Jumanji: The Next Level

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Jumanji: The Next Level
Theatrical release poster
Directed byJake Kasdan
Written by
Based onJumanji
by Chris Van Allsburg
Produced by
CinematographyGyula Pados
Edited by
Music byHenry Jackman
Distributed bySony Pictures Releasing
Release date
  • December 13, 2019 (2019-12-13)
Running time
123 minutes[2]
CountryUnited States
Budget$125–132 million[3][4]
Box office$801.7 million[3]

Jumanji: The Next Level is a 2019 American fantasy adventure comedy film directed by Jake Kasdan and co-written by Jeff Pinkner, and Scott Rosenberg. It is a sequel to 2017's Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, the second follow-up to 1995's Jumanji, and is the fourth installment in the Jumanji franchise. It stars Dwayne Johnson, Jack Black, Kevin Hart, Karen Gillan, Nick Jonas, Alex Wolff, Morgan Turner, Ser'Darius Blain, and Madison Iseman reprising their roles from the previous film while Awkwafina, Rory McCann, Danny Glover, and Danny DeVito also join the cast. The film's plot takes place two years after Welcome to the Jungle, in which the same group of teenagers, along with an old friend and two unwitting additions, become trapped in Jumanji once again. There, they all find themselves facing new problems and challenges with both old and new avatars while having to save the land from a new villain to escape.

Principal photography took place during 2019, between January 21 to May 11 in locations including Atlanta, New Mexico, Alberta, and Hawaii, with much of the cast consisting of those from the previous film, reprising their original roles for the sequel.

Jumanji: The Next Level was theatrically released in the United States on December 13, 2019, by Sony Pictures Releasing, under its Columbia Pictures label. The film received generally positive reviews from critics and grossed $800 million worldwide against a $125–132 million budget, becoming the tenth highest-grossing film of 2019. A sequel is in development.


In 2019, two years after their previous adventures in Jumanji,[a] Spencer Gilpin, Anthony "Fridge" Johnson, Martha Kaply, and Bethany Walker plan to meet up over Christmas break to discuss their first year out of school. The night before, Spencer, feeling despondent that his life isn't as glamorous as his friends', gets out Jumanji, where he had secretly rebuilt the console after its destruction in the previous film. When he is late to the meet-up, his friends visit his mother and are greeted by Spencer's grandfather, Eddie, and Eddie's estranged friend and former business partner, Milo Walker, who came for a visit. Fridge, Martha, and Bethany realize he has gone into the game and they follow Spencer. Eddie and Milo are also sucked into the game inadvertently while Bethany is left behind, forcing her to go to the other Jumanji player, Alex Vreeke, for help.

Inside the game, Martha becomes the avatar Ruby Roundhouse (whom she had been previously). Fridge becomes Professor Sheldon Oberon (who had been Bethany previously), while Eddie and Milo become Dr. Smolder Bravestone and Franklin "Mouse" Finbar (who had been Spencer and Fridge respectively). After explaining Jumanji's rules to Eddie and Milo, they encounter non-player character Nigel Billingsley, the game's guide, who reveals that Jumanji is suffering from a massive drought. To leave the game, they must end the drought by recovering a magical necklace known as the Falcon Heart, stolen by warlord and Bravestone's rival, Jurgen the Brutal. Each character gets a limited number of lives, as they did previously, with the number of lives each has left marked on the character's arm. Transported to a desert to pursue Jurgen, and narrowly escaping a herd of ostriches, the team encounters Spencer who has a new avatar, a skilled female thief called Ming Fleetfoot. Apologizing for their predicament, Spencer joins them.

While attempting to escape the desert, they face new challenges and problems, along with collecting a Jumanji Berry and discovering a pool of glowing green water that allows them to switch avatars. However, the group struggles to adjust to the avatar changes: Fridge has trouble figuring out how Oberon is even relevant to the game, Spencer's meekness makes him unable to fully utilize Ming's skills, Milo's tendency to 'take the scenic route' when talking makes him unable to relay vital information quickly, and Eddie's hotheaded stubbornness costs the group several lives. Meanwhile, Eddie bickers with Milo, revealing their friendship ended when Milo sold their diner behind Eddie's back, forcing him into retirement. Traveling to a forest beyond the desert, the group crosses a series of rope bridges, while being attacked by a group of mandrills.

Successfully crossing the bridges, they are reunited with Alex, as his avatar Jefferson "Seaplane" McDonough, and Bethany, who is now Cyclone, a black stallion who can only be understood by Finbar. As they rest from their battle with the mandrills, Eddie learns Milo is terminally ill and wants to make amends before he dies, which leads them to reconcile.

