Disney’s new adaptation of Rudyard Kipling’s classic, The Jungle Book hits theaters in April of this year from the director who gave us Iron Man.
Jon Favreau who directed the first two Iron Man movies for Marvel brings a new fresh modern take in a CGI-live-action remake. The 19th animated feature by Walt Disney was released in October of 1967 and was also the last film to be produced by Walt Disney himself, who died during its production.
Favreau made the decision to cast Scarlett Johansson to play Kaa, originally a male character in the animated 1967 film, as Favreau felt the animated film was “too male-oriented”. Favreau also changed King Louie from an orangutan to a Gigantopithecus due to orangutans are not native to the area in which the films story takes place.
Richard M. Sherman, who wrote songs for the original 1967, is returning to write new songs for this version of “The Jungle Book”. “The Bare Necessities”, originally written by Terry Gilkyson, will also be included and is being sung by Bill Murray who’s voicing Baloo. “Trust in Me” will also be included and sung by Johansson.
The film stars Neel Sethi as Mowgli with the voices of Bill Murray, Ben Kingsley, Idris Elba, Lupita Nyong’o, Scarlett Johansson, Giancarlo Esposito and Christopher Walken.
The Jungle Book Synopsis:
Based on Rudyard Kipling’s timeless stories and inspired by Disney’s classic animated film, The Jungle Book is an all-new live-action epic adventure about Mowgli (newcomer Neel Sethi), a man-cub who’s been raised by a family of wolves. But Mowgli finds he is no longer welcome in the jungle when fearsome tiger Shere Khan (voice of Idris Elba), who bears the scars of Man, promises to eliminate what he sees as a threat. Urged to abandon the only home he’s ever known, Mowgli embarks on a captivating journey of self-discovery, guided by panther-turned-stern mentor Bagheera (voice of Ben Kingsley), and the free-spirited bear Baloo (voice of Bill Murray).
Along the way, Mowgli encounters jungle creatures who don’t exactly have his best interests at heart, including Kaa (voice of Scarlett Johansson), a python whose seductive voice and gaze hypnotizes the man-cub, and the smooth-talking King Louie (voice of Christopher Walken), who tries to coerce Mowgli into giving up the secret to the elusive and deadly red flower: fire. The all-star cast also includes Lupita Nyong’o as the voice of the fiercely protective mother wolf Raksha, and Giancarlo Esposito as the voice of wolf pack’s alpha male Akela.
The Jungle Book blends live-action with photorealistic CGI animals and environments. The adventure swings into theaters on April 15, 2016.