|“||I wanna be a man, Man-Cub! And stroll right into town. And be just like the other men; I'm tired of monkeying around!||„|
|~ King Louie to Mowgli.|
King Louie is a character in the 1967 film The Jungle Book, it's prequel series Jungle Cubs and the films spin-off series TaleSpin. He is an orangutan who wishes to become a man. He is voiced by the late Louis Prima in the film, Jason Marsden and Cree Summer in Jungle Cubs and currently Jim Cummings.
The Jungle Book
After hearing that a man cub named Mowgli is in the jungle, Louie sends his monkeys to bring him to his palace made out of ruins which they succeed. After Mowgli is brought to him, Louie makes a deal with him saying that he will help him stay in the jungle if Mowgli does something for him in return which the boy agrees to. Louie then starts to sing I Wanna Be Like You where he tells Mowgli that he wants to be a man and wants to know how to make Red Flower (Animal talk for Fire) but due to not being raised by other humans Mowgli does not know how to make it and when he says this to Louie, the orang-utan thinks he's just kidding. Just then Baloo and Bagheera arrive to save Mowgli, so Baloo dresses up as a female orang-utan to distract Louie and the monkeys but his disguise falls apart and a fight breaks out and the palace begins to fall apart but luckily Mowgli, Baloo and Bagheera manage to escape. Louie is not seen again in the film.
The Jungle Book 2
Louie doesn't appear in this film as according to Baloo he is "splitsville" instead a shadow puppet of him appears at the start of the film. Louie's palace appears where Baloo takes Mowgli to party with the other animals and it is shown that the monkeys still live there and are now friendly to Baloo.
Louie appears as a supporting character in this series where unlike the first film he is on good terms with Baloo and is his best friend. Also unlike the film Louie acts more like a human as he is seen wearing clothes and owns and works in a bar.
Louie appears as a main character in the prequel series to the film where he like the other animal characters is shown as a child. He is once again seen as Baloo's best friend and is shown to have also been friends with Shere Khan and Kaa. He is also shown to have two younger cousins named Benny and Clyde.
House of Mouse
Louie makes a few cameo appearances in the series. He was meant to appear in the episode King Larry Swings In but was replaced by his twin brother Larry. This was because the widow of Louis Prima (who voiced Louie in the film) sued Disney for unauthorised use of her late husband's voice.
- Although having a kind-of antagonistic role in the original film, he is far more villainous and is actually evil in the 2016 remake.
- Despite being male, Louie lacks flanges on his face, which adult male orangutans have in real life. This could be a mistake or perhaps Louie is meant to be a young adult male.