It seems Disney’s trend of creating live-action versions of animated classics has no sign of letting up. The House of Mouse continues with their newest hobby by recreating Rudyard Kipling’s classic story The Jungle Book. While a release date yet to be announced, the film already has more than one famous face attached to it.
Luther star and fangirl favorite Idris Elba will be part of the production. Unfortunately, you won’t be seeing his pretty face in the film. Elba will be lending his voice to play the murderous, arrogant
lion tiger Scar Shere Khan. The actor is currently coming off a banner 2013 after starring in such films as: Pacific Rim, Thor: The Dark World and Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom.
Jon Favreau (Iron Man, Elf) is currently set to direct the film. The film is still in its early stages so there isn’t any news on where it will be filmed or who else is in talks to being cast. But it already has a team of artists and writers on board working on the film.
For me, this film could be a hit or miss for Disney (hoping for a hit, prepared for a miss). While they’ll do great box office wise with both Maleficent and Cinderella, there’s less of a draw for The Jungle Book. In the magic kingdom, princess films reign supreme. Not to say that the film is completely going to bomb at the box office, but the profits will resemble more like the profits of the Chronicles of Narnia and will most likely earn less than the other two adaptations coming out. Disney tried a live-action remake in 1994 but it’s doubtful that anybody even remembers it, even though it earned a 92% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. When talking about classic Disney films most of the time The Jungle Book doesn’t even make the top 10 of people’s lists. 20-somethings who grew up with the cartoon probably have a hard time remembering which one is Bagheera and which animal is Baloo. I’m currently wracking my brain to remember the name of Shere Khan’s snake henchman. This current generation of children can probably do no better with remembering the character’s names. Added into the fact that Disney is currently racing against the clock with Warner Bros. who’s also working on a live-action Jungle Book and this film could end up a mess of production hell and release date purgatory. Sad, because I’m really looking forward to seeing Idris Elba pull shots like this when he dawns a motion capture suit.