Ron Howard in talks for Warner Bros.' 'Jungle Book' movie (Report)

By Daniel S Levine,

Ron Howard certainly enjoys working. The prolific director is reportedly in talks for Warner Bros.’ The Jungle Book movie, even though he also signed on for a project about a 1980s drug dealer for Universal earlier this month. He also has other projects that he’s been linked to.

The Hollywood Reporter first reported Friday afternoon that the Rush filmmaker is in talks to take over from Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu, who had to leave because of his schedule. The Babel director is wrapping up work on Birdman.

The Jungle Book will be another adaptation of Rudyard Kipling's iconic stories about Mowgli in the jungles of India. Unlike the Disney classic, it will be live action. The script is by Callie Kloves. Of course, Howard would also co-produce the project under his Imagine Entertainment banner.

Disney is also working on its own live action Jungle Book, which Jon Favreau has been linked to. Kipling’s work is in the public domain.

It will be interesting to see if Howard’s Jungle Book deal actually closes, since he already has a full plate. Earlier this month, Deadline reported that Universal reached a $1 million spec deal for Mena by Gary Spinelli that the studio wants Howard to direct. It’s about Barry Seal, a 1980s drug trafficker.

Howard is also currently working on Heart of the Sea, which will open in 2015 and stars Rush’s Chris Hemsworth. There have also been reports that he’s doing an adaptation of Stephen King’s The Dark Tower. That long-gestating project is actually still in the works, Howard told Empire last fall.

image courtesy of Universal/image.net; by Jaap Buitendijk

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