Jungle Cruise is an upcoming American adventure film based on the Disney theme park attraction of the same name and produced by Walt Disney Pictures. Directed by Jaume Collet-Serra from a screenplay written by Michael Green, Glenn Ficarra and John Requa, based on a story by Ficarra and Requa, the film stars Dwayne Johnson, Emily Blunt, Édgar Ramírez, Jack Whitehall, Jesse Plemons, and Paul Giamatti.

Jungle Cruise is scheduled to be released on July 30, 2021 by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures.

Premise

Set during the early 20th century, a riverboat captain named Frank takes a scientist and her brother on a mission into a jungle to find the Tree of Life which is believed to possess healing powers. All the while, the trio must fight against dangerous wild animals and a competing German expedition.

Cast

  • Dwayne Johnson as Frank, a riverboat captain.
  • Emily Blunt as Lily Houghton, a scientist searching for a tree’s magical cure.
  • Édgar Ramírez as an unnamed villain
  • Jack Whitehall as McGregor Houghton, Lily’s younger brother.
  • Jesse Plemons as an unnamed villain
  • Paul Giamatti as Brooks
  • Andy Nyman as Sir James Hobbs-Cunningham
  • Quim Gutiérrez as an unnamed villain
  • Veronica Falcon
  • Dani Rovira
  • Simone Lockhart as Anna
  • Aidan Taggart
  • Colin McFarlane

Production

Development

In September 2004, it was announced that Jungle Cruise would be developed for Mandeville Films, with a script by Josh Goldstein & John Norville. The film was loosely inspired by the theme park attraction of the same name. The film was announced to take place within the twentieth century. In February 2011, it was announced that Toy Story stars Tom Hanks and Tim Allen would star in the long-gestating film, with a script to be written by Roger S. H. Schulman.

In December 2018, it was reported that actor Jack Whitehall’s character would be gay and would have a coming out scene in the film with Dwayne Johnson. This would be the second incidence of a gay character in a Disney film, the first being Le Fou, portrayed by Josh Gad, in the 2017 live-action adaptation of Beauty and the Beast. There was some backlash over the report, with a few expressing outrage over a straight man being cast as a “camp” gay character.

Casting

In August 2015, it was announced that Walt Disney Pictures was redeveloping its film adaptation based on Jungle Cruises, to star Dwayne Johnson. The script will be written by John Requa and Glenn Ficarra, and the film will be produced by John Davis and John Fox. The film is intended to hark back to its period roots. In April 2017, Johnson expressed his interest in having Patty Jenkins helm the project. In July 2017, Jaume Collet-Serra was announced as the director of the film.

In January 2018, Emily Blunt joined the cast. The same month, Michael Green was reported to have rewritten the script, previously worked on by Patrick McKay and J.D. Payne. In March 2018, Jack Whitehall joined the cast to portray the brother of Blunt’s character, although there was some social media backlash about a straight actor playing a “camp gay character”. In April 2018, Édgar Ramírez and Jesse Plemons joined the cast to portray villains with the former being “a man with a conquistador background”. In May 2018, Paul Giamatti joined the cast to portray a “crusty harbormaster.” In June 2018, Quim Gutiérrez joined the cast to portray one of the villains.

Filming

Principal photography began on May 14, 2018, in Hawaii. Filming wrapped on September 14.

Post-production

Joel Negron will serve as editor. DNEG, Industrial Light & Magic, Rodeo FX and Weta Digital will be providing the effects for the film.

Music

On January 23, 2019, it was announced that James Newton Howard is set to create the musical score of the film.

Release

Jungle Cruise is scheduled to be released on July 30, 2021. Initially, it was slated for October 11, 2019 before being delayed to July 24, 2020, and was delayed to July 30, 2021 with the live-action adaptation of Mulan taking its slot due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Marketing

On October 11, 2019, a first official trailer and a teaser poster were released. On March 10, 2020, another trailer and a theatrical poster were released.

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