Andy Serkis talks THE JUNGLE BOOK – Keeping it dark

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It’s not that we haven’t seen enough Jungle Book movies in the past, but that the majority of them have been rather too happy. Singing bears, goofy snakes and a hapless hero who should be dead by all rights, are trademarks of this approach. And with more than one new Jungle Book film on the way, the bear necessities will keep the merriment rather positive. Unless you’re in the film that Andy Serkis happens to be directing, that is.

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Having just landed the gig, Serkis chatted to THR, and explained how his film would keep the darker influences intact, in the same manner that Rudyard Kipling did when he wrote the original story:

What I love about the screen adaptation by Steve and Callie Kloves is it’s very truthful to the original book; it doesn’t shy away from its darkness. The jungle is a Garden of Eden and a wonderful place for Mowgli to grow up in, but also is a place of fear and a place of threat.

Hell, if an intelligent tiger was hunting me, I’d crap enough bricks to build an entire mansion. The Warner Bros picture is taking the Dark Knight approach, and making a grittier film with more realistic animal behaviour. This is in comparison to the  upcoming Disney flick that Jon “Iron Man” Favreau will direct. Which will most likely be family friendly fun. And don’t forget the inevitable third party CGI version, which will feature cutting edge 1990s animation techniques as it rakes in a quick buck.

I’m looking forward to seeing Serkis get a shot at the big screen, instead of running around covered in motion-capture balls. In the past, he’s directed a video game, Enslaed: Journey To The West, which has shown off his skill. Plus this is one of the few films that I would like to see a darker version of.

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Last Updated: March 31, 2014

Darryn Bonthuys

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