Zach Helm Writing Jumanji Update

He's taking on the new adaptation

This last July, Sony announced that it had been rummaging through its toy chest of properties and had emerged triumphant with Jumanji. President Doug Belgrad announced that the studio would be making a new version of the 1996 film based on Chris Van Allsburg’s 1981 book. Now we know who will get the first crack at the script: Zach Helm.

The writer is probably best known for crafting Stranger Than Fiction and, to a lesser extent, Mr Magorium’s Wonder Emporium. It’ll be his job to bring some modern-day flavour to the story of two kids (played in the original by Kirsten Dunst and Bradley Pierce) who discover the titular game and play it, letting loose a horde of CG animals in the process. Oh, and a man who had become trapped in the game’s world as a child but was now hairy Robin Williams.

Sony isn’t saying what will be done to give the idea a new coat of paint. While Jon Favreau brought space age semi-sequel Zathura to the screen in 2005, we’d imagine the new Jumanji will still stick with animal magic, but probably with a 21st century spin. Wonder if there’ll be an Angry Birds cameo?

The Amazing Spider-Man’s Matt Tolmach is producing the film, which will probably be sat in development for a while yet.