Published On: Thu, Aug 21st, 2014

Benedict Cumberbatch, Christian Bale, Naomie Harris, Cate Blanchett up for ‘Jungle Book: Origins’

Andy Serkis has moved quickly to cast the voice actor for his Jungle Book adaptation, casting Hollywood big names: Benedict Cumberbatch, Christian Bale, Naomie Harris and Cate Blanchett. Titled Jungle Book: Origins, the film should not be confused with the live-action Disney project based on similar source material.

Jungle Book cast of charactersCumberbatch has signed on to voice the villainous Shere Khan in Warner Bros.’ Jungle Book: Origins, as The Hollywood Reporter first reported Tuesday. It was the first voice lead that motion-capture guru Andy Serkis has cast for his directorial debut, scheduled for release Oct. 21, 2016

Rohan Chand, who has role in Lone Survivor, Bad Words and The Hundred-Foot Journey, will play the main character Mowgli. The former Batman, Bale will voice the boy’s panther mentor Bagheera.

Blanchett, more famous now for her role as Galadriel in the LOTR and Hobbit trilogies than playing Katharine Hepburn in The Aviator, will lend her voice to Kaa, teh hypnotic python.

Serkis will portray Baloo, bringing his expertise as a motion capture expert to life once again. He’s famous for his role as Gollum, working alongside Cumberbatch as Smaug and for his role as Caesar in the rebooted Planet of the Apes films.

Peter Mullan will voice Akela, leader of the wolf pack that raises Mowgli, with Harris and Eddie Marsan playing wolf couple Nish and Vihaan. Transformers: Age of Extinction star Jack Reynor will play “Brother Wolf.”

Tom Hollander has also joined the production as Tabaqui, a jackal who serves as one of Shere Khan’s underlings.

The adaptation of the Rudyard Kipling classic was written by first timer Callie Kloves.

Jungle Book: Origins arrives in theaters on October 21, 2016.

Disney live action adaptation, titled The Jungle Book, will arrive in 2015 with Neel Sethi, Idris Elba, Bill Murray, Scarlett Johansson, Ben Kingsley, Christopher Walken, Lupita Nyong’O, Giovanni Esposito and directed by Jon Favreau (Iron Man, Elf, Swingers).

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About the Author

- Stephen is a contributor and writer on The Dispatch. Stephen is the founder and editor for the Steven Spielberg Fan Club website and contributes to pop culture stories on The Dispatch, especially upcoming movie news. Beginning in 2016, Stephen took the role of Managing Editor for the Tampa Dispatch.

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