Robert Downey Jr. is set to take on the title role in the forthcoming film Voyage of Doctor Dolittle. If you’re not familiar with the charmed doctor, he’s a veterinarian who has the ability to understand and speak to animals, created by children’s book author Hugh Lofting in the 1920s.
So, who else will be joining the Iron Man star?
While Downey Jr. will be on-screen in a live-action role, it’s been confirmed Emma Thompson (Beauty and the Beast), Ralph Fiennes (Holmes and Watson) and Tom Holland (Spider-Man: Homecoming) will lend their voices to some of the doctor’s critter friends, reports Deadline.
And the casting news doesn’t stop there. Antonia Banderas (Knight of Cups) will also take on a live-action role as a pirate named Rassouli, while Michael Sheen (Good Omens) is “in talks” to take on a live-action role — a character named Mudfly.
Originally the script was written by Thomas Shepherd (Agatha Christie), and has been rewritten by Stephen Gaghan (Traffic), who’s also set to direct.
This isn’t the first time we’ve seen Dolittle up on the big screen. Most famously, Rex Harrison (My Fair Lady) brought the character to life in 1967:
And Eddie Murphy (Shrek) starred as the chatty doctor in the 1998 reboot and its sequel in 2001:
Production will begin later this month in London, but the film won’t premiere until April next year.
In the meantime, we can look for Downey Jr. as Iron Man in 2018’s Avengers: Infinity War (May 8). He’ll be joined by Anglo regulars Benedict Cumberbatch as Dr. Strange, Tom Hiddeston as Loki, Karen Gillan as Nebula, and, well, pretty much the whole Marvel lot is in this one. You can also look out for Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Chris Hemsworth, Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana and Tom Holland.
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