Ben Kingsley Joins Jon Favreau's 'The Jungle Book'

Ben Kingsley Joins Jon Favreau's 'The Jungle Book'

The Mandarin impersonator in 'Iron Man 3' is set to voice Mowgli's furry friend, the black panther Bagheera.

Jon Favreau's adaptation of "The Jungle Book" for Disney adds another big name to the cast ensemble. Ben Kingsley ("Iron Man 3", "Ender's Game") is confirmed to provide voice to Bagheera, the black panther who befriends Mowgli during the boy's time in the jungle.

The film is written by Justin Marks ("Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li"). Scarlett Johansson is in talks to voice the villainous python, Kaa. Lupita Nyong'o is expected to voice Rakcha, a mother wolf who adopts Mowgli. Idris Elba will voice the man-eating tiger, Shere Khan.

The Mouse House plans to release the movie on October 9, 2015. They are on a fast track to keep up with rival project developed by Warner Bros. Andy Serkis sits behind the lens for WB's "The Jungle Book (2016)", while "Harry Potter" scribe Steve Kloves serves as a producer and his daughter Callie Kloves writes the script. No cast has been announced.


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