Working together, the group traverses to Mt. Zhatmire and finds a river with the same glowing green water Fridge and Martha saw earlier, allowing Spencer, Bethany, and Fridge to return to their original avatars (Bravestone, Oberon, and Finbar respectively) again while Eddie and Milo end up as Ming and Cyclone. Shortly after, Eddie and Milo are captured by Jurgen's soldiers. Spencer, Martha, Fridge, Bethany, and Alex split up to infiltrate the fortress, rescue their teammates and get the Falcon Heart. While scaling the ice wall, Martha asks Spencer why he left his old life and her, and he says her success made him insecure. She consoles him, reminding him that friends are needed most when we feel scared and insecure.

Having successfully rescued Ming and Cyclone, Fridge and Bethany proceed to try fooling Jurgen into giving them the Falcon Heart necklace by claiming to be a pair of brothers he was supposed to meet with. However, they are soon revealed to be lying. The resulting fight allows Jurgen to escape onto his airship followed closely by Spencer. Realizing Jurgen is vulnerable to the Jumanji Berry they collected earlier, Spencer incapacitates Jurgen and sends him falling to his death, allowing him to steal the necklace. Ming and Cyclone (who is revealed to be a Pegasus) fly towards the sky, letting the sunlight touch the necklace, therefore completing the game.

Returning the Falcon Heart to Nigel, Milo decides to stay behind and live out his last days protecting the land. Upon returning to the real world, Spencer teaches his grandfather about video games. Having gotten over his resentment, Eddie convinces Nora, the owner of his old diner, to hire him as a manager.

In a mid-credits scene, a furnace repair man Spencer's mom hired finally shows up, but notices the video game console. Shortly after, several ostriches released by the game, stampede outside Nora's, catching the group's attention.


Awkwafina, Jack Black and Karen Gillan promoting the film.
  • Dwayne Johnson as Dr. Xander "Smolder" Bravestone: A player character who takes the form of a strong, confident archaeologist and explorer. He is first controlled by Eddie and later by Spencer.
    • Johnson also portrays Bravestone's father in a flashback, with Zachary Tzegaegbe portraying the young Bravestone
  • Kevin Hart as Franklin "Mouse" Finbar: A player character who takes the form of a diminutive zoologist and weapons carrier. He is first controlled by Milo and later by Fridge.
  • Jack Black as Professor Sheldon "Shelly" Oberon: A player character who takes the form of an overweight, male expert in many scientific fields. He is first controlled by Fridge and later Bethany, with Martha also briefly controlling him.
  • Karen Gillan as Ruby Roundhouse: A player character who takes the form of a scantily-clad commando. She is primarily controlled by Martha, with Fridge briefly controlling her.
  • Awkwafina as Ming Fleetfoot: A new player character who takes the form of a thief with skills in burglary, pick-pocketing, and lock picking. She is first controlled by Spencer and later Eddie.
  • Nick Jonas as Jefferson "Seaplane" McDonough: A player character who takes the form of an aircraft pilot. He is controlled by Alex.
  • Alex Wolff as Spencer Gilpin: A new college student struggling to adjust to his new life and Martha's boyfriend
  • Morgan Turner as Martha Kaply: Spencer's girlfriend
  • Ser'Darius Blain as Anthony "Fridge" Johnson: A friend of Spencer, Martha, and Bethany
  • Madison Iseman as Bethany Walker: One of the four friends who experienced the previous Jumanji, now a world traveler
  • Danny DeVito as Edward "Eddie" Gilpin: Spencer's grandfather, who resents Milo for selling the diner they co-owned
  • Danny Glover as Milo Walker: Eddie's estranged friend, whose falling out resulted from him selling their diner
  • Rhys Darby as Nigel Billingsley: An NPC who serves as the primary guide for its players
  • Colin Hanks as Alex Vreeke: A previous Jumanji player, now raising a family.
  • Rory McCann as Jurgen the Brutal, an NPC presented as a violent warlord who is responsible for the murders of Bravestone's parents
  • Marin Hinkle as Janice Gilpin: Spencer's mother and Eddie's daughter

Bebe Neuwirth appears as Nora Shepherd, reprising her role from the original 1995 film.[5] Also featured as NPCs in Jumanji are Jennifer Patino as Bravestone's mother, Massi Furlan as crime boss Switchblade, Dania Ramirez as Switchblade's seductive wife, John Ross Bowie as Jurgen's butler Cavendish, and DeObia Oparei as an elevator guard. Danny DeVito's daughter, Lucy DeVito, also portrays the NPC of a maiden and Lamorne Morris plays the heater repairman.[5]



Following the release of Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, Sony began development on the sequel. Kasdan returned to direct the sequel, with Rosenberg and Pinkner again writing the script and Johnson, Hart, Black, and Gillan reprising their roles.[6]

