‘The Jungle Book’ Comes to Life in Disney Revamp

Big cats Bagheera and Shere Khan are voiced by Ben Kingsley and Idris Elba, respectively.

Big cats Bagheera and Shere Khan are voiced by Ben Kingsley and Idris Elba, respectively.

Anyone who loves cats (and Disney) has probably seen animated classic, “The Jungle Book.” Perhaps you’ve even read the Rudyard Kipling book the film is based on (if you haven’t, please do). The feature-length cartoon featured two cats who were important to the story: Bagheera, a black panther, and Shere Khan, a Bengal tiger.

Bagheera finds Mowgli, an orphaned boy, and brings him to a wolf to be raised. Bagheera even saves Mowgli from a snake named Kaa. Shere Khan, on the other hand, is the opposite of the panther. He has no desire to help Mowgli; instead, the tiger wants to eat him. On paper it sounds like a pretty scary premise for a child, but Disney’s animated version made it kid-friendly, especially with all the fun songs. Remember “The Bare Necessities” and “I Wanna Be Like You”?

Now there’s a live-action version of the classic story. Directed by Jon Favreau and voiced by Bill Murray (Baloo), Scarlett Johannson (Kaa), Idris Elba (Shere Khan), Ben Kingsley (Bagheera), Christopher Walken (King Louie) and more, this film looks quite a bit scarier than its animated original. Shere Khan is intimidating and likely to frighten small children (I’d stick with the animated version for toddlers), but seeing these big cats on screen promises to be nothing short of cool.

Will you see “The Jungle Book” when it comes out in the spring of 2016?

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