Disney has showcased the impressive voice cast of “The Jungle Book” in a series of portraits depicting the actors with their CG animal counterparts.
The photos show Idris Elba with Shere Khan, Giancarlo Esposito with the wolf Akela, Ben Kingsley with the panther Bagheera, Scarlett Johansson and the python Kaa, Lupita Nyong’o with the wolf Raksha, and Christopher Walken the orangutan King Louie. Bill Murray, who voices the bear Baloo, isn’t depicted.
Based on Rudyard Kipling’s timeless stories, director Jon Favreau’s reimagining of Disney’s 1967 animated classic centers on Mowgli (newcomer Neel Sethi), a man-cub who’s been raised by a family of wolves. However, he soon finds he’s no longer welcome in the jungle when Shere Khan, who bears the scars of Man, promises to eliminate what he views as a threat.
Urged to abandon the only home he’s ever known, Mowgli begins a journey of self-discovery, guided by panther-turned-stern mentor Bagheera, and the free-spirited bear Baloo. Along the way, Mowgli encounters jungle creatures who don’t exactly have his best interests at heart, including Kaa, a python whose seductive voice and gaze hypnotizes the man-cub, and the smooth-talking King Louie, who tries to coerce Mowgli into giving up the secret to the elusive and deadly red flower: fire.
“The Jungle Book” opens April 15.