Andy Serkis’ Jungle Book Is Now Called Mowgli

serkis snoke

by Owen Williams |
Published on

First it was The Jungle Book. Then it was Jungle Book: Origins. But now studio Warner Bros have finally settled on the title for [Andy Serkis](Andy Serkis' performance-captured Rudyard Kipling adaptation. It'll be called Mowgli.

Warners have also released an official synopsis for the film, which runs thusly: "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 (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).

The movie has already seen a couple of release date changes, and had the disadvantage of arriving a while after Jon Favreau's own Jungle Book for Disney. But Serkis was keen to explain that the delay worked in Mowgli's favour.

"Every minute more that we have to evolve the technological pipeline will make all the difference," he said in a Facebook post. "The ambition for this project is huge. What we are attempting is an unprecedented level of psychological and emotional nuance in morphing the phenomenal performances of our cast into the facial expressions of our animals. We are breaking new ground with realistic non-humanoid animal faces, such as a panther or wolf, ensuring that they convincingly communicate with human language and emotion via performance capture, and are able to stand up to real scrutiny in richly complex dramatic scenes. So hang on in there... This is truly next generation storytelling, and it will be the real deal."

Mowgli is out in the UK on October 19, 2018.

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