Of all the remakes that have either happened on confirmed to be in the pipeline in recent years, a Jumanji one always seemed somewhat unlikely for some reason, with Joe Johnston’s 1995 Robin Williams-starrer being that unique breed in that it was somehow of its time, yet hasn’t actually aged that badly. Despite the fact that a movie has been announced and a release date confirmed, we somehow still weren’t really expecting anything to come of it, which makes it all the more surprising that Sony seem to be pressing ahead on it, with Jake Kasdan confirmed for the director’s seat.
At first glance Kasdan may seem like something of an odd choice, considering much of his career has centred around directing knockabout comedies like Bad Teacher, Sex Tape and Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story (although it’s worth noting that he did also direct the excellent 1998 film Zero Effect). Still, he has a lot of experience in both TV and film, having also helmed episodes of shows like New Girl, The Grinder and Weird Loners, and it is this kind of varied background that may well have counted in his favour.
He will be working alongside writing duo Scott Rosenberg (Con Air, Gone In 60 Seconds) and Jeff Pinkner (The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Fringe), who themselves are working on a script originally penned by Chris McKenna (Community, The Mindy Project) and Erik Sommers (American Dad), so there’s a lot of varied experience there.
Whatever happens, it will take something truly special to come close to emulating the magic that the original movie had. Even if it wasn’t exactly a critical darling at the time, it has stood the test of time, so this remake has a lot to live up to.
Jumanji will be released in cinemas on 3 February 2017. For more news about the biggest movies, pick up the latest issue of SciFiNow.