When Iron Man died in Avengers: Endgame, Robert Downey Jr. was now free to take on whatever projects he wanted. And the one he’s picked is…well… it’s certainly an interesting one. Watch the trailer for yourself:
Robert Downey Jr. plays John Dolittle, an eccentric veterinarian who can speak with the animals, who must leave his haven for some reason. It is based off the books by Hugh Lofting and will be the second major film adaptation. The film is directed and written by Stephen Gaghan, who is best known for Syriana and Gold.
If you think the inclusion of Downey Jr. is throwing a lot of star power, then you haven’t seen the rest of the list. Besides Antonio Banderas, Michael Sheen and Jim Broadbent in live-action roles, there is a whole host of star-voiced animals. John Cena, Tom Holland, Octavia Spencer, Carmen Ejogo, Marion Cotillard, Selena Gomez, Ralph Fiennes, Rami Malek, Emma Thompson and Kumail Nanjiani all play a part. It is a shame we don’t really get to hear any of them talk in the trailer, which focuses on Downey’s Dolittle.
This isn’t the first adaptation of these books, with the last being a total disaster. If you’ve never heard of the original 1967 film, Dr. Dolittle was one of the most expensive movie musicals of the era starring Rex Harrison, which all but destroyed the genre when it bombed at the box office as well as the format of the roadshow. It is interesting that they are trying again with a property that failed so spectacularly. That might be why we’re only getting a trailer with only three months left til the premiere and with very little chatter around it. Still, we’ll have to see if they will be able to pull it off.
Dolittle premieres in theaters on January 17, 2020.