Simba Roars Again for His Rightful Throne in Lion King Remake

Article by Oliver
Posted: July 08, 2019  

For the second time this year, Disney is out to entertain audiences with the new ‘Lion King’ live-action remake. The film journeys to the African savanna where a young prince, Simba (JD McCrary) is born to King Mufasa (James Earl Jones) but from the looks of it, not the whole jungle is thrilled about the news. As time passes, uncle Scar’s (Chiwetel Ejiofor) jealousy of young Simba grows, ultimately leading him to orchestrate his brother Mufasa’s death before forcefully taking over as king of the jungle. The battle for Pride Rock is wrought with betrayal and drama, ending with Simba’s exile. With help from a pair of newfound friends, Timon (Billy Eichner) and Pumbaa (Seth Rogen) Simba will have to grow up and figure out how to reclaim his rightful throne.

Directed by Jon Favreau, ‘Lion King’ is an update of the 1994 animated blockbuster of the same title. It accurately represented the peak of Disney’s animation production, rising to a critically acclaimed flick. ‘Lion King’ was the highest grossing film of 1994 with over $900 million in sales. The film went on to win Best Original Score (Hans Zimmer) and Best Original Song for ‘Can You Feel the Love Tonight’ by Elton John and Tim Rice at the Oscars alongside numerous recognitions worldwide –including a 93% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Thanks to the success of its predecessor, this remake has essentially become one of the most anticipated films in 2019 thus far –especially after its trailer release back in April.

After the trailer release, many questioned the ‘live-action’ factor. Favreau responded to these concerns, stating that the movie uses a combination of virtual reality and key frame animation, which means that the animals were all animated by hand, just like old animated movies.

Recognizable songs in the live-action remake of ‘Lion King’ include Can You Feel the Love Tonight, Hakuna Matata, Be Prepared, I Just Can’t Wait to Be King and Circle of Life with some anticipated new ones too.

Predictions for the film’s box office sales projections are between $180 – $230 million with a total US gross of $650 million by the end of its full run according to Box Office Pro. If the projections are correct, ‘Lion King’ is bound to top Disney’s live-action remake opening numbers -a spot currently held by ‘Beauty and the Beast’ which grossed over $504 million in US domestic earnings and $1.2 billion worldwide. The Lion King will also be the last family friendly movie until November when Frozen 2 premieres.

The film, which also features A-listers in the entertainment industry, is expected to boost the theatre opening as fans anticipate seeing how they perform first hand on the big screen. The full cast includes James Earl Jones –reprising his role as Mufasa, Beyoncé (and her 130 million plus followers) as Nala, Donald Glover as Simba, Billy Eichner and Seth Rogen as Timon and Pumbaa, and John Oliver as Zazu. Lion King is scheduled to hit theatres worldwide on July 19.


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