless about many things.
Karen Gillan plays Ruby, who can fight with muscle memory but has no idea about being a woman.
She has feelings for Dr. Bravestone but is unable to express them. Professor Shelly has to help her figure them out.
Jack Black played Prof. Sheldon ‘Shelly’ Oberon
Prof. Oberon is a cartography expert. He is the one to guide the team across Jumanji to complete their tasks.
His avatar is that of a man, yet the player is a teenage girl. Jack Black plays Prof.
Oberon is a teenage girl who is self-absorbed, vain, and at the same time helpful and kind.
She gives up her lifeline to save Seaplane in one instance. She also guides Ruby to realize her feelings for Bravestone.
Nick Jonas played Jefferson ‘Seaplane’ McDonough
Seaplane is the first player to find the board game that Alan Parrish threw away.
The game magically transforms into a video game, and he gets sucked in when he plays it.
The seaplane has been stuck in the game for 20 years and is unaware of it.
Nick Jonas is a suave aviator whose weakness is mosquito bites. He guides the team out of danger in the market and explains things to them.
We also have the actual players in the real world. Here is the list of them:
- Alex Wolff: He plays Spencer Gilpin, who is a nerdy kid. He gets bullied by the jocks. He is insecure and low on self-esteem.
- Ser’Darius Blain: He plays Anthony ‘Fridge’ Johnson. He is a cool jock who was once a friend of Gilpin, but now he bullies him.
- Madison Iseman: She plays Bethany Walker, a self-absorbed teenage drama queen. She is beautiful and knows how to use her beauty.
- Morgan Turner: She plays Martha Kaply, who is secretly fond of Spencer. The problem is that she cannot express herself. She is disdainful toward Bethany in the beginning.
- Colin Hanks: He plays Alex Vreeke, the first one to enter Jumanji. He forms a deep friendship with Bethany when he is consoled by her. She also saves him so, he names his daughter Bethany.
Here is a list of other NPCs in the game:
- Rhys Darby: He plays Nigel Billingsley
- Rory McCann: He plays Jurgen The Brutal
- Bobby Cannavale: He plays Professor Van Pelt
Rumors and Controversies surrounding Jumanji
The sets of all three Jumanji movies were full of fun and laughter. All the stars of the first Jumanji movie fondly recollect their experience with each other.
Bradley Pierce, who plays Peter, had to undergo three and a half hours of makeup daily.
One day Robin Williams came early to the sets and sat with him. Williams kept him company with stories of his time with Mrs. Doubtfire makeup.
Bonnie Hunt, who plays Sarah Whittle, shocked the director with her over-the-top performance on the first day.
When he sat down with her to discuss it, she explained the psychology of a petrified lady whom no one believed.
The more recently released movies also did not fall short on fun. Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart had the team in splits every day with their antics.
Nick Jonas recollected his experiences as being exhilarating and happy all through. There was a rumor that Jumanji: The Next Level was supposed to be the last movie of Jack Black.
It was rumored that he was retiring after that. However, Jack Black immediately laid them all to rest by saying he was only getting started.
With all the constant hype and discussion from the producers, directors, and actors, we can surely expect the next installment of Jumanji in 2022.
At the end of August, the producer, Hiram Garcia, informed us that we should prepare ourselves for an explosive show with Jumanji 4.
He promised us over-the-top action, fun, and adventure. So keep your fingers crossed and your eye peeled for all information.
We at ENTOIN will continue to keep you posted.