Rudyard Kipling

junglebooktruth-1

As much as I love the classic early Disney animated films, the 2D animation revival of the 80s and 90s, and the modern 3D computer generated films the studio makes today, I have a real soft spot for the rustic animation from the 60s and 70s. Movies like 101 Dalmatians, Robin Hood, and The Jungle Book have a charm to their style of rough pencil drawings coming through the ink and paint. With The Jungle Book coming out on Blu-ray on February 11, it gave me a chance to revisit this spirited classic, which happens to be the final animated feature that Walt Disney was personally involved with before his death in 1966. Watching this again reminded me of seeing a re-release trailer for the film in the 1980s with a friend, and hearing him exclaim: “There are no bears in the jungle.” This got me thinking… would all the animals in The Jungle Book ever interact in real life?

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The Jungle Book

Over the summer, it was announced that Disney would be opening their vault and re-introducing the world to one of its most beloved classics, The Jungle Book, in the form of a trendy live-action adaptation. I like to imagine that the Disney vault is an actual place in Anaheim guarded by Walt’s cryogenically frozen body, but that’s a theory I should save for my B-movie. Now, The Hollywood Reporter is back with more news about the project, namely that Jon Favreau is in talks with the studio to direct. Favreau is no stranger to directing for the Disney family. After all, he’s the man behind the Iron Man franchise and Elf. After leaving the nest to make an indie called Chef, Favreau has heard the sweet call of the House of Mouse once more, to helm the remake written by Justin Marks. Here’s the thing, though: we all know that The Jungle Book got a delightful live-action adaptation in 1994, right? Mowgli, Baloo, and Bagheera were all brought to life with Cary Elwes, Sam Neill, Lena Headey and John Cleese in supporting roles. John Cleese. Disney has a bit of a thing for turning their animated gems into vehicles with flesh-and-blood movie stars. There haven’t been many, but the list is continuing to expand. After The Jungle Book, 101 Dalmatians had its dog day in 1996 with the star-studded cast of the truly terrifying Glenn Close, her henchmen Mark Williams and Hugh Laurie and an amiable Jeff Daniels as Pongo’s dad Roger. Not […]

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