Jon Favreau’s latest film as director ‘The Jungle Book’ is released in Irish cinemas this week. The film is the story of Mowgli (Neel Sethi) who, for all of his young life, has been raised in the jungle, having been found by the panther Bagheera (Ben Kingsley), and adopted by a wolf pack. When the tiger Shere Khan (Idris Elba) discovers there is a “man cub” living in the jungle, he vows not to rest until Mowgli is dead. Bagheera takes Mowgli on a journey to the man village to protect him, and Mowgli makes some new friends and enemies along the way.
To celebrate the release of Disney’s highly anticipated new movie, Movies.ie have gathered together 10 facts about ‘The Jungle Book’. Keep reading to find out more…
1. Source Material
‘The Jungle Book’ is inspired by a book of the same name by Rudyard Kipling. The stories, written for Kipling’s daughter Josephine, were first published in magazines and are morality tales based around Kipling’s experiences as a child in India.
2. Not to be Confused…
‘The Jungle Book’ is the first of two movies based on Kipling’s stories due to be released in the next 18 months. The second, directed by Andy Serkis, is titled ‘Jungle Book: Origins’ and stars Cate Blanchett, Benedict Cumberbatch and Christian Bale.
3. Family Ties
Bill Murray provides the voice for Baloo the bear in this new version of ‘The Jungle Book’. Interestingly, his brother Brian Doyle-Murray voived the same character in the 1998 film ‘The Jungle Book: Mowgli’s Story’.
4. First time for Everything
‘The Jungle Book’ marks the first time that Bill Murray has starred in a Disney movie. The actor previously voiced animated characters in ‘Osmosis Jones’ and ‘Fantastic Mr Fox’, and provided the voice of Garfield the cat in two live action films.
5. … And a second time for everything
‘The Jungle Book’ marks he second time Idris Elba has provided a voice for a Disney movie in one year! Elba plays Shere Khan in this film, and lent his voice to Chief Bogo in ‘Zootropolis’.
‘The Jungle Book’ reunites Bill Murray with his ‘Lost in Translation’ co-star Scarlett Johansson for the first time since their adventures in friendship in Japan.
As well as being closer to the book than the 1967 film, in this version of ‘The Jungle Book’ Kaa the snake is shown to be female. The character is voiced by Scarlett Johansson and director Jon Favreau said he made the change deliberately since he felt there was a lack of female roles in the film.
Naomi Watts and Live Schieber’s children voice the wolf cubs in ‘The Jungle Book’, and Jon Favreau’s children also make voice appearances in the film.
9. Last Role
Sadly, ‘The Jungle Book’ is the last film performance from comedian Garry Shandling, who plays the porcupine Ikki. Shandling died of a heart attack earlier this year.
10. When can I see ‘The Jungle Book’?
‘The Jungle Book’ is released in Irish cinemas on April 15th 2016. Watch the trailer below…