Prolific actress and singer Selena Gomez has joined the star-studded voice cast of the upcoming kids' movie The Voyage of Doctor Dolittle.
Dr. Downey Dolittle
Gomez will voice one of the animals in the upcoming Universal feature, the voice cast for which is already star-studded. Aside from Gomez, Tom Holland, Emma Thomspon, and Ralph Fiennes are all slated to voice critters.
This film isn't Gomez's first foray into the world of voice acting, as she also appears in the third installment of the super-popular Hotel Transylvania series, which will be released this coming July. The singer and actress has a lot on her plate, following her executive producer duties on Netflix's teen suicide series 13 Reasons Why.
Robert Downey Jr. stars as the titular character, in the role most recently played by Eddie Murphy, a physician with the uncanny ability to communicate with animals. Downey Jr. will play one of the live-action roles in the movie alongside Michael Sheen as Mudfly and Antonio Banderas as pirate Rassouli.
Battle For The Voyage
The Voyage Of Doctor Dolittle is scheduled for an April 12, 2019 release. The film, which begins production later this month on location in London, is from Oscar-winning Traffic writer-director Stephen Gaghan. Gaghan also penned the script, with the story based on Hugh Lofting's 1920s children's books, wherein a Victorian-era doctor treats animals instead of humans because he finds them easier to understand. Tom Shepherd scripted an earlier draft.
Universal beat out several rival studios in their bid to acquire the movie last year, with Downey already attached to the project. The Voyage of Doctor Dolittle may even launch a brand-new franchise for the star who's already headed two as Sherlock Holmes and Iron Man, as part of Marvel's world-conquering Cinematic Universe.
Dolittle's nemesis, Banderas, stars as Picasso in the latest season of the National Geographic series Genius. He also appears in Dan Fogelman's Life Itself, which sold for a whopping $10 million in a U.S. rights deal to Amazon Studios. The said flick also stars Oscar Isaac, Olivia Wilde, and Annette Bening.
Doctor Doolittle was initially portrayed by Rex Harrison in the titular, Oscar-winning 1967 musical. Eddie Murphy took over the role in the 1998 film of the same name, along with its 2001 sequel. The two movies grossed a combined more than $470 million worldwide. Universal is no doubt hoping to replicate their success with The Voyage of Doctor Dolittle when the film is released next year.