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The Lion King Movie
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Jon Favreau|
- Jon Favreau
- Jeffrey Silver
- Karen Gilchrist
|Screenplay by||Jeff Nathanson|
|Based on||Disney’s The Lion King
by Irene Mecchi
- Donald Glover
- Seth Rogen
- Chiwetel Ejiofor
- Alfre Woodard
- Billy Eichner
- John Kani
- John Oliver
- Beyoncé Knowles-Carter
- James Earl Jones
|Music by||Hans Zimmer|
- Walt Disney Pictures
- Fairview Entertainment
|Distributed by||Walt Disney Studios
- July 9, 2019 (Hollywood)
- July 19, 2019 (United States)
|Box office||$1.656 billion|
The Lion King Movie Castings
Donald Glover as Simba:
A lion who is the crown prince of the Pride Lands. Glover said that the film will focus more on Simba’s time growing up than the original film did, stating that “[Favreau] was very keen in making sure we saw [Simba’s] transition from boy to man and how hard that can be when there’s been a deep trauma”.
JD McCrary as young Simba.
Seth Rogen as Pumbaa:
A slow-witted common warthog who befriends and adopts a young Simba after he runs away from home. Rogen said, “[a]s an actor, I […] don’t think I’m right for every role — there are a lot of roles I don’t think I’m right for even in movies I’m making — but Pumbaa was one I knew I could do well”. Favreau encouraged Rogen and Timon’s Billy Eichner, who did their voice recordings together, to improvise a lot.
Chiwetel Ejiofor as Scar:
The treacherous brother of Mufasa, the brother-in-law of Sarabi, and the uncle of Simba who seeks to take the mantle of king of the Pride Lands. Ejiofor described Scar as more “psychologically possessed” and “brutalized” than in the original film. Ejiofor said that “especially with Scar, whether it’s a vocal quality that allows for a certain confidence or a certain aggression, to always know that at the end of it you’re playing somebody who has the capacity to turn everything on its head in a split second with outrageous acts of violence – that can completely change the temperature of a scene”. Ejiofor also said that “[Scar and Mufasa’s] relationship is completely destroyed and brutalized by Scar’s way of thinking. He’s possessed with this disease of his own ego and his own want”. Favreau said of casting Ejiofor, “[He] is just a fantastic actor, who brings us a bit of the mid-Atlantic cadence and a new take on the character. He brings that feeling of a Shakespearean villain to bear because of his background as an actor. It’s wonderful when you have somebody as experienced and seasoned as Chiwetel; he just breathes such wonderful life into this character.” When Jeremy Irons was interviewed on Larry King Now on November 30, 2016, he expressed interest in reprising the role.
Alfre Woodard as Sarabi:
The Queen of the Pride Lands, Mufasa’s wife, and Simba’s mother.
Billy Eichner as Timon:
A wise-cracking meerkat who befriends and adopts a young Simba after he runs away from home. Eichner described Timon as “physically the smallest character, but he has one of the bigger personalities, and I love the combination of those two things. I kind of played into Timon, as I’ve done with many characters of mine, [the notion that] he might be small in stature but he has a huge sense of entitlement, which is always funny to play,” and that “when Timon speaks and when he’s quote-unquote ‘being funny,’ he’s very loud and boisterous, but [his] singing allows this vulnerable side, a slightly softer side, especially in ‘Can You Feel the Love Tonight’ and other moments.” Eichner also talked about having what some may consider a gay sensibility” that he brought to the table when he voiced Timon.
John Kani as Rafiki:
A wise mandrill who serves as the shaman of the Pride Lands, and a close friend of Mufasa’s. Likening his role to that of a grandfather, Kani said, “Rafiki reminds all of us of that special wise relative. His wisdom, humor and his loyalty to the Mufasa dynasty is what warms our hearts towards him. [He’s] always happy and wisecracking jokes as lessons of life and survival.
John Oliver as Zazu:
A red-billed hornbill who is the majordomo to the King of the Pride Lands. Speaking of his role, Oliver said, “I think Zazu is basically a bird who likes structure. He just wants things to be as they should be. I think there are British echoes there because we tend to favor structure in lieu of having an emotional reaction to anything.”[
Beyoncé Knowles-Carter as Nala:
Simba’s childhood best friend and future love interest. According to Favreau, the character has a bigger role than in the original film. Favreau felt that “part of [Beyoncé joining the film] is that she’s got young kids, part of it is that it’s a story that feels good for this phase of her life and her career, and she really likes the original very much. And then, of course, there are these wonderful musical numbers that she can be involved with, and my God… she really lives up to her reputation as far as the beauty of her voice and talent”.[hahadi Wright Joseph as young Nala. Joseph reprises her role from the Broadway production. Joseph chose to work on the film because “Nala inspires little girls […] She’s a great role model”.
