In the race to get The Jungle Book to the screen, Disney has taken the lead, with Idris Elba in final negotiations to voice star as the tiger Shere Khan in Jon Favreau‘s take on Rudyard Kipling‘s classic tale, The Hollywood Reporter has confirmed.
The movie is being made as a live-action/computer-generated hybrid, with most of the animals being CG creations and voiced by actors. The studio is also on the hunt for an actor of mixed race to play the part of Mowgli, the “man cub” orphaned boy who is then raised by various jungle animals.
Elba’s character is the life-long enemy of the boy. George Sanders voiced Shere Khan in Disney’s 1967 animated classic.
Elba is coming off rave reviews for his portrayal of Nelson Mandela in Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom.
Warner Bros. is still moving ahead with its version, with Ron Howard in talks to direct the project after Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu (Babel) fell off.