Walt Disney Pictures is on top of the world right now, whether it be for their beloved animated films or live-action fantasy adventures. For instance, coming down the pipeline within the next two years is a whole slew of future animated classics like Coco, as well as sequels to Cars, Wreck-It Ralph and The Incredibles. While in the live-action department, theatergoers can soon look forward to jetting off through time and space with the likes of Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, A Wrinkle in Time and Mary Poppins Returns.
Yet it might be Disney’s new line of live-action remakes that are currently eliciting the most excitement from the hearts of viewers young and old. By taking masterpieces like Alice in Wonderland, Cinderella, The Jungle Book, and Beauty and the Beast and reinventing them for the modern age, Walt Disney Pictures has created a virtual gold mine of possibilities for years to come. Presently in various stages of production are remakes for Mulan, Dumbo, The Little Mermaid, The Sword in the Stone and Peter Pan with absolutely no end in sight.
However, a new live-action adaptation has just jumped to the head of the pack. Jon Favreau (who directed last year’s live-action remake of The Jungle Book) has already started casting his upcoming adaptation of the 1994 animated classic The Lion King. In a surprise tease on Twitter this afternoon, Favreau revealed that Donald Glover has joined the movie as the lead, Simba, and James Earl Jones will be reprising his role as Simba’s father, Mufasa.
Based on a script from screenwriter Jeff Nathanson (Catch Me If You Can, Tower Heist), The Lion King is expected to use CGI to create life-like photorealistic environments and characters for the movie, much like in Favreau’s previous film The Jungle Book. This time around though, he’ll have the added challenge of there not being any humans in sight. It’ll be difficult then to make the film its own entity, instead of having it become just another animated movie like the original. The trick will be to make it look as real as possible, while also adjusting the story to support that this is no longer a cartoon.
Still, the talents of Glover and Jones should go a long way to bringing The Lion King to life. Matthew Broderick and Jonathan Taylor Thomas voiced the older and younger versions of Simba, respectively, in the original movie. Disney announced that Glover will be voicing adult Simba, so it will be interesting to see who is cast as the younger version of the character. Jones back as Mufasa will allow the movie to ground itself, before Glover is on his own and on his way to becoming king.
Screen Rant will have more information for you regarding Disney’s live-action The Lion King as soon as details are made available.