Jumanji: The Next Level is proving that it came to play at the box office, scoring a massive global opening over the second weekend in December. On the heel's of Sony's success in relaunching the Jumanji franchise with Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle in 2017, The Next Level upped the stakes and scale but also might have had a bit more confidence than its predecessor. Whereas Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle wrapped things up and destroyed the Jumanji game in its story as a means to prevent anyone from journeying back to the game's world for another adventure, Jumanji: The Next Level heavily implied there is another movie on the way and simultaneously paid homage to the original Jumanji movie from 1995.
Warning: Spoilers for Jumanji: The Next Level follow!
Before the credits would finish rolling in Jumanji: The Next Level, the world of Jumanji had somehow escaped and made its way to the real world. A pack of ostriches went sprinting down the street past Nora's restaurant, marking the return of not only the idea of these wild animals wreaking havoc in a small town but also bringing back original Jumanji star Bebe Neuwirth. According to Jumanji: The Next Level director Jake Kasdan, the end tease is "suggesting" that the next movie will deal with Jumanji in the real world.
"I think that when you make a second one you have to at least open yourself to the possibility that there could be another one," Kasdan told ComicBook.com. "Most crucially to me is that this movie had to stand on its own. It was like, 'We're going to tell the story about Spencer and Martha. We're going to tell the story about Eddie and Milo,' and that's this meal. But I feel like you don't want it to be, if there were another one, you would want there to be some sense of continuation instead of being completely episodic and I do think that's a bitching idea."
Producers Matt Tolmach and Hiram Garcia echoed a similar sentiment. "The beauty is the possibilities are limitless," Garcia said, noting that the sequel stories and opportunities are determined by what the crowd responds to most. "I think for us we thought that was a fun way to sprinkle, sprinkle a little history in there and kind of nostalgia and see how the fans respond to it."
"I mean first and foremost it was a homage," Tolmach added. "I think it's fun, the idea that in the last movie you get to sort of breath like, 'Okay, everything's going to be fine, and we're home and we're safe.' And the idea that not everything is going to be fine, whatever that means. It's just a fun way. When we re-tested it, audiences went nuts."
Certainly, if Sony had their way, the studio would be cranking out another Jumanji film in two years time to keep the momentum of these successful outings. Whether or not Kasdan and the cast will be able to create a worthy follow-up and have schedules allowing them to come together again assuming the film is immediately green lit, well, that's the real challenge here. Tolmach and Garcia do admit they have more dream-casting ideas in the vein of Danny Glover and Danny DeVito's roles in The Next Level but they're not ready to put those out in the world just yet.
Do you like the idea of Jumanji: The Next Level being followed up with another film which is not set inside of the game but rather in the real world with the game escaping? Share your thoughts in the comment section or send them my way on Instagram and Twitter!
Jumanji: The Next Level is now playing in theaters.