Why “Jumanji 3” Should Be Set in Space

Matthew Loffhagen
Sony Pictures
(Photo: Sony Pictures)

Considering that “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” is basically Sony’s biggest movie in the history of the studio, it’s unsurprising that we’ll be getting a sequel.

While some people are referring to this movie as “Jumanji 3”, I like to think of it as the second in the series. I’m expecting this new movie to have more in common with the Dwayne Johnson “Jumanji” than the Robin Williams movie, even if the pair are connected.

So many things in “Welcome to the Jungle” were entirely reinvented. Where the original film is all about the mysticism of an ancient board game, the newer movie is more of a riff on video game tropes. It’s a far better video game movie than “Rampage” could ever hope to be, but I digress.

One of the stars of “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” is dreaming up scenarios for the next movie in the series, and I’m pretty on board with what he has to say.

According to the ever-tenacious Jack Black:

“I say we take this mother into space. ‘Cause my question with Jumanji is, ‘What is this game? Who invented this game?’ It has to be some alien technology. Am I right? Or it’s some crazy jungle medicine man magic. I wanna know where it’s from. Give me some f–king origins, y’all!”

Okay, I’m not entirely on board with the alien idea.

That doesn’t sit well with the series up to this point. I’d prefer to keep a little mysticism intact, and I think it’s better that we don’t have all the answers about where Jumanji the game came from within the canon of this universe.

That said, the idea of going into space? That works!

If the next movie in this series is going to be set in space, it provides an excellent opportunity to poke fun at a bunch of completely different video game tropes.

Jack Black Jumanji
Source: Sony Pictures

“Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” is a boiled down “Tomb Raider” or “Legend of Zelda” game, with all its artefact hunting, quirky NPCs, and magic and mayhem

A future sequel, then, could be a “Metroid” or “Halo”, filled with outer space adventure, claustrophobic environments, and swashbuckling laser battles.

Considering that Peter Jackson’s “Halo” movie has never materialized, this would be the next best thing!

Besides, there’s another reason why I know this formula would work.

Technically, “Welcome to the Jungle” is not the second “Jumanji” movie. In between the original and the soft reboot, there was “Zathura”.

Jumanji in Space

“Zathura” should probably have been a bigger deal than it was. It’s basically “Jumanji” but in space. Except, of course, that Robin Williams has been replaced by pre-“Twilight” Kristen Stewart.

Perhaps that’s why this film didn’t end up getting much attention.

Source: Sony Pictures

“Zathura” is sorta-kinda connected to the “Jumanji” ‘verse, but its outer space adventures are often overlooked because they don’t fit the Robin Williams mold.

Considering that the movie works just fine in spite of its obscurity, I’d love to see some of its big ideas revisited in a future film.

Just let’s avoid going too far into the backstory of the Jumanji boardgame. This would only serve to get in the way of the fun.