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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 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

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'The Lion King' Gets Brand New Trailer - Watch Now!

Disney’s live action Lion King has a brand new trailer that just debuted – and we’re watching Simba grow up!

Here’s a synopsis of the upcoming film: Simba idolizes his father, King Mufasa, and takes to heart his own royal destiny. But not everyone in the kingdom celebrates the new cub’s arrival. Scar, Mufasa’s brother—and former heir to the throne—has plans of his own. The battle for Pride Rock is ravaged with betrayal, tragedy and drama, ultimately resulting in Simba’s exile. With help from a curious pair of newfound friends, Simba will have to figure out how to grow up and take back what is rightfully his.

The voice cast stars Donald Glover as Simba, Beyoncé Knowles-Carter as Nala, James Earl Jones as Mufasa, Chiwetel Ejiofor as Scar, Seth Rogen as Pumbaa, and Billy Eichner as Timon.

The movie hits theaters on July 19, 2019.

Check out the brand new images as well…

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Disney's 'The Lion King' Live-Action Movie Debuts First Trailer!

The teaser trailer for the upcoming live-action remake of Disney’s The Lion King has been revealed!

The first look at the Jon Favreau-directed movie shows some of the iconic sequences from the animated film remade in live-action, including baby Simba’s debut at Pride Rock.

James Earl Jones is reprising his role as the voice of Mufasa and his voice is heard in the trailer in the famous speech to Simba: “Everything the light touches is our kingdom. But, a king’s time as ruler rises and falls like the sun. One day, the sun will set on my time here, and will rise with you as the new king.”

The movie also features the voices of Donald Glover as Simba, Beyonce Knowles-Carter as Nala, Chiwetel Ejiofor as Scar, Seth Rogen as Pumbaa, Billy Eichner as Timon, John Oliver as Zazu, and Keegan-Michael Key as Kamari.

The Lion King will hit theaters on July 19, 2019.

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