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Beyoncé Rounds Out Voice Cast of Live Action ‘Lion King’

Crew also is set for director Jon Favreau’s live action version of the animated classic, due in theaters in 2019.

The cast includes Donald Glover as future king Simba, Knowles-Carter as Simba’s friend-turned-love interest Nala, and James Earl Jones as Simba’s wise and loving father, Mufasa, reprising his iconic performance from Disney’s 1994 animated classic. Chiwetel Ejiofor was called on to portray Simba’s villainous uncle Scar, and Alfre Woodard portrays Simba’s no-nonsense mother, Sarabi. JD McCrary fills the shoes of Young Simba, a confident cub who can’t wait to be king, and Shahadi Wright Joseph brings tough cub Young Nala to life.

John Kani was cast as the wise baboon Rafiki, and John Oliver was tapped as hornbill Zazu, Mufasa’s loyal confidant. When Simba goes into exile, he relies on two newfound friends: Seth Rogen as naïve warthog Pumbaa, and Billy Eichner as know-it-all meerkat Timon.

Playing the hyenas are Florence Kasumba as Shenzi, Eric André as Azizi and Keegan-Michael Key as Kamari. 

The Lion King is directed by Favreau and produced by Favreau, Jeffrey Silver and Karen Gilchrist. Jeff Nathanson penned the screenplay based on the 1994 screenplay by Irene Mecchi, Jonathan Roberts and Linda Woolverton. Tom Peitzman and Thomas Schumacher are executive producers, and John Bartnicki is co-producer.

The award-winning team of artists tapped to bring the African savanna and its animal inhabitants to life include visual effects supervisor Rob Legato, who won Academy Awards for his work on The Jungle Book, Hugo and Titanic.

The film’s animation supervisor is Oscar-winner Andrew R. Jones. VFX supervisor is Adam Valdez, who won an Oscar for his work on The Jungle Book. Five-time Oscar nominee Caleb Deschanel, ASC, is director of photography, and James Chinlund serves as the production designer. Oscar winner Ben Grossman is virtual production supervisor, and Mark Livolsi, ACE, and Adam Gerstel are editors.

Hans Zimmer, who won an Oscar for his score for the animated classic, will score the adventure.

From Disney Live Action, The Lion King is slated for U.S. theaters on July 19, 2019.

Source: Disney

Thomas J. McLean's picture

Tom McLean has been writing for years about animation from a secret base in Los Angeles.