Get ready to scream “JUMANJI!” because that’s the only way you’ll be able to escape our latest news surrounding the franchise. That may be a bit of a stretch. As it turns out, your latest encounter with Jumanji will release you from its grasp after you check out, go through the turnstiles, or cash out at the register. That’s right, Jumanji is expanding its empire. Today, Sony Pictures and Merlin Entertainments have announced a deal which will bring a slew of new interactive opportunities to fans of the movies in the form of theme park attractions, retail outlets, themed hotel rooms, and more. Coming to a location near you (if you live or happen to be in Europe and North America), the new Jumanji-based features will be soon put in place at Merlin’s Resort Theme Parks and Waterparks.
The news comes just a month before the grand opening of the premiere ride based on the high stakes board game centered films, which is slated to allow visitors to line up in April at Merlin’s Gardaland Resort in Italy. “Jumanji – the Adventure” will take those daring enough to board it on a thrilling tour through the dark jungles of Jumanji. Pitfalls and harrowing sights are behind every twist and turn of the ride. Wondering if you can take your younger travelers along on such an adventure-filled attraction? “Jumanji – the Adventure” was designed specifically with them in mind, planning just the right amount of thrill into its engineering. Gardaland Resort will be pairing the ride debut with the Jumanji treatment inside its hotel walls as several rooms will be decked out in a theme that reflects the park’s new ride.
Jumanji first wowed audiences everywhere in 1995 with a stacked cast that included Robin Williams, Bonnie Hunt, Kirsten Dunst, Bradley Pierce, and Jonathan Hyde. With a roll of a die, lives were changed forever, and wild creatures were released upon the real world, causing chaos in their wake. The comedy-adventure was an immediate hit, and although its ending set the film up for a sequel, fans wouldn’t be given the next part of the story until over two decades later when Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle was released in 2017 with 2019’s Jumanji: The Next Level to follow. The new films took audiences on a fresh journey with another A-list cast including Dwayne Johnson, Jack Black, Kevin Hart, and Karen Gillan.
As far as the world of amusement parks go, this latest rollout of Jumanji-based attractions is a great move on behalf of Sony and Merlin. With Merlin’s track record currently offering visitors interactive situations with their favorite characters from Marvel, Peppa Pig, and more, the Jumanji brand is just giving customers another reason to pass through the turnstiles and live their own board game based adventure, just hopefully without all the giant mosquitos.