Danny Devito reveals what happened when he gave his son a snake for his birthday - let's just say he got more than he bargained for!

This week Disney released another blockbuster movie onto their newly launched streaming platform Disney+, an adaptation of the award-winning children's book, The One and Only Ivan.

The story follows Ivan, a 400-pound silverback gorilla, who shares a habitat in a shopping mall with an array of animals. Ivan has few memories of the jungle where he was born, but when a baby elephant named Ruby arrives, it touches something within him. He begins to question his life, where he comes from and where he ultimately wants to be. 

The film boasts a voice cast that would almost certainly run out of space on any promotional poster with Sam Rockwell as the voice of Ivan, Angelina Jolie taking on Stella the elephant, Danny DeVito as Ivan's sidekick Bob the dog, Helen Mirren as Snickers the poodle, disco and funk superstar Chaka Khan as Henrietta the chicken and Bryan Cranston leading the circus as Mack. 

Speaking to RTÉ's Stephen Byrne DeVito said that the film is something he’s immensely proud of: 'We’ve been working on it for a couple of years, it's really a great film to have families get together. It's a heartfelt story. The artistry is amazing, with the animation and the CGI." 

DeVito's character Bob the stray dog provides the comic relief for the audience and man’s best friend becomes gorilla’s best friend as he helps Ivan lead a mission to break free from the circus. Talking about his own experience with animals DeVito opened up about a special dog named Pepper. "She was one of those captivating animals that everybody loved." 

DeVito has worn many hats in his career from his starring roles in Batman Returns and Twins to producing Erin Brockovich and writing and directing films like Matilda, but we never pegged him as a snake breeder.

Talking about the time his family purchased a serpent and got more than they bargained for he said: "We got a snake for my sons birthday one year. All of a sudden we noticed in the terrarium these white objects and we called the guy who brought us the snake and he said the snake must be very happy here because these are eggs! We had eight snakes! Eight snakes were born in our house!"

The One and Only Ivan is currently available to stream on Disney+.

Stephen Byrne