Director Jon Favreau is already in production on his nearly entirely CG-animated The Jungle Book for Disney, but Warner Bros. has now filled out the cast for its own adaptation of the Rudyard Kipling story. Andy Serkis directs the terribly titled Jungle Book: Origins, and fresh off the news that Benedict Cumberbatch will be voicing Shere Khan, THR reports that Christian Bale, Cate Blanchett, Naomie Harris, Tom Hollander, Eddie Marsan, and Peter Mullan have joined the cast. Moreover, Bad Words star Rohan Chand has been selected to fill the live-action role of Mowgli. The film will be a mix of motion-capture, CG animation, and live-action with Serkis also set to star as Baloo.
Hit the jump to find out who the aforementioned actors will be playing in Jungle Book: Origins.
Per THR, Bale is onboard to voice the role of Begheera the panther, Blanchett will voice Kaa the sinister python, and Pirates of the Caribbean star Hollander will voice the jackal Tabaqui, an underling of Shere Khan. Additionally, Trainspotting actor Mullan will play Akela, the leader of the wolf pack that raises Mowgli, Harris will play the wolf Nisha, and The World’s End standout Marsan will play Nisha’s mate Vihaan.
It’s unclear which of these characters will be motion-capture and which will be CG animation, or even whether Bale, Blanchett, etc. will actually perform motion-capture or just simply provide the voices. Serkis has been at the forefront of the motion-capture technology movement since The Lord of the Rings, so it should be interesting to see how he puts together his first directorial feature.
The script for Jungle Book: Origins was written by Harry Potter scribe Steve Kloves’ daughter Callie Kloves, with Steve Kloves acting as a producer on the film. Production will likely get underway soon as the film is scheduled to open in theaters on October 21, 2016, almost exactly a year after Disney’s version hits theaters.