Red One: Dwayne Johnson Reveals New Look at J.K. Simmons' Santa Claus

Dwayne Johnson took to social media this week to share a number of new behind-the-scenes shots of J.K. Simmons as a ripped Santa Claus in Red One, the upcoming action-comedy from Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle director Jake Kasdan. The film stars Johnson and Chris Evans in the lead roles, with Simmons as Santa and Bonnie Hunt as Mrs. Claus. Kiernan Shipka (The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina) and Lucy Liu (Charlie's Angels) also star in the film, which feels like the kind of broad adventure comedy that Johnson does best. It's happening amid a marketplace full of unconventional Christmas stories, from Spirited (with Ryan Reynolds and Will Ferrell) to Violent Night (with David Harbour and John Leguizamo).

Plot details are secretive, but the film is "building out a universe of very cool Christmas lore and bad assery all in one," according to Johnson. Another description of Red One describes it as "a globe-trotting, four-quadrant action-adventure comedy, imagining a whole new universe to explore within the holiday genre."

You can see the photos below.

The project hails from Johnson's Seven Bucks, which recently produced Black Adam. Johnson and Kasdan will reunite next in a third Jumanji movie, which has been quietly in development while Kasdan and Johnson focused on Red One, according to a recent interview.

"Jumanji is definitely going to happen," executive producer Hiram Garcia said. "Obviously Jake Kasdan is directing Red One, so right now he's working on that. But we have a ton of Jumanji conversations. We actually have a great take on what we're going to do for the next movie. So I know in talking with Jake, once he comes clear of Red One, that's going to be his next priority for him and that's something we definitely want to make."

It's no surprise Sony is eager to make more; the first Jumanji from Kasdan and company earned almost $1 billion at the global box office, and its sequel pulled in $800 million. With the Men in Black franchise on life support, James Bond likely headed to Amazon, and uneven returns from their Spider-Man universe of characters, the studio will take all the drama-free franchises they can get.

There is no word on the exact release date for Red One, which is expected to drop in 2023.