30 Facts About The Lion King


Lion King is a 1994 American animated musical drama film directed by Roger Allers and Rob Minkoff, produced by Walt Disney Feature Animation and released by Walt Disney Pictures.

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Lion King was released on June 15,1994, to critical acclaim, praising the film for its music, story, themes, and animation.

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The Lion King is the first Disney film to have been dubbed in Zulu, and the only African language aside from Arabic to have been used for a feature-length Disney dub.

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The Lion King Mufasa and Queen Sarabi's newborn son, Simba, is presented to the gathering animals by Rafiki the mandrill, the kingdom's shaman and advisor.

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Not counting most of the segments from Fantasia, Saludos Amigos, The Three Caballeros, Make Mine Music and Melody Time ; and The Rescuers Down Under, The Lion King was the first Disney animated feature to be an original story, rather than be based on pre-existing works and characters.

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The filmmakers have said that the story of The Lion King was inspired by the lives of Joseph and Moses, from the Bible, and William Shakespeare's Hamlet, though the story has drawn some comparisons to Shakespeare's lesser known plays Henry IV, Part 1 and Part 2.

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The Lion King's role was changed into a female hyena, Shenzi, voiced by Whoopi Goldberg, who insisted on being in the movie.

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The Lion King's performance inspired the writers to incorporate more of his acting as von Bulow—adding one of that character's lines, "You have no idea"—and inspired animator Andreas Deja to watch Reversal of Fortune and Damage to incorporate Irons's facial traits and tics.

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Development of The Lion King coincided with that of Pocahontas, which most of the animators of Walt Disney Feature Animation decided to work on instead, believing it would be the more prestigious and successful of the two.

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Use of the song "The Lion Sleeps Tonight" in a scene with Timon and Pumbaa led to disputes between Disney and the family of South African Solomon Linda, who composed the song in 1939.

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Lion King had a limited release in the United States on June 15,1994, playing in only two theaters, El Capitan Theatre in Los Angeles and Radio City Music Hall in New York City, and featuring live shows with ticket prices up to $30.

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Lion King was first released on VHS and LaserDisc in the United States on March 3,1995, under Disney's "Masterpiece Collection" video series.

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The CAV laserdisc Deluxe Edition contained the film, six concept art lithographs and The Making of The Lion King, and added storyboards, character design artwork, concept art, rough animation, and a directors' commentary that the VHS edition did not have, on a total of four double sided discs.

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The Platinum Edition of The Lion King featured changes made to the film during its IMAX re-release, including re-drawn crocodiles in the "I Just Can't Wait to Be King" sequence as well as other alterations.

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Lion King was released to home media as part of the Walt Disney Signature Collection first released on Digital HD on August 15,2017, and on Blu-ray and DVD on August 29,2017.

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Lion King was released on Ultra HD Blu-ray and 4K digital download on December 3,2018.

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The Lion King was the highest-grossing G-rated film in the United States from 1994 to 2003 and again from 2011 to 2019 until its total was surpassed by the computer-animated Toy Story 4.

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In 2011, The Lion King was converted to 3D for a two-week limited theatrical re-issue and subsequent 3D Blu-ray release.

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The successful 3D re-release of The Lion King made Disney and Pixar plan 3D theatrical re-releases of Beauty and the Beast, Finding Nemo, Monsters, Inc, and The Little Mermaid during 2012 and 2013.

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The Lion King is the most mature of these films, and there clearly has been a conscious effort to please adults as much as children.

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In 2008, The Lion King was ranked as the 319th greatest film ever made by Empire magazine, and in June 2011, TIME named it one of "The 25 All-TIME Best Animated Films".

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The 1994 release of The Lion King drew a protest in Japan, where Kimba and its creator Osamu Tezuka are cultural icons.

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Takayuki Matsutani, the president of Tezuka Productions which created Kimba the White Lion, said in 1994 that "quite a few staff of our company saw a preview of The Lion King, discussed this subject and came to the conclusion that you cannot avoid having these similarities as long as you use animals as characters and try to draw images out of them".

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In June 2014, it was announced that a new TV series based on the film would be released called The Lion Guard, featuring Kion, the second-born cub of Simba and Nala.

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The Lion Guard is a sequel to The Lion King and takes place during the time-gap within The Lion King II: Simba's Pride, with the last 2 episodes of Season 3 taking place after the events of that film.

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The live-action film is inspired by The Lion King and serves as a visual album for the tie-in album The Lion King: The Gift, which was curated by Beyonce for the film.

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The Lion King provides one of the worlds featured in the 2011 action-adventure game Disney Universe, and Simba was featured in the Nintendo DS title Disney Friends.

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The Lion King musical was directed by Julie Taymor and featured songs from both the movie and Rhythm of the Pride Lands, along with three new compositions by Elton John and Tim Rice.

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Lion King inspired two attractions retelling the story of the film at Walt Disney Parks and Resorts.

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The first, "The Legend of the Lion King", featured a recreation of the film through life-size puppets of its characters, and ran from 1994 to 2002 at Magic Kingdom in Walt Disney World.

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