Jumanji is a 1995 American fantasy adventure film directed by Joe Johnston. It is an adaptation of the 1981 children's book of the same name by Chris Van Allsburg. The special effects were provided by Industrial Light & Magic for computer graphic elements and Amalgamated Dynamics for animatronics components.
The story centers on 12-year-old Alan Parrish, who is trapped in Jumanji while playing the game with his friend Sarah in 1969. Twenty-six years later siblings Judy (Kirsten Dunst) and Peter (Bradley Pierce) begin playing and unwittingly release the now-adult Alan (Robin Williams). After tracking down Sarah (Bonnie Hunt), the quartet resolve to finish the game in order to undo all of the destruction it has wrought. The movie also stars David Alan Grier as a hapless shoemaker-turned-police officer, and Jonathan Hyde in a dual role as both Alan's father and Van Pelt, a big-game hunter intent on killing Alan.
Jumanji was shot in Keene, New Hampshire, where the story is set, and in Vancouver, British Columbia. Despite its lukewarm critical reception, the movie was a box office success, earning $262,797,249 worldwide on a budget of approximately $65 million, and was the tenth highest-grossing movie of 1995. In 2005, a spiritual sequel to Jumanji called Zathura was released; it, too, was adapted from a Van Allsburg book.
Robin McLaurin Williams (July 21, 1951 – August 11, 2014) was an American actor and comedian. Starting as a stand-up comedian in San Francisco and Los Angeles, he soon rose to fame as Mork in the TV series Mork & Mindy (1978–82). Williams went on to establish a successful career in both stand-up comedy and feature film acting.
Williams's film career included such acclaimed films as Popeye (1980), The World According to Garp (1982), Good Morning, Vietnam (1987), Dead Poets Society (1989), Awakenings (1990), The Fisher King (1991), and Good Will Hunting (1997), as well as financial successes such as Hook (1991), Aladdin (1992), Mrs. Doubtfire (1993), Jumanji (1995), The Birdcage (1996), Night at the Museum (2006), and Happy Feet (2006). He also appeared in the video "Don't Worry, Be Happy" by Bobby McFerrin.
Williams was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor three times and won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in Good Will Hunting. He also received two Emmy Awards, four Golden Globe Awards, two Screen Actors Guild Awards, and five Grammy Awards. TV producer George Schlatter, who first saw Williams doing stand-up comedy in 1977 and gave him his first TV spot in Laugh-In, recognized Williams's talent immediately, telling friends and associates that Williams "is gonna be an important force. Not just a talent, but an important force in show business." Terry Gilliam, who directed Williams in two films, was awed by his ability to "go from manic to mad to tender and vulnerable," stating that Williams was "the most unique mind on the planet. There's nobody like him out there."
Williams sometimes suffered from depression and struggled with drug and alcohol addiction for much of his career. On August 11, 2014, he was found dead after committing suicide by hanging at his home in Paradise Cay, near Tiburon, California.
R.I.P. Robbin Williams.
His death really is a tragedy.