'Crazy Rich Asians' Star Awkwafina Joins 'Jumanji' Sequel, Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson Confirms

Crazy Rich Asians scene-stealer Awkwafina will star in the sequel to Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, star Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson confirmed on Twitter.

On Thursday, The Hollywood Reporter confirmed Awkwafina was in "final negotiations" to star in the film. Sources told the outlet that her character is "key" and "significant" to the plot.

On Saturday afternoon, Johnson tweeted that she will be in the movie.

"She’s ready to play in JUMANJI! Welcome the super talented [Awkwafina] to our cast! She lit it up in Crazy Rich Asians and it’s gonna be so much fun workin’ with her," Johnson wrote. "Can’t wait. And when [Kevin Hart] annoys you on set, just do what I do and kick him in the balls."

Johnson also celebrated the recent casting of Danny DeVito in the new movie.

"He wants to play the game that plays you. Welcome [DeVito] to our JUMANJI cast! Can’t wait my friend. Oh the fun we will have, if... you just call out it’s name," Johnson wrote.

The new movie will bring back Johnson, Kevin Hart, Jack Black and Karen Gillan, as well as director Jake Kasdan. Scott Rosenberg and Jeff Pinkner are returning to co-write the script with Kasdan. The producers are Matt Tolmach, Kasdan and Johnson's Seven Bucks production banner.

Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle became a surprise blockbuster when it hit theaters over the 2017 holiday season. The film made $962 million worldwide and was a follow-up to the 1995 Robin Williams movie.

The franchise is inspired by the Chris Van Allsburg children's book about a magical board game that brings wild jungle animals to life. In Welcome to the Jungle, the premise was switched, with a quartet of children going into the game and the adult stars playing their video game avatars.

Awkwafina, whose real name is Nora Lum, began her career as a rapper and performed at the 2014 Festival Supreme, hosted by Black's Tenacious D. In 2014, she joined MTV's Girl Code before picking up a supporting role in 2016's Neighbors 2: Sorority Rising.

Last year was Awkwafina's breakout year thanks to roles in Ocean's 8 and Crazy Rich Asians. In October, she hosted an episode of Saturday Night Live. In December, Collider reported that Awkwafina and Tiffay Haddish are in talks ot join a female-led follow-up to the 21 Jump Street movies.


Awkwafina also stars in Alice Waddington's Paradise Hills, opposite Eiza Gonzalez and Emma Roberts. The film will debut at the Sundance Film Festival later this month.

Photo credit: Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for HFA