The BBC has joined forces with French film studio Pathe to co-produce a $50m (£24.8m) movie based on Rudyard Kipling's The Jungle Book. The film will be shot as live action and CGI techniques will be used to appear to make the animals in the story talk. Director is to be BBC natural history filmmaker John Downer, who filmed the Emmy-nominated drama documentary Pride. Michelle Fox will produce for John Downer Productions.
Shooting is expected to begin in September and is expected to take two years.
Live sequences will all be shot in India, but Indian animal protection law forbids filming using live creatures in movies, so footage of trained animals will be filmed in the UK using blue screen techniques and "exported" in post production to appear against the genuine jungle sets photographed for backgrounds during shooting in India.
Director John Downer told the BBC: "My ambition is to use pioneering digital and wildlife filming techniques to portray one of the greatest stories of all time just as the author intended - with real live talking animals inhabiting the jungle world of Kipling's India. The script is full of thrills and humour but it also reminds us of our place in nature and our duty to protect the wild places of the world," he added.