Two years ago, moviegoers had one version of Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book, directed by Jon Favreau and which received favourable reviews.
Andy Serkis had reportedly planned to release his adaptation of the book in 2016 as well, but postponed his film to 2018 instead. So now we finally get a trailer for his movie, Mowgli, and it’s safe to say his vision is a lot darker than Favreau’s.
On IMDB, Serkis gives his commentary on the trailer: “The Jungle Book has had many interpretations, but what we’re doing with this movie is setting it very, very closely to the tone and the period that it was written in – in the late 19th century, in colonial India.”
This being a Serkis film – he famously portrayed Gollum in The Lord Of The Rings and King Kong in director Peter Jackson’s 2005 film – Serkis got his actors to embody the animals they’re playing via motion capture.
Among the cast are Christian Bale (as cunning panther Bagheera), Cate Blanchett (sinister snake Kaa), Benedict Cumberbatch (fearsome tiger Shere Khan) and Naomie Harris (the wolf Nisha who adopts baby Mowgli as her cub). Serkis himself plays wise bear Baloo.
The story follows the upbringing of a human child (Rohan Chand), raised by a pack of wolves in the jungles of India, while mentored by a bear and panther. Though Mowgli survives, there are dangers lurking everywhere in the form of a tiger… and the humans, of course.