Warner Bros. has dated its live-action version of “Jungle Book: Origins” for Oct. 21, 2016 — a year and a week after Disney’s rival project opens.
Serkis will also produce with “Harry Potter” scribe Steve Kloves and with Jonathan Cavendish, Serkis’ partner at his London-based production company The Imaginarium. Callie Kloves wrote the adaptation of the Rudyard Kipling stories about a young boy raised by wolves.
Disney recently cast newcomer Neel Sethi as Mowgli in “The Jungle Book.”
Warner Bros. has not yet started casting for its “Jungle Book: Origins.” It is the first feature directing gig for Serkis — although the actor was a second unit director on Peter Jackson’s two “Hobbit” movies, including the barrel chase scene in “The Desolation of Smaug.”
Serkis has been a pioneer in performance capture roles as Gollum in “The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey” and “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy, as King Kong in Jackson’s “King Kong” and as Caesar in “Rise of the Planet of the Apes.”