During the film's development, Black confirmed the new film as being a fourth Jumanji film because of Zathura: A Space Adventure (2005), serving as the second film and sharing continuity with the other films of the series, with Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle serving as the third film.[7] According to Kasdan the film used the working title J-19.[5] The film's title was revealed as Jumanji: The Next Level.[8]


Awkwafina, Danny DeVito, and Danny Glover joined the film in January 2019.[9][10] Alex Wolff, Ser'Darius Blain, Madison Iseman, Morgan Turner, and Nick Jonas were hired to reprise their roles in February.[11][12] In March, Dania Ramirez joined the cast of the film.[13] That same month, Rhys Darby was confirmed to reprise his role in the film.[14] Colin Hanks joined to the cast in May to reprise the role.[15]


Filming began on January 21, 2019, and took place in Atlanta, New Mexico, Calgary, Fortress Mountain Resort, Algodones Dunes in California, and Hawaii before wrapping on May 11.[16][17][18] Johnson made a reported $23.5 million for his role.[19]


In the United States and Canada, the film was released on December 13, 2019, in RealD 3D, Dolby Cinema, IMAX, IMAX 3D, 4DX, and ScreenX formats. It was released on December 5 in China, Singapore, Malaysia, and several other Asian countries (and also in the Czech Republic). In the Nordic countries and the Netherlands, the film premiered in cinemas day later. The film's Australian release date was December 26.[20]

Home media[edit]

The film was released on digital by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment on March 3, 2020, and was released on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray, and DVD on March 17.[21][22][23]


Box office[edit]

Jumanji: The Next Level grossed $320.3 million in the United States and Canada, and $479.7 million in other countries, for a worldwide total of $800.1 million, against a production budget of about $125–132 million.[3][4] Deadline Hollywood calculated that the net profit of the film was $236 million.[24]

In the United States and Canada, the film was released alongside Black Christmas and Richard Jewell, and was projected to gross $45–55 million from 4,227 theaters in its opening weekend.[25] The film made $19.7 million on its first day, including $4.7 million from Thursday night previews. It went on to debut to $59.3 million, topping the box office.[4][26][27] It made $26.5 million in its second weekend, finishing second behind Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.[28] The following weekend the film made $35.3 million (a total of $59.2 million over the five-day Christmas period), then $26.5 million the next, remaining in second behind The Rise of Skywalker both times.[29][30] After the COVID-19 pandemic closed most theaters across the U.S. and Canada in March, the film continued to play at drive-ins during the following weeks; it made $217,800 in its 24th weekend and $186,800 in its 25th weekend.[31] The film passed the $800 million mark worldwide on July 7, 2020, thanks to drive-in grosses in the U.S. and theaters re-opening in other countries.[32]

Critical response[edit]

On Rotten Tomatoes the film has an approval rating of 71% based on 246 reviews, with an average rating of 6.1/10. The website's critics consensus reads: "Like many classic games, Jumanji: The Next Level retains core components of what came before while adding enough fresh bits to keep things playable."[33] On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 58 out of 100 based on 37 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".[34] Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "A−" on an A+ to F scale, while those at PostTrak gave it an average 3.5 out of 5 stars, with 58% saying they would definitely recommend it.[4]

Peter Debruge of Variety wrote: "More often than not, effects-driven blockbusters get dumber as the series goes along, but Jumanji: The Next Level invents some fun ideas to keep things fresh." Debruge calls Johnson's Danny DeVito impression "unintentionally hilarious", and is mildly critical of some of the off color jokes, but concludes: "The storytelling may be sloppy in parts, but the cast's collective charisma more than compensates."[35] Peter Travers of Rolling Stone is positive about the remixing of the characters having "major comedy benefits" and Travers welcomes the introduction of Awkwafina. He found the plot difficult to follow and not worth the effort, but says "what matters are the laughs and the FX".[36] Peter Bradshaw of The Guardian wrote: "What gives Jumanji its likability is that it has the emphases and comedy beats of an animation, but also the performance technique of live action – and the occasional reshuffling of avatars and players lets the actors show off a little bit further. Jumanji's next level is rather satisfying."[37]


Dwayne Johnson revealed in an interview that the villain Jurgen the Brutal is actually an avatar of an unknown character, and would be explored in a potential sequel.[38] In March 2020, Jake Kasdan confirmed early developments for a follow-up film.[39][40] Kasdan confirmed plans to maintain the core cast of the previous two films.[41] The following month, the filmmaker stated that the story for the next installment is in development.[5] In November 2021, producer Hiram Garcia confirmed that a pitch was developed and is ready to be presented to the studio after Kasdan finishes his work on the upcoming Red One.[42] The following month he reiterated plans to develop the next Jumanji, once filming on Red One wraps, stating that this time-table works with the actors' busy production schedules.[43]


  1. ^ As depicted in the 2017 film Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle.


