The Jungle Book Shows Off Idris Elba's Straight-Up Terrifying Character

Growing up, we all have to learn about the bare (bear) necessities in life. No other story has become so iconic for hammering home that idea than the animated Disney classic, The Jungle Book. A new clip from Jon Favreu's upcoming live-action retelling of this tale has just hit the web, and provides us with a terrifying introduction to the film’s villain, Shere Kahn, voiced by none other than Idris Elba. Check out the clip below to see for yourself.

The above clip seems to take place fairly early in the film, with the film’s protagonist Mowgli living secretly among the pack of wolves who adopt and raise the orphaned boy. As all of the animals in the jungle convene at the watering hole, Idris Elba’s Shere Kahn notices a "strange odor," which he unmistakably identifies as that of a human. What follows is a standoff between the tiger and the wolves, as Shere Kahn explains that man is forbidden from their land. Elba just exudes dominance in this role, he’s basically Stringer Bell from The Wire in wild animal form.

Based off of what we have seen from the trailers, it seems likely that this showdown between the animals is what leads to Mowgli going on the run in the first place. Shere Kahn’s forced exile will eventually send the film’s young protagonist on a journey which will bring him into contact with numerous animals, such as the bear Baloo (Bill Murray), the giant snake Kaa (Scarlett Johansson), and the orangutan King Louie (Christopher Walken).

As much as Idris Elba wrote the book on how to be a menacing villain, the thing that we love the most about his take on Shere Kahn is the fact that he’s a villain he can empathize with. He doesn’t hate humans for no reason at all, he has suffered at the hands of men before, and in his own way he fears what Mowgli could become capable of if he stays in the jungle long enough to grow up.

If you haven yet to check out the clip above, do yourself a favor and watch it. You could be a longtime fan of The Jungle Book, or a complete novice the story, but it conveys just the right amount of menace and heart to appeal to just about anyone. We will bring you all of the latest and greatest news related to The Jungle Book as it becomes available to us.

The Jungle Book hits theaters on April 15. Stay tuned for more details.

Conner Schwerdtfeger

Originally from Connecticut, Conner grew up in San Diego and graduated from Chapman University in 2014. He now lives in Los Angeles working in and around the entertainment industry and can mostly be found binging horror movies and chugging coffee.