andy serkis jungle book

Andy Serkis is going to go from playing CG animals to directing them. The acclaimed mo-cap actor is set to helm Warner Bros.’ live-action adaptation of The Jungle Book, based on Rudyard Kipling‘s classic tales about an orphan boy raised in the jungle.

Although Serkis has served as a second unit director on Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit trilogy, The Jungle Book marks his feature directorial debut. Get all the details after the jump.

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Alice in Wonderland

Briefly: Wow, that was fast. Mere weeks after first hearing about Jon Favreau‘s live-action 3D remake of The Jungle Book, Disney has given the film a release date. It’ll open October 9, 2015, making it the first film to claim a date in that month. But that’s not all. Disney also announced the follow up to the billion dollar hit Alice in Wonderland will come out a year later. Alice in Wonderland 2, starring Johnny Depp and Mia Wasikowska, opens May 27, 2016. James Bobin (The Muppets) will direct.

Also, Ron Howard‘s sea-bound film, Heart of the Sea starring Chris Hemsworth, will be released March 13, 2015. [ERC]

Gore Verbinski To Produce Futuristic Jungle Book Movie

Chernin Entertainment is close to a deal to acquire a pitch from screenwriters Matt Sazama and Burk Sharpless. Deadline is reporting that the deal is in mid to high six figures, and that Pirates/Rango helmer Gore Verbinski would produce. The yet to be titled project is being described as a futuristic Jungle Book, whatever that means. Sarama and Sharpless are probably best known for developing board game turned movie adaptations of Clue and Missile Command, as well as the announced Flash Gordon redo and Dracula Year Zero (which I’ve heard great things about). Walt Disney Pictures, who has released a bunch of Jungle Book movies, was also bidding on the property.

Note: The illustration above, by Phil Longson, has nothing to do with this project. But I thought the imagery of a boy and his giant robot to be cool.

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