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Live-action 'Jungle Book' trailer: Less singing, more action

Growling big cats, fire, dramatic chase scenes and narrow escapes highlight a sensational trailer teasing a new take on "The Jungle Book."

This tiger is scary. Video screenshot by Amanda Kooser/CNET

Don't expect much singing from "Iron Man" director Jon Favreau's take on "The Jungle Book." Disney on Tuesday unveiled an official teaser trailer for the new film, due out in 2016, that melds live action with plenty of CGI effects.

The nearly two-minute trailer shows a shadowy jungle world full of intimidating creatures like a snarling tiger, a massive ape and a deceptively sweet-talking snake. There's lots of running and dramatic cuts that hint at a high level of action.

"The Jungle Book" was originally a set of Rudyard Kipling stories for children collected into a single volume and published in 1894. Most modern kids are more familiar with it as a 1967 Disney animated musical. It follows the adventures of Mowgli, a wild child raised by wolves who befriends a variety of jungle animals. The main villain is a tiger named Shere Khan.

The original stories are filled with tense moments involving floods, cobra attacks, carrion animals descending on corpses and tiger-skinning. It's a different feel from the cheery family-friendly sing-alongs of the Disney classic. It looks like Favreau may try to meld the two approaches.

The final scene in the trailer shows Baloo the bear whistling the song "Bear Necessities," a wink to the 1967 film. Bill Murray voices Baloo. The voice cast is full of big names, including Ben Kingsley, Lupita Nyong'o, Scarlett Johanssen, Idris Elba and Christopher Walken. Young actor Neel Sethi takes on the role of the feral child Mowgli.

If the teaser is indicative of the suspense levels for the film, some parents may want to think twice about taking young children to see it, as the trailer alone might induce some tiger-related nightmares. However, "Jungle Book" fans, whether they love the book or the musical, will get a guaranteed thrill.

(Via The Verge)