The live-action remake of the Lion King isn’t expected to hit theaters until 2019, but Disney got the anticipation started early with a preview of what fans can expect from the Jon Favreau-directed project. Jackman also posted a photo of himself at Disneyland on Friday, which only added fuel to the fire.
Director Jon Favreau debuted footage from the new film at the D23 expo, and Jackman’s absence put a nail in the coffin for some. Favreau was also the genius behind the majorly successful The Jungle Book remake a year ago.
As “The Circle of Life” plays, he’s held aloft by the baboon Rafiki, a moment that causes the animals gathered below to shake, sway and trumpet their excitement.
It’s plausible that Jackman could really be the voice of Scar, and his team is trying to keep it under wraps until there is an official announcement. The crowd, not unsurprisingly, went nuts and that was all there was to say about The Lion King. Famous comedian and host of HBO’s Last Week Tonight show John Oliver is the hornbill Zazu, and the last is Wolverine star Hugh Jackman as the villain, Scar. Alas with what Jackman’s representatives have said, it seems there’s zero room for Jackman being involved.
Today, kicked off the biggest day for Disney’s D23 Convention.
Disney has turned a lot of its animated classics into live action films already, and with new takes on Dumbo, Aladdin and Mulan on the horizon, it’s not stopping anytime soon. The 1992 flick is also getting it’s own live-action remake and Will Smith has been cast as the Genie. He’s making Lion King (scheduled for a July 19, 2019 release) in Los Angeles, again using virtual production techniques by reteaming with Jungle Book’s Oscar winning VFX supervisor Rob Legato and lead VFX house MPC. Note: Disney has not stated when and if it will release this first look at the film.