It seems that a few days can’t go by without news of Dwayne Johnson starring in another big tentpole movie. Whether it’s DreamWorks’ Alpha Squad, a Big Trouble in Little China remake, a movie based on the arcade game Rampage, a Baywatch movie alongside Zac Efron or, of course, continuing on his role in the Fast and Furious franchise, he’s certainly keeping himself busy these days.
The latest film to add to that list comes in the form of Jungle Cruise, a movie based on the popular Disneyland theme park ride. Now before you judge it too quickly and harshly, let’s not forget that one of the most successful movie franchises in the world, Pirates of the Caribbean, was based on such an attraction.
In fact, the Jungle Cruise project has been around for more than a decade, with the studio obviously hoping they can replicate their Pirates success with it. It got close to being made with Tom Hanks and Tim Allen in starring roles a few years back but evidently that version never materialized. While that one was set to be a much more modern take, this is being described as harkening back to the like of The African Queen for its transportive, adventurous feel.
In case you don’t know what Jungle Cruise is, basically it’s a retro adventure ride that transports people into various different exotic African locales including the Amazon Jungle and the Nile and Congo Rivers, encountering rhinos, hippos, elephants and even piranhas along the way. It’s one of Disney’s oldest and most loved rides. Can that translate into big-screen dollars?
The studio has set John Requa and Glenn Ficarra to write the screenplay, the duo who worked together on romantic comedy Crazy, Stupid, Love and the recent Will Smith con man movie Focus. They’ll certainly have a job of it moulding a plot out of the ride’s premise but hey, they did it with PotC, right? No director has been set yet but it seems like the sort of thing that Chris Columbus would wanna do, or maybe even Johnson’s frequent Journey 2: The Center of the Earth/San Andreas/Rampage director Brad Peyton.
Disney hasn’t set a date yet.