Scarlett Johansson Was Almost Cast And Other Facts About The Original ‘Jumanji’

Features Writer

Released back in 1995, Jumanji tells the story of Alan Parrish, a boy who gets trapped inside a board game for 26 years, only to return once the game is unearthed by the Shephard siblings, Judy (Kristen Dunst) and Peter (Bradley Pierce). Now an unshaven, half-feral adult, Alan (Robin Williams) has to use all his cunning to finish the game and save his town from being overrun by savage plants and animals.

With a new Jumanji movie slated to continue the story of the mysterious board game and its chaotic real-world consequences, we thought we’d take a moment to remember the whimsical terror of the original with these fascinating facts.

Scarlett Johannson Auditioned For Judy

The future A-lister read for the part of Judy, though the part would end up going to Kristen Dunst. While the young ScarJo’s reading was solid, Dunst had already shown an uncommon maturity playing Claudia in Interview with the Vampire the year prior, and seemed to have a real understanding of the character. She explained to The Chicago Tribune in 1995 that she thought Judy was a mostly normal kid, but had trouble accepting the death of her parents, so “she deals with it through her lies.”

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