Disney announces prequel to 'Lion King' titled 'Mufasa: The Lion King'text_fields
Los Angeles: At the international Disney fan convention D23 Expo, director Barry Jenkins took the stage to officially introduce "Mufasa: The Lion King," a new prequel to the 2019 "Lion King" movie.
'Mufasa' tells the origin story of the famous Disney father, focusing on his time spent growing up with his brother Scar. It was first announced in 2020 as a sequel to the 2019 movie.
In place of James Earl Jones, who played Mufasa in both 1994 original and the 2019 CGI remake, the movie will use the voices of Aaron Pierre and Kelvin Harrison Jr. as the characters' younger selves. Jeremy Irons and Chiwetel Ejiofor will voice the evil Scar, IANS reported.
In addition to announcing the title, exclusive preview footage of the film was shown to the audience of the D23 expo, reports Variety'.
The footage began with Rafiki (John Kani) telling the story of Mufasa to young cubs, revealing that the lion was actually an orphaned cub who had to navigate the world alone until he rose to become the king of Pride Rock. As such, the film goes beyond the iconic Pride Lands to show him as a cub in a desert, where he is swept away by a flood and becomes an orphan.
"In this place, a lion was born without a drop of nobility in his blood," Rafiki narrates.
"The lion who would change our lives forever."
Although brief, the footage also included narration from Billy Eichner's Timon, in a meta joke tag for the footage: "Wait wait wait, am I not in this story? I don't feel seen."
'The Lion King' is one of the most beloved Disney properties of all time, with the original remaining a critically acclaimed classic and grossing over $960 million worldwide.
The 2019 remake, which replaced the 2D art style of the original with realistic CGI animal renderings, received mixed reviews from critics but was even more successful, grossing over $1 billion at the global box office.
'Mufasa' will be Jenkins third feature film, after directing the Oscar-winning 'Moonlight' and 'If Beale Street Could Talk'.A release date for the film has not yet been announced.