Jon Favreau on Disney’s MAGIC KINGDOM Movie and How THE JUNGLE BOOK Might Help It Get Made

One of the projects I’ve been most excited about from Jon Favreau is his Magic Kingdom movie. It’s been about six years since the project was announced, and in that time Favreau has made Cowboys & Aliens, Chef, and The Jungle Book. Magic Kingdom isn’t completely dead, but it’s not really in active development either. This is something Favreau hopes will change with the help of The Jungle Book.

Magic Kingdom is set in the Disneyland theme park and would feature the characters and attractions at the park coming to life and interacting with each other. When previously talking about the film and his inspiration behind it, Favreau said:

“Between the theme parks and the movies, the Disney iconography was probably the first set of archetypes that I was exposed to. Walt was able to expose me as a child to the full array of emotions, including fear and sorrow. Those movies and attractions haunted my dreams and made a deep impression on me as a child. When I first heard about the [‘Magic Kingdom’ film] project, I was on my way to visit Disneyland with my family. I took notes and had no problem filling a book with all the ideas that this concept offered, even on first blush. Since then, I was lucky enough to be given a tour of Imagineering by Tony Baxter, who knows just about everything there is to know about Disneyland. He pulled original concept art from the archives for me and exposed me to Walt’s original vision.”

Then during a recent interview with Collider, the director offered an update on the film, and explains how The Jungle Book might help it move forward:

“Hopefully now with this collaboration, if it works out well, we can explore what Magic Kingdom could be. Magic Kingdom is a story I’ve been developing. Michael Chabon wrote the draft about Disneyland coming to life, and all of the different lands and attractions all overlapping one another and creating a big adventure that a family gets caught up in. It’s something I feel very passionate about. Part of the reason I explored this technology I used on Jungle Book is because I was considering it for that film, and maybe it might be something we work together on.”

I have a feeling The Jungle Book is going to be a success and I think audiences are going to love it. If that is the case, then I don’t see why Disney wouldn’t want to jump on a film like Magic Kingdom. After seeing Jungle Book for myself, there’s no doubt in my mind that Favreau would bring the same level of talent, quality, heart, imagination, and emotion to a film like Magic Kingdom. This sounds like a movie he was destined to make. 

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