EXCLUSIVE: Steve Kloves is making a deal to write, direct and produce The Jungle Book at Warner Bros. The film is a live action of the Rudyard Kipling classic about an orphaned boy raised by wolves and other animals, which try to protect him from the ferocious tiger Shere-Khan. The deal keeps Kloves in the Warner Bros fold, where he has been the backbone of the Harry Potter series, and most recently scripted Akira.
EXCLUSIVE: The twists and turns on the Warner Bros adaptation of anime artist Katsuhiro Otomo’s graphic novel Akira continue. Director Albert Hughes is exiting the movie, I’m told. Insiders say that it is an amicable creative differences parting of the ways. Warner Bros will try to put him on another movie right away (Hughes and his brother Allen directed the hit The Book of Eli, and WB topper Jeff Robinov is their former agent and is very close with them). Hughes is coming to Hollywood next week to take meetings with his WME reps and look at scripts, hoping to find his next movie at Warner Bros.
As for Akira, the intention of the studio is to keep the picture on a fast track, which means they will find a director quickly. The studio has been wrestling with the approach on the film for the past year.