As it frequently happens in Hollywood, there are two "Jungle Book" films coming out in the next few years. The film releasing first by way of Disney is Jon Favreau's "The Jungle Book", which will hit theatres next year. Andy Serkis is making his directorial debut with "Jungle Book: Origins" coming out of Warner Bros., which will release in 2016. Now we have some rather impressive casting updates on that one.
The wonderful Benedict Cumberbatch will be voicing the main villain Shere Khan in Serkis' film. Christian Bale will be lending his vocal talents to the role of Bagheera the panther, while the wonderful Cate Blanchett will be bringing Kaa to life. Naomie Harris from "Skyfall" will be portraying the wolf Nisha and Rohan Chand from Jason Bateman's "Bad Words" will play the main young boy in the film, Mowgli. To wrap up the impressive cast, Serkis will be voicing the most lovable bear of them all, Baloo, in his own film.
In the Disney film, Idris Elba will be voicing Shere Khan. Both Cumberbatch and Elba have incredibly distinctive and silky voices, so they both feel like great picks for that character. Ben Kingsley will be voicing Bagheera in that version, as well as Scarlett Johansson portraying Kaa.
Favreau's "Chef", which released earlier this year, critically won the hearts of everyone that watched it. His body of work is certainly fantastic and he should put a unique spin on his "Jungle Book" adaptation. Contrast that with Serkis, who, beyond just his incredible performance capture abilities as seen recently in "Dawn of the Planet of the Apes", served as a 2nd unit director for "The Hobbit" trilogy", so should hopefully prove to have a good eye of his own.
Out of these two projects, which one are you the most excited about? Let us know in the comments section below!
"The Jungle Book" will hit AMC Theatres on October 9th, 2015
"Jungle Book: Origins" will open on October 21st, 2016
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