Trivia / The Jungle Book

Disney's 2016 live-action adaptation has it's own trivia page.

Trivia from The Jungle Book (1967 Animated Adaptation):

  • Actor Allusion: King Louie is played by Louis Prima, whose nickname was "The King of the Swing". In King Louie's song, "I Wan'na Be Like You (The Monkey Song)", he refers to himself as the "King of the Swingers".
    • It gets better. He was notorious for many songs extolling his preference for bigger women such as "The Bigger The Figure" (featured in Igor). Now, knowing that, observe his character's reaction to Baloo's disguise.
    • There's another one in the sequel. If you pay very close attention during the scenes with the vultures, you'll hear Jess Harnell doing his Ringo Starr impression. Again.
    • The four buzzards are patterned after the Beatles themselves.
  • Author Existence Failure: Walt Disney passed away towards the last leg of the film's production, one day after cast member and frequent Disney voice actress Verna Felton passed away; this is the final film to involve both of them to an extended degree.
  • Celebrity Voice Actor: The Hebrew dub has the vultures done by an Israeli pop band. Of course, the original English version isn't exactly innocent either.
  • Crossdressing Voices: Averted in both the original English version and many other dubs with Mowgli, but played straight in the Mexican Spanish dub of the first film, albeit this is averted as well in the sequel.
  • Cut Song: A ton of cut songs are found on the DVD. Here is one of them.
  • The Danza: Louis Prima as King Louie.
  • Disowned Adaptation: Per word of Chuck Jones in his book Chuck Jones Conversations (who did his own animated adaptations of Kipling's stories), Kipling's daughter hated the Disney movie for being an In-Name-Only adaptation of her father's work.
    "Before we started our film, I discovered that Kipling's daughter was still alive and called her. In an elegant, British Dowager-like voice, she confirmed my pronunciation (of Mowgli's name) and added "and, I hate Walter Disney." It was the only time I ever heard anybody call him Walter. In her lifetime, she said nobody ever pronounced anything but Mauwgli."
  • End of an Era: This is the final Disney animated film to fully involve Walt Disney himself (along with actress Verna Felton, who died alongside him), and at one point was intended to be the Grand Finale to the Disney Animated Canon altogether before Walt was convinced to greenlight The Aristocats prior to his death.
  • Half-Remembered Homage: Walt Disney told his entire staff not to read the original Kipling stories at all. The film was said to be "inspired by" rather than "based on" Kipling's works.
  • Older Than They Think: The film's main theme "Jungle Beat" was originally written for the 1964 New York World's Fair under the title "Serengeti Serenade".
  • The Other Darrin: For rather obvious reasons, none of the original voice-actors reprise their roles in the sequel. It's most obvious with Shanti, who sounds nothing like she did in the first movie, but it's also notable with Mowgli and Baloo. The other voice actors imitate the original actors with various levels of success.
  • Recycled Script: The sequence where Baloo and the monkeys kept taking Mowgli away from each other is a shot-for-shot remake of a similar sequence from The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad.
    • The sequel is frequently criticized for its similar plot to the original film.
  • Screwed by the Lawyers: Disney ended up limiting the appearances of King Louie when the widow and family of Louis Prima, the voice of Louie in the original film, sued them over the stunning similarities of Prima's voice when Jim Cummings voiced Louie in TaleSpin. This resulted in Disney writing him out of the sequel, replacing him with an Expy named King Larry in House of Mouse, and have any appearance of him reduced to complete silence until the remake in 2016.
  • What Could Have Been: The Vultures were originally planned to be voiced by The Beatles and sing a rock song, but the band would end up passing on the offer due to busy scheduling (As well as John Lennon refusing to sing a barbershop quartet number). The Beatles-inspired character designs for the Vultures were kept in the finished film, however.
    • It was more than that: Walt Disney realized a 60s rock song would date the film too much, and had it changed to a doo-wop song instead. Plus, John Lennon strongly disliked Disney.
    • Before that, the film was a closer and much darker adaptation of the book.
    • According to Amy Mebberson, one of the animators for Jungle Book 2, there were ideas for a third Jungle Book. One idea was about Baloo and Shere Khan getting captured by hunters and sent a Russian circus, Mowgli and Shanti going after them to save Baloo, and Shere Khan possibly getting over his desire to kill Mowgli through the course of the film.
    • Long before The Jungle Book 2, development for a sequel had already been planned in 1968. It was initially pitched as a record story (entitled More Jungle Book) however it was rejected as an animation out of respect for Walt's dislike of sequels. The record featured original tunes provided by Phil Harris and Louis Prima (who reprised their roles as Baloo and Louie respectively), a snippet of which can be found here.
    • The actual sequel itself went through several script ideas, one of which involved Baloo trying to save a female bear from some poachers. One contributor mocked the fact that, after all their rewrites, the final was essentially just a rehash of the original.
    • According to an issue of Disney Adventures, The Jungle Book 2 originally had a pie fight scene that was cut from the final film.
    • Louis Armstrong was originally considered for the voice of King Louie, but the producers decided against it to avoid the potential controversy of casting a black man to voice an ape.
    • Andreas Deja on his blog posted a long list of actors considered for the role of Shere Khan, including (but not limited to) Don Adams, John Carradine, Hans Conried, Boris Karloff, Vincent Price, Basil Rathbone, Don Rickles, and Larry Storch.

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Trivia from The Jungle Book (1994 live-action movie):