Dwayne Johnson Will Go Down-River with Disney’s Latest Ride-to-Film Adaptation ‘Jungle Cruise’
Over the years, Disney’s made a rich tradition out of refashioning their amusement park rides as feature film attractions. There have been successes (Pirates of the Caribbean and its many demon-spawn sequels, and Eddie Murphy vehicle The Haunted Mansion), flops (the Tomorrowland movie, the horrifying Country Bears picture) and whatever Brian De Palma’s Mission to Mars movie was. But the massive entertainment conglomerate has not given up hope on its cross-vertical synergy potential. Today brings the news that yet another of Disney’s thrill-a-minute rides will soon make the jump to the big screen, and let me break it to you now that a hideously insensitive It’s a Small World movie remains, for the moment, an impossible dream/nightmare.
This morning, The Hollywood Reporter ran an item announcing that all systems are go for Jungle Cruise, a big-screen treatment of the attraction present at the majority of Disney’s parks. (Visitors to Disney facilities in Orlando and Anaheim alike can enjoy the diversion.) Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson will star in the adaptation of the ride that takes visitors through various jungle climates, from the rain forests of South America to the lush wilds of Southeast Asia to a safari through the rivers of Africa. The Jungle Cruise ride doesn’t lend itself to plot and characters as easily as Tomorrowland or The Haunted Mansion, though inquiring minds can make the jump to assume that Johnson will take the role of the guide that so-called “Disney Cast Members” handle in real life. (And after having starred in this year’s upcoming Jumanji remake, he’ll have plenty of experience in jungle environs.)
It’s the latest addition to a full schedule for Johnson, a docket that already includes the Baywatch and aforementioned Jumanji remakes later this year, wrestling comedy Fighting with My Family, video game adaptation Rampage, and a high-rise thriller called Skyscraper. I almost don’t want to say it for fear of jinxing, but — are we approaching Dwayne Johnson overexposure levels? Can someone as generously likable as Johnson even get overexposed?