The Lion King (1994)

 ●  English ● 1 hr 29 mins

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A lion prince, Simba, is born in Africa and the animals of the Pride Lands pay tribute. Later Simba is told by his father, King Mufasa, that when Mufasa dies, Simba will become King of the Pride Lands. Simba's Uncle Scar would have been king after Mufasa had Mufasa not had a child. Fuelled by rage, Scar plots to kill Mufasa and Simba so he is able to take over the throne. He uses the hyenas to cause a stampede through the canyon where Mufasa and Simba are, and personally ensures Mufasa falls to his death. Simba survives so Scar implies that the stampede was Simba's fault and that the pride will blame him. Simba flees the Pride Lands meaning never to return home. Simba is found, collapsed with exhaustion, by Timon the Meerkat, and Pumbaa the Warthog, and the trio become fast friends. Simba stays with them well into adulthood until his childhood friend, Nala, hunting beyond the Pride Lands that herds had deserted under Scar's mismanagement stumbles upon Simba's new home. Astonished to find him alive, she begs him to return to the Pride Lands, where Scar has reigned as King for years, and ruined everything. All of the animals will starve if Simba does not return. Simba eventually agrees to fight for his kingdom. Simba battles Scar, and learns his father's death was Scar's fault, not his own. Simba prevails and takes his fathers place as rightful king, mirroring "The Circle of Life."
See Storyline (May Contain Spoilers)

Cast: Jonathan Taylor Thomas

Crew: Rob Minkoff (Director), Roger Allers (Director), Hans Zimmer (Music Director)

Rating: U (India)

Genres: Adventure, Animation, Drama, Family, Musical

Release Dates: 24 Jun 1994 (India)

Tagline: See it for the first time ever in 3D (2011 3D re-release)

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Did you know? "The Lion King" is very similar to a story almost unknown to Western culture but one of the most beloved historical stories of the Niger Congo language family (western Africa). It is a story about one of their greatest kings - "Sundiata: An Epic of Old Mali". The main character Sundiata (which, directly translated, means "the lion king") is a young prince banished from his homeland by his family after his father dies. The story tracks his overcoming of emotional and physical ailments to later return to his kingdom and battle the evil sorcerer king who has overtaken it in his absence. This is a true story (with some magical elements added) and is still told by griots (history keepers for upper-class families, aka Rafiki in the film). Read More
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as Young Simba
as Fighting Hyena
Supporting Actress
as Banzai
as Pumbaa
as Young Simba - in 'Morning Report'
Supporting Actor
as Mufasa
as Young Simba
as Scar
as Ed
as Sarabi
as Adult Simba
as Adult Nala
as Timon
as Young Nala
as Rafiki
as Zazu
as Shenzi



Production Company
Executive Producer
Associate Producer


Music Director
Music Label



Art Director
Production Designer


Casting Director


Film Type:
Feature Film
Colour Info:
Sound Mix:
Dolby SR
Frame Rate:
24 fps
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1
See it for the first time ever in 3D (2011 3D re-release)
Life's greatest adventure is finding your place in the Circle of Life.
The King Has Returned. [for Christmas 2002 IMAX release.]
The Circle of Life
Audio/Video Mismatch
Before assuming the throne, Simba walks down Pride Rock. Zazu bows to Simba and although his mouth is moving no words are spoken. This is because Zazu was supposed to say "Your Majesty".

Character Error
When Simba and Mufasa view the sunrise, they refer to the "shadowy place" as being on their right. As they were facing the sunrise (east) that would mean that anything on the right side would be south. And yet, Scar refers to it later as the place "beyond the northern border."

When Nala is crouched in the grass right before she pounces at Pumbaa, her eyes are green. When she's fighting with Simba, her eyes are blue.

When the young Simba and Nala are walking towards the "water hole" with Zazu flying above his shadow does not flap its wings as often as Zazu does.

In one of the final scenes where Simba walks up Pride Rock to roar, it is raining. When we see Timon and Pumbaa briefly, they are dry while the other characters all have signs of being wet.

The pads on Scar's paws change from multiple pads to one large pad throughout the movie.

Grown-up Simba's eyes switch from white to yellow during the movie.

When Mufasa and Simba are talking at the top of Pride Rock, facing the sun, their shadows stream out behind them, which is correct. However, as Simba says "Everything the light touches", his shadow is in front of him, which is wrong. It should be cast on his right. Also, in the next shot, when Simba and Mufasa are facing south towards the "shadowy place", their right sides are in shadow, with the light shining from the left. But it is sunrise, the sun, and therefore the light, should be on their right.

The number of whiskers each male lion has changes from scene to scene, and sometimes the whiskers disappear altogether. None of the lionesses in the film have whiskers, though obviously in reality females do have whiskers.

In her first appearance, Nala's mother Sarafina's toes are the same color as the rest of her body. However, when Scar is informing the pride of the accident, her toes are lighter. A second later, during Nala's close-up, Sarafina's toes are once again the same as her body.

When Scar first begins his speech after Mufasa's death, nine adult lionesses can be made out. However, when the hyenas begin to appear, there are suddenly only eight. The same thing happens when Simba returns to Pride Rock. At first there are six lionesses, then seven, then six again, then only five, then six.

When Simba comes back to Pride Rock, he looks out at it, and you can see dead trees on Pride Rock. When Nala comes and looks at it they are gone. When Timon and Pumbaa come and look at it, the trees are back, but when the storm movie in they are gone again. After that scene, the trees are there for the rest of the movie.

