In a vast social media push this morning, Disney announced the full cast of the upcoming live action remake of one of their classics. “The Lion King” sees an all-star cast that includes Beyoncé (credited as Knowles-Carter) as Nala, Donald Glover as Simba, and the original James Earl Jones as Mufasa.
The Magic of Jon Favreau
On September 2016, Walt Disney Pictures confirmed Jon Favreau as the director for the film. Favreau’s variety of films include “Elf” with SNL’s Will Ferrell, “Iron Man” and “Iron Man 2” with Robert Downey Jr., and last year’s live action remake of another Disney classic, “The Jungle Book”. He seems to be doing well with these reboots; “The Jungle Book” became a critical and commercial success at a gross of over $966 million, making it one of the highest-grossing films of 2016 and the 35th highest-grossing film of all time. Additionally, the film won the Academy Award for Best Visual Effects in February this year against “Deepwater Horizon”, “Doctor Strange”, “Kubo and the Two Strings”, and “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story”.
The first round of casting announcements in February composed of Donald Glover with the lead and James Earl Jones reprising his character from the 1994 film. A month later, Favreau publicly stated that Queen B is his top choice for Nala and they’re willing to accommodate her busy schedule. 2017 rolled on and more roles were filled: Billy Eichner and Seth Rogen for Timon and Pumbaa, talkshow host John Oliver as Zazu, and Alfre Woodard and John Kani as Sarabi and Rafiki. Favreau rounded up the cast with Chiwetel Ejiofor as Scar, Beyoncé as Nala, Eric Andre as Azizi, Florence Kasumba as Shenzi, Keegan-Michael Key as Kamari, JD McCrary as Young Simba, and Shahadi Wright Joseph as Young Nala.
Production commenced earlier this summer in Los Angeles, California. Musical genius Hans Zimmer will also be on board to provide the score just like the 1994 film. “The Lion King” is expected to hit theatres on July 19, 2019.
Featured image from ESPN