The long awaited Disney’s Jungle Book in 3D is here! The 3D experience will immerse you and your family into the jungle with live animals and high tech. It’s an experience the whole family will love. Unlike the original movie, the new movie is not a musical. The new version is a live-action technology packed epic adventure with personable animals that are larger than life. The unique character qualities and personality pay homage to the original film and is a must see for all families!
The Jungle Book stars Neel Sethi as Mowgli, Bill Murray as Baloo, Sir Ben Kingsley as Bagheera, Lupita Nyong’o as Raksha, Idris Elba as Shere Kahn, Christopher Walken as King Louie and Giancarlo Esposito as Akela. The film was directed by Jon Favreau and produced by Brigham Taylor.
“The Jungle Book,” was published in 1894 and features a collection of tales of the Indian subcontinent, many of them featuring Mowgli, a boy raised by wolves. “The Second Jungle Book” followed in 1895, which was the basis for the immensely popular and endearing 1967 Walt Disney animated film.
Disney’s 1967 animated film, “The Jungle Book,” was the last film that Walt Disney oversaw. He passed away in 1966, the year before the film’s release. Director Jon Favreau was inspired by more than the 1967 movie. “When I think about Disney’s legacy, I relate to Walt’s original dream,” he says. “Walt Disney’s work has influenced my work. He was considered high tech for the time. He was the first person who locked soundtrack with picture, so the characters were perfectly choreographed to the musical score—something that absolutely blew people’s minds. Disney was on the cutting edge of technology.”
Disney’s 2016 animated 3D film takes the best of animation and the best of live action to create life like characters with unique qualities, personalities and emotions which pay homage to the original film. Baloo introduces Mowgli to the fun aspects of the jungle. King Louis is a gigantic gorilla who is the King of the Jungle. Kaa the snake is a storyteller and Raksha the eternal mother and protector. Akela is the Alpha wolf and Bagheera.
12 FUN FACTS To Share
- At full stretch, Baloo can reach nearly 15 feet high. The free-spirited bear is so heavy and sports so much fur, he took nearly five hours per frame to render.
- Mother wolf Raksha is aptly named. In Hindi, Raksha means protector.
- Artists at WETA took some creative license when it came to King Louie, borrowing a legendary character—Gigantopithecus—and exaggerating his size. King Louie stands 12 feet tall.
- Mowgli sports a red loincloth in the film, but costume designer Laura Jean Shannon had her work cut out for her. “Mowgli’s immersed in water and mud, he gets rained on, he runs,” says Shannon. “We even rigged a hidden safety harness into the costume because Mowgli hangs on tree limbs and cliffs. Each of the loincloths—we ended up with 16 or 17—had a very specific purpose.” • Shannon built a “suit of armor” from the leaves of an alocasia tree (known as elephant ear plant). The garment showcased how the intelligent man-cub would protect himself from angry bees before collecting honey for Baloo.
- The team at Moving Picture Company (MPC) were responsible for animating more than 70 species, crafting 100 million leaves and simulating earth, fire and water. A team of more than 800 computer graphics artists spent more than a year on the project.
- Artists digitally built most of the jungle environment that appears in the film, creating moss, bark, rock, water, grass, trees, leaves that were all inspired by their real-life counterparts in India. The virtual environment makes up 80 percent of the film frame 100 percent of the time.
- Filmmakers utilized motion capture technology to help them visualize the entire film prior to live-action production kicking off. The process involves special body suits adorned with dots that translate into the computer. Even director Jon Favreau suited up for select scenes. 2
- One of the challenges filmmakers faced by pairing a liveaction Mowgli with computer-generated animal counterparts was that the CG creatures were unable to cast shadows on real-life Mowgli. Visual effects supervisor Rob Legato developed a system that allowed filmmakers to project light and shadows onto Mowgli that represent the creatures that are moving near him.
- Mowgli deals with a lot of honey in “The Jungle Book.” The sweet stuff proved challenging for filmmakers, who wanted it to look authentic—yet still appealing. Color and viscosity had to be considered, as well as how to make the honeycomb it comes in.
- The iconic song “The Bare Necessities,” written by Terry Gilkyson, was nominated for an Academy Award® in 1968.
- Composer John Debney, who wrote the score for the new, liveaction film “The Jungle Book,” is the son of Louis Debney, who worked for Walt Disney. “When I was a youngster, they were making this incredible magical film called ‘The Jungle Book,’ and I was sort of a studio brat,” says Debney. “I got to know the young man Bruce Reitherman who played Mowgli. We would go on adventures around the world with his family.”
- According to actor Ben Kinglsey, author Rudyard Kipling’s characters are part of being young in the U.K. “Before a boy in the U.K. joins the Boy Scouts, he joins the Cubs,” says Kingsley. “And our Cub Chief was always called Akela. In fact, all the Scouts’ names come from Kipling’s writings.”
THE JUNGLE BOOK opens in theatres everywhere in 3D, RealD 3D, and IMAX 3D on April 15th! For additional information visit the official THE JUNGLE BOOK website.