When Jon Favreau’s live action adaptation of Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book comes out next month, there will be much that is new. The film is on a scale much larger than previous iterations, and features a high profile cast – including Scarlett Johansson, Bill Murray, Ben Kingsley. For the Hindi dubbed version, Priyanka Chopra, Irrfan Khan and Nana Petakar are among those who’ve been roped in. Neel Sethi, 10, plays Mowgli.
But there’s one thing that will take viewers here back to the animated TV show they were used to seeing on their TV screens back in the ’90s — the theme song with the lyrics, “Jungle jungle baat chali hai, pata chala hai…chaddi pehen ke phool khila hai, phool khila hai”.
A new version of the track has been recorded by Gulzar and Vishal Bhardwaj in the run-up to the release of The Jungle Book, with several child artistes. The video for the track sees the children in the recording studio along with Gulzar and Bhardwaj, interspersed with scenes from the film. We see Mowgli interact with much loved characters like Bagheera, Baloo and of course, Sher Khan.
The film’s team has not confirmed if the song will be part of the dubbed version that is released in India, or if the track was merely recorded to use as promotional material.