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In the pact announced Monday, the two films will premiere across Turner’s cable network portfolio, including TBS, TNT and Cartoon Network, roughly two years after their scheduled theatrical release dates. That means Cinderella (out March 13, 2015), which stars Cate Blanchett, will hit Turner networks in the middle of 2017. The Jungle Book (out Oct. 9, 2015), which is directed by Jon Favreau, will premiere in early 2018.
“We are confident Disney’s new live-action versions of Cinderella and The Jungle Book will appeal to a wide range of demographics and will enjoy extremely successful runs across our various branded networks,” said Deborah K. Bradley, senior vp and head of program acquisitions, content strategy and licensing for Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. “These movies are the kind of tentpole releases that will fit perfectly with Turner’s ever-growing stable of blockbuster titles.”
Turner has been aggressive with its licensing agreements for blockbuster films and upcoming properties, as this deal comes one month after TNT acquired TV premiere rights to five upcoming Marvel titles, including the anticipated Avengers: Age of Ultron and Captain America 3.
Directed by Kenneth Branagh, Cinderella is a live-action update of Disney’s 1950 animated classic. Lily James, Richard Madden and Helena Bonham Carter also star. The live-action/CG-animated The Jungle Book, inspired by the animated classic, includes an all-star voice cast led by Bill Murray, Ben Kingsley, Christopher Walken, Lupita Nyong’o, Idris Elba, and Scarlett Johansson. Giancarlo Esposito and newcomer Neel Sethi also star.
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