If there was ever a time for a movie to lift our spirits, it really would be six-months deep into a pandemic that’s forced us all to become best friends with our couches. For those of us who have kids, finding something that’ll entertain the whole family is another challenge altogether.
So, let's talk about The One and Only Ivan. With cinemas closing globally, The One and Only Ivan was meant to be one of the biggest cinematic releases of the year, but lucky for us, it's heading straight to our lounge rooms via Disney+ on August 21.
In the same vein as Disney's The Lion King and The Jungle Book, The One and Only Ivan is a mix of live-action and lifelike CGI, all in service of a timeless story everyone can take something away from.
The One and Only Ivan tells the story of a silverback gorilla named Ivan who lives in captivity in a shopping mall circus, and is on a mission to escape back to the wild. The most interesting part? It's based on a true story.
Here are some facts you need to know.
1. It's based on the true story of Ivan, one of the oldest gorillas to live in captivity in the US.
The One and Only Ivan is an adaption of a book of the same name by award-winning young adult fiction author Katherine Applegate. After reading a New York Times piece, Applegate was inspired to write about the real-life Ivan, who was born in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in 1962, and captured from the wild to live with humans in the US. When he grew too big for the house, Ivan was moved to a shopping mall in Washington, USA.
It was here that Ivan lived alone, behind glass, in a concrete cell for 27 years, where he reportedly ate hamburgers and smoked cigarettes. Eventually, times and attitudes changed and animal activists campaigned for his release.