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The Lion King's Jon Favreau Opens Up About VR Production & All-Star Cast

The Lion King's Jon Favreau Opens Up About VR Production & All-Star Cast

Check out this new image from Disney’s The Lion King remake on the cover of Entertainment Weekly‘s annual Summer Movie Preview issue, available at EW.com today and on newsstands on April 26!

Here’s what director Jon Favreau and cast members Seth Rogen and Chiwetel Ejiofor had to share with the outlet:

Jon on the process of virtual production: “We’ve basically built a multiplayer VR filmmaking game just for the purposes of making this movie…The whole reason for all of this is to make an animated film feel live-action—to have a real crew make all the camera decisions that you would on set, instead of somebody sitting at a keyboard programming in the camera moves.”

Jon on Beyonce’s (Nala) motivation to be involved in the film: “Part of it is that she’s got young kids, part of it is that it’s a story that feels good for this phase of her life and her career, and she really likes the original very much. And then, of course, there are these wonderful musical numbers that she can be involved with, and my God…she really lives up to her reputation as far as the beauty of her voice and talent.”

Seth (Pumbaa) on preserving the original film’s legacy: “I once heard it referred to as the crown jewel of the Disney movies, and for me at least, it’s for sure the one that hit me the hardest and taught me the most lessons about life and death and many things in between…Whenever Jon has shown me [footage], I weep uncontrollably because it just hits a raw nerve in some ways and taps directly into these feelings from my childhood, but updates them with a scope that is heavily impactful to me as an adult.”

Chiwetel (Scar) on the importance of casting black actors in the Africa-set fantasy:The Lion King is a wonderful opportunity to bring in a cast of black actors to play these extraordinary iconic roles…Obviously, I feel very connected to anything African because of my heritage, and that’s why it’s a very special experience to me. It’s wonderful that both Jon Favreau and Disney have really pushed to engage with that kind of casting.”

For more from the issue and to see brand-new images from the film, visit EW.com.

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