James Earl Jones as Mufasa:
The King of the Pride Lands, Sarabi’s husband and the father of Simba. Jones reprises his role from the original 1994 animated film. According to Favreau, Jones’ lines remain mostly the same from the original film. Ejiofor said that “the comfort of [Jones reprising his role] is going to be very rewarding in taking [the audience] on this journey again. It’s a once-in-a-generation vocal quality”. Favreau saw Jones’ return as “carrying the legacy across” the original film and the remake, and felt that his voice’s change in tonality compared to the original film “served the role well because he sounds like a king who’s ruled for a long time”.
Florence Kasumba, Keegan-Michael Key, and Eric Andre voice Shenzi, Kamari, and Azizi: Three spotted hyenas who are Scar’s henchmen. While Shenzi is a character that was featured in the original 1994 animated film, Kamari and Azizi are the respective names of new characters loosely based on Banzai and Ed from the original film. The hyenas’ characterizations were heavily altered from the original film’s, as Favreau felt that they “had to change a lot” to fit the remake’s realistic style, stating that “[a] lot of the stuff around them [in the original film] was very stylised”. Kasumba elaborated, declaring that “Those hyenas were funny. These hyenas are dangerous.
Additionally, Penny Johnson Jerald voices Sarafina, Nala’s mother. Amy Sedaris, Chance the Rapper, Josh McCrary, and Phil LaMarr voice a guinea fowl, a bush baby, an elephant shrew, and a topi (miscredited as an impala), respectively, Timon and Pumbaa’s neighbors in the oasis. J. Lee voices a hyena that chases after Timon and Pumbaa.Production
On September 28, 2016, Walt Disney Pictures confirmed that Jon Favreau would be directing a remake of the 1994 animated film The Lion King, which would feature the songs from the 1994 film, following a string of recent box office successes of Disney live-action remake films such as Maleficent, Cinderella, Favreau’s The Jungle Book and Beauty and the Beast, with the latter three also earning critical praise. On October 13, 2016, it was reported that Disney had hired Jeff Nathanson to write the screenplay for the remake.In November, talking with ComingSoon.net, Favreau said the virtual cinematography technology he used in The Jungle Book would be used to a greater degree in The Lion King. Although the media reported The Lion King to be a live-action film, it actually utilizes photorealistic computer-generated animation. Disney also did not describe it as live-action, only stating it would follow the “technologically groundbreaking” approach of The Jungle Book. While the film acts as a remake of the 1994 animated film, Favreau was inspired by the Broadway adaptation of the film for certain aspects of the remake’s plot, particularly Nala and Sarabi’s roles. Favreau also aimed to develop his own take on the original film’s story with what he said was “the spectacle of a BBC wildlife documentary”.This serves as the final credit for film editor Mark Livolsi, who died on September 2018.] The film is dedicated to him.Casting
In mid-February 2017, Donald Glover was cast as Simba, with James Earl Jones reprising his role as Mufasa from the 1994 film. In April 2017, Billy Eichner and Seth Rogen were cast to play Timon and Pumbaa respectively. In July 2017, John Oliver was cast as Zazu. In August 2017, Alfre Woodard and John Kani were announced to play Sarabi and Rafiki, respectively.Earlier in March 2017, it was announced that Beyoncé Knowles-Carter was Favreau’s top choice for the role of Nala and that the director and studio would be willing to do whatever it took to accommodate her busy schedule. Later on November 1, 2017, her role was confirmed in an official announcement, which also confirmed that Chiwetel Ejiofor would play the role of Scar, and announced that Eric Andre, Florence Kasumba, and Keegan-Michael Key would be the voices of Azizi, Shenzi and Kamari while JD McCrary and Shahadi Wright Joseph would be the voices of young Simba and young Nala, respectively. In November 2018, Amy Sedaris was announced as having been cast in a role created for the film.Visual effects