  1. ^ "Jumanji: The Next Level". British Film Institute.
  2. ^ "Jumanji: The Next Level". British Board of Film Classification. November 27, 2020. Retrieved December 5, 2020.
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  4. ^ a b c d D'Alessandro, Anthony (December 15, 2019). "How Sony Took 'Jumanji' To 'The Next Level' With A $60M+ Opening; 'Richard Jewell' & 'Black Christmas' Earn Lumps Of Coal". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved November 1, 2020. We hear from solid finance sources that Jumanji: The Next Level cost around $132M net.
  5. ^ a b c d Nemiroff, Perri (April 7, 2020). "Director Jake Kasdan Talks the Status of 'Jumanji 4' & Tricky Franchise Time Travel". Collider.
  6. ^ Fleming, Mike Jr. (February 6, 2018). "Scott Rosenberg & Jeff Pinkner To Write 'Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle' Sequel". Deadline Hollywood. Penske Business Media. Archived from the original on February 7, 2018. Retrieved February 6, 2018.
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  9. ^ Kroll, Justin (January 3, 2019). "Awkwafina Joins Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart in 'Jumanji' Sequel". Variety. Retrieved January 21, 2019.
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  11. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (February 4, 2019). "'Jumanji' Teen Gang Return For Sequel". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved February 4, 2019.
  12. ^ N'Duka, Amanda (February 6, 2019). "Nick Jonas Officially Returning For Sony's 'Jumanji' Sequel". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved February 6, 2019.
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  22. ^ "Jumanji: The Next Level DVD Release Date". DVDs Release Dates. Retrieved February 20, 2020.
  23. ^ "Here Are The Full Home Release Details For 'Jumanji: The Next Level'". The Hollywood News. Retrieved March 10, 2020.
  24. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (April 21, 2020). "'Jumanji: The Next Level' Climbs To No. 10 On Deadline's 2019 Most Valuable Blockbuster Tournament". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved April 22, 2020.
  25. ^ Rubin, Rebecca (December 11, 2019). "Can 'Jumanji' Sequel Achieve Next-Level Box Office Success?". Variety. Retrieved December 11, 2019.
  26. ^ Bean, Travis (December 17, 2019). "'Jumanji: The Next Level': The Latest Billion Dollar Movie". Forbes. Retrieved December 18, 2019.
  27. ^ "Domestic 2019 Weekend 50". Box Office Mojo.
  28. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (December 22, 2019). "'Star Wars: Rise Of Skywalker' Lowers Lightsaber To $177M+, Still 3rd Best December Opening – Monday AM Update". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved December 25, 2019.
  29. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (December 28, 2019). "'Star Wars: Rise Of Skywalker' Chasing 'Last Jedi' With $76M 2nd Weekend; 'Little Women' Not So Tiny With $29M 5-Day". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved December 29, 2019.
  30. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (January 5, 2020). "'Star Wars: Rise Of Skywalker' Dips To $34M+ Third Weekend; 'Grudge' Doesn't Scream With $11M+ & 'F' CinemaScore". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved January 5, 2020.
  31. ^ Anthony D'Alessandro (June 3, 2020). "The 'Trolls World Tour' Has Held The No. 1 Spot At The Box Office Since Opening, Not 'The Wretched' – Update". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved June 3, 2020.
  32. ^ Nancy Tartaglione (July 8, 2020). "'Jumanji: The Next Level' Ups Game To Rock Past $800M At Worldwide Box Office". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved July 9, 2020.
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  37. ^ Bradshaw, Peter (December 10, 2019). "Jumanji: The Next Level review – Dwayne Johnson ups his comedy game". The Guardian.
  38. ^ Reyes, Mike (December 31, 2019). "Dwayne Johnson Reveals Another Jumanji: The Next Level Character Is Actually An Avatar". Cinemablend. Retrieved January 11, 2020.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  39. ^ "Exc: Jake Kasdan talks Jumanji 3 status & why the franchise is so appealing". www.joblo.com. March 20, 2020.
  40. ^ "Exclusive Interview – Jumanji: The Next Level director Jake Kasdan talks nods to the 1995 original, the status of Jumanji 4 and more". Flickering Myth. March 20, 2020.
  41. ^ "Will 'Jumanji 4' Bring Back the Game Cast? Director Jake Kasdan Weighs In". Movieweb. April 6, 2020.
  42. ^ Davis, Brandon (November 5, 2021). "Jumanji 4 Is Coming Sooner Than We Thought (Exclusive)". ComicBook. Retrieved December 10, 2021.
  43. ^ Weintraub, Steve (December 31, 2021). "Exclusive: Producer Hiram Garcia on 'Red Notice', 'Black Adam', the Next 'Jumanji' Sequel, and Dwayne Johnson's Upcoming Schedule". Collider. Retrieved January 5, 2022.

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