Rafiki leads Simba to a lake claiming to show him Mufasa. Simba looks up from the lake when he hears Mufasa in the sky. He never moves all the while talking to Mufasa, which means he should be standing at the edge of the lake. But when Mufasa fades away Simba runs forward and we realize Simba was nowhere near the lake, but on a grassland. If he was near the lake, he should have fallen into it when he ran forward.

Simba clearly pounces on Zazu's back, but when they are on the ground, Simba's paws are on Zazu's front.

The number of stripes on Timon's back alternate between shot from five to six.

We see Simba scratch Shenzi's cheek, leaving visible cuts, but shortly after, Shenzi is healed.

As Simba climbs a dead tree to escape the wildebeest stampede, he leaves scratches on the bark. In all later shots the tree is intact.

When Simba finds Mufasa's dead body, his tears leave stains running down both cheeks. When Scar appears, Simba's face alternates between having tear stains on both cheeks in medium shots and only on his right cheek in close-ups. Once Scar tells Simba to run away, the stains disappear altogether.

When Timon and Pumbaa find Simba in the desert, Timon is frightened and climbs on top of Pumbaa. On the next shot we only see Pumbaa's shadow cast in front of Simba, without Timon. When we next see Pumbaa, Timon is back on Pumbaa's back.

When Simba approaches Mufasa's dead body, the camera shows Mufasa from the back and his paw is clearly past his nose. But when are then shown him face on, his paw has moved to the same level as his nose.

Near the end of the film when Scar has Simba hanging on the edge of Pride Rock, the camera moves out and the lightning crashes, and we can see Simba is holding on to the rock up to his elbows, yet in the next scene we can see he is only holding on by his paws.

The number of Simba's whiskers on each side of his cheek changes from 4 to 5 and back again in some scenes.

When Banzai the hyena says, "Man, that lousy Mufasa - I won't be able to sit for a week," he has visible cuts near his behind, but in the shot when he wrestles with Ed, they are gone.

The hyenas are seen throughout the entire film with three toes on all their paws. But when the hyenas are chasing Simba, Banzai claws at him after he squeezes through a rock, and his paw has four toes.

Thorns that are all over Banzai's body disappear completely between shots with no time for him to remove them all.

When Rafiki smells the dust on the wind and realizes Simba is alive, he dips the tips of his fingers into the red paint in order to adapt his picture. In the next shot, his thumb is red too.

When Simba and Nala are trying to escape the hyenas and fall through the rotten piece of wood, there is debris on the ground. In the next shot when Simba 'roars', the ground is clean.

During the 'Be Prepared' sequence, Scar knocks a bone out of Ed's jaws, making him sit bolt upright, his tongue hanging out. In the very next shot, it's gone.

In the 'I Just Can't Wait to Be King' sequence, as Zazu is telling the cubs off, Nala has her front paws in the water. In the next shot, both paws are on the bank, with no time to move.

In the scene where Pumbaa is grovelling before Simba, Timon walks up to him and places his hands on the center of Pumbaa's nose, between his nostrils. In the next shot, his hands are more towards the top.

When Timon starts his Hula dance, when is back is to the camera, he is not wearing his lei (flower necklace). It suddenly appears a few frames later.

When Nala is chasing Pumbaa and he is trapped under the root, he begins digging frantically as Timon runs up. However, by the time Timon has jumped onto his head, the ground is smooth again.

When Simba is talking to Scar about the graveyard, Scar says "And he's absolutely right! Far too dangerous! Only the bravest lions go there!" Scar is sitting up and looks off to the right of the screen, but in the next shot he is sitting down with paws folded.

Disappearing Tree/Rock - When the wildebeest herd starts to stampede through the valley, Simba is first on top of the rock that is under the tree, in the valley. The next scene then shows Simba standing out in the open floor of the valley as the wildebeests come running at him, and now there is no tree or rock anywhere to be seen. Then as Simba is shown running away from the wildebeests, we can see the tree and rock in the background again.

When Timon files down one of Simba's claws you can clearly see that it is very short, but in another scene, shortly after where Simba eats a grub, you can see the same claw at the same size it was before being filed down, having had no time to regrow.

When Mufasa pins the hyenas, he is facing the wall where Simba is. When the hyenas run away, they go straight ahead, yet are seen running away from Mufasa.

Errors in Geography
Part of the lyrics in the song"The Circle of Life" are "there's a lion and a tiger", yet no tigers live in Africa.

Errors in Geography
Leaf-cutter ants, a gopher and some giant anteaters, all native to the Americas, are shown living happily in Africa.

Errors in Geography
During the "sunrise" scene the river is seen on the "south" side of Pride Rock. Later during Simba's "circle of life" lesson the river is on the "north" side of Pride Rock.

Errors in Geography
When Mufasa shows Simba the kingdom, they are staring at the sunrise in the east, and Mufasa says Simba must never go to the dark area to their right, which is to the south. In the next scene, Scar asks if Simba knows about that same area, along "the northern border."

Factual Mistake
Rafiki the monkey appears to be some sort of bizarre mandrill-baboon hybrid. He has the colorful face of a mandrill, but the long, kinked tail of a baboon (mandrills have very short tails).

Factual Mistake
The elephant skeletons would have to come from freakishly large elephