Benedict Cumberbatch is the first cast member to be named to Warner Bros.’ version of Rudyard Kipling’s beloved classic The Jungle Book as the greatly feared tiger Shere Khan. Cate Blanchett and Christian Bale and others have now been cast in The Jungle Book: Origins.
The Jungle Book‘s Shere Khan will be the second villainous Khan played by Benedict Cumberbatch. He brilliantly portrayed the sinister Khan Noonian Singh in Star Trek Into Darkness in 2013. He has also lent his chilling voice to the dragon Smaug in the Hobbit movie series.
Shere Khan is arrogant and believes himself to be smarter than any other character in The Jungle Book. These again are traits to which Benedict Cumberbatch is no stranger, because that is exactly the character he depicts in his role as the inimitable Sherlock Holmes in BBC’s Sherlock.
With a history like that, Cumberbatch may prove to be the perfect choice for the voice of the dark antagonist to The Jungle Book‘s Mowgli.
Listen to Benedict as Khan Noonian Singh in the Star Trek movie and imagine that as the voice of the cold-blooded tiger:
Disney is working on its own Jungle Book. The Inquisitr previously reported that the Disney version is slated to be released in October 2015, and will star Bill Murray, Scarlett Johansson, Christopher Walken, and Giancarlo Esposito. Idris Elba will be voicing Shere Khan for Disney’s adaptation.
This will be no Disney version of The Jungle Book. The Warner Bros. version looks to be darker and more sinister than previous versions, as may be inferred by many of the people coming together for the project, which will combine CG animation, motion capture, and live action.
The Jungle Book: Origins script is being written by Callie Cloves, according to The Mirror. She is the daughter of Steve Cloves, screenwriter for many of the Harry Potter films. Her father will be producing The Jungle Book movie, along with Jonathan Cavendish.
Directing will be Andy Serkis, who came to fame for his ground-breaking work in motion capture in The Lord of the Rings. He and Cumberbatch have worked together in The Hobbit.
Hollywood Reporter reports that Serkis will also take on a role in The Jungle Book: Origins as Baloo, the kind-hearted bear.
Cate Blanchett (Galadriel in The Lord of the Rings) will be the voice of Kaa, the hypnotic python, and Christian Bale (Batman) is set to play Bagheera, the black panther who joins Baloo and Kaa as defender and friend of Mowgli, the jungle boy, but is fearsome to his enemies.
Mowgli will be portrayed by Rohan Chand, who first appeared in film as Adam Sandler’s adopted son in Jack and Jill (2011).
Rounding out the cast of The Jungle Book: Origins is Peter Mullen as Akela, the great gray lone wolf who leads the pack that adopts Mowgli. Naomie Harris will be Mowgli’s wolf mother Nisha, and Eddie Marsan, her mate Vihaan.
The Jungle Book: Origins is set for release on October 21, 2016, reports Entertainment Weekly, a full year after the Disney version. What do you think of Warner Bros.’ casting choices? Which version of The Jungle Book are you most looking forward to – Disney or Warner Bros?