The Moving Picture Company, the lead vendor on The Jungle Book, provided the visual effects, which were supervised by Robert Legato, Elliot Newman and Adam Valdez. The film uses “virtual-reality tools,” according to Visual Effects Supervisor Rob Legato. Virtual Production Supervisor Girish Balakrishnan said on his professional website that the filmmakers used motion capture and VR/AR technologies. MPC was in charge of all the VFX shots for this film. There are 1490 VFX shots. The animals were designed from art and photo references. From that, the characters were built; all the rigging, shapes, textures, and furs were rendered step-by-step for further improvement. After that, the animation of the animals was crafted by hand, based on the reference clips. The movements, muscles, eyes, facial expressions, and the way the animals breathe was animated for more than 30 species. The environment was created entirely in CGI from reference materials such as high-definition photos of the African landscape. All the FX simulations—such as water, dirt and fire—were created by combining VR technology with cameras shots so that scenes could be digitally built within in a VR-simulated environment. New software developed for the movie made it possible to create scenes with the shaky-cam look of a handheld camera. Sean Bailey, Disney’s President of Production, said of the film’s visual effects, “It’s a new form of filmmaking. Historical definitions don’t work. It uses some techniques that would traditionally be called animation, and other techniques that would traditionally be called live action. It is an evolution of the technology Jon [Favreau] used in Jungle Book”.Rather than animators do everything, the team also used artificial intelligence to allow virtual characters behave in ways that mimicked real animals. There is only one real and non-animated shot in the film, consisting of the sunrise in the opening sceneMusic
Main article: The Lion King (2019 soundtrack)
Hans Zimmer, who composed the 1994 animated version, would return to compose the score for the remake with Pharrell Williams as a collaborator. Elton John also returned to rework his musical compositions from the original film before his retirement, with Knowles-Carter assisting John in the reworking of the soundtrack. John, the original film’s lyricist, Tim Rice, and Beyoncé were also slated in 2018 to create a new song for the film. However, the collaboration between Beyoncé and John did not pan out as the unreleased song was not added to the official soundtrack. John and Rice also wrote a new song for the film’s end credits, titled “Never Too Late” and performed by John.“Spirit”, performed by Knowles-Carter and written by herself, Ilya Salmanzadeh, and Labrinth, was released on July 9, 2019, as the lead single from the soundtrack.The film also features all the songs from the original film, a cover of The Tokens’ “The Lion Sleeps Tonight”, and the song “He Lives in You” from Rhythm of the Pride Lands and the Broadway production. The soundtrack, featuring Zimmer’s score and John and Rice’s songs, was released digitally on July 11, 2019, and physically on July 19, 2019.Main article: The Lion King: The Gift
Knowles-Carter also produced and curated an album titled The Lion King: The Gift, which features “Spirit”, as well as songs inspired by the film. The album was released on July 19, 2019.[penci_ads id=”penci_ads_2″]
The Lion King Movie Box-Office
The Lion King Movie Story
In the Pride Lands of Africa, a pride of lions rule over the animal kingdom from Pride Rock. King Mufasa’s and Queen Sarabi’s newborn son, Simba, is presented to the gathering animals by Rafiki the mandrill, the kingdom’s shaman and advisor. Mufasa shows Simba the Pride Lands and explains to him the responsibilities of kingship and the “circle of life”, which connects all living things. Mufasa’s younger brother, Scar, covets the throne and plots to eliminate Mufasa and Simba, so he may become king. He tricks Simba and his best friend Nala (to whom it is expected Simba will marry) into exploring a forbidden elephants’ graveyard, where they are attacked by spotted hyenas led by the ruthless Shenzi. Mufasa is alerted about the incident by his majordomo, the hornbill Zazu, and rescues the cubs. Though upset with Simba, Mufasa forgives him and explains that the great kings of the past watch over them from the night sky, from which he will one day watch over Simba. Meanwhile, Scar visits the hyenas and manages to convince them to help him overthrow Mufasa in exchange for hunting rights in the Pride Lands.Scar sets a trap for his brother and nephew, luring Simba into a gorge and having the hyenas drive a large herd of wildebeest into a stampede that will trample him. He informs Mufasa of Simba’s peril, knowing that the king will rush to save his son. Mufasa saves Simba but ends up hanging perilously from the gorge’s edge. Scar refuses to help Mufasa, instead sending him falling to his death. He then convinces Simba that the tragedy was Simba’s own fault and advises him to leave the kingdom and never return. He orders the hyenas to kill the cub, but Simba escapes. Scar tells the pride that both Mufasa and Simba were killed in the stampede and steps forward as the new king, allowing Shenzi’s clan to live in the Pride Lands.[penci_ads id=”penci_ads_1″]
The Lion King Movie Trailer
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