Ensemble titles can sometimes overcook the mixture when it comes to all-star names. Yet the upcoming Lion King live-action remake from Jon Favreau has put those concerns to one side, creating room for a wide array of names from the entertainment business.
Slated for a release on July 19, 2019, Favreau will be looking to emulate his success after helming Disney's other live-action reboot of The Jungle Book. Scoring a magnificent box office global haul of $966.6m, the studio are banking on the same formula as that 2016 picture brought aboard Ben Kingsley, Bill Murray, Idris Elba, Scarlett Johansson, Christopher Walken, Lupita Nyong'o and youngster Neel Sethi.
2019's Lion King Sits Atop a Thrown of Stars
Director Jon Favreau issued a short statement on the announcement of the cast, explaining that his job is now all the more easier with the people the studio has managed to assemble.
"It is a director's dream to assemble a talented team like this to bring this classic story to life."
With Last Week Tonight with John Oliver host John Oliver landing the part of Zazu back in the summer, the rest of the cast leaps out as a whose who of Hollywood talent:
John Kani as Rafiki, Alfre Woodard as Sarabi, JD McCrary as Young Simba, Shahadi Wright Joseph as Young Nala, Florence Kasumba as Shenzi, Eric André as Azizi, Keegan-Michael Key as Kamari, Beyoncé Knowles-Carter as Nala, Donald Glover as Simba, Chiwetel Ejiofor as Scar, James Earl Jones as Mufasa, Seth Rogen as Pumbaa and Billy Eichner as Timon.
JF Casting The Big Names Behind The Scenes As Well
They might not carry the same swagger or cache as the voiceover artists, but Disney and Favreau are looking to have a team that matches the acting talent behind the scenes. Favreau will double his duties as a producer alongside his colleagues from The Jungle Book in Karen Gilchrist and John Bartnicki.
Producer Jeffrey Silver from Edge of Tomorrow fame will link up with the likes of Pirates 5 screenwriter Jeff Nathanson as a duo of Tom Peitzman and Thomas Schumacher will act as executive producers of the epic family adventure tale. Effects supervisor Rob Legato is one of the real stars of the show, taking home an Academy Award with Favreau for his work on The Jungle Book after impressing as a virtual production creator on the 2009 blockbuster Avatar.
All the pieces are in place to breathe new life into a movie that spawned a phenomenon in 1994.