There was once a time when 2016 was supposed to treat the audiences to two different versions of Rudyard Kipling’s beloved novel The Jungle Book. However, all we got was Disney’s critically and financially successful adaptation/remake. The other adaptation, directed by motion capture actor/guru Andy Serkis has been continually delayed. Now after another name change, we have our first official synopsis for the film.
Serkis’ film began life under the title Jungle Book: Origins. It was then changed to Jungle Book. In October 2017, Serkis said the new working title was Mowgli: Tales from the Jungle Book. Now, Warner Bros. has officially confirmed the film will be called Mowgli.
Here’s the official synopsis for the film, released as part of a preview for Warner Bros. upcoming 2018 film slate:
Blending live action and performance capture, the story follows the upbringing of the human child Mowgli (Rohan Chand) raised by a wolf pack in the jungles of India. As he learns the often-harsh rules of the jungle, under the tutelage of a bear named Baloo (Andy Serkis) and a panther named Bagheera (Christian Bale), Mowgli becomes accepted by the animals of the jungle as one of their own. All but one: the fearsome tiger Shere Khan (Benedict Cumberbatch). But there may be greater dangers lurking in the jungle, as Mowgli comes face to face with his human origins. The other story’s central animal characters are: Kaa, the snake (Cate Blanchett); the leader of the wolf pack, Akela (Peter Mullan); the scavenging hyena, Tabaqui (Tom Hollander); Nisha, the female wolf (Naomie Harris), who adopts the baby Mowgli as one of her cubs; Nisha’s mate, Vihaan (Eddie Marsan); and Mowgli’s Brother Wolf (Jack Reynor).
There are a couple quick takeaways from the synopsis that look to differentiate it from Disney’s version, but so far it seems to be strumming the same chords as the 2016 film. Hopefully Serkis has a couple tricks up his sleeve both in story and special effects.
Mowgli hits theaters October 19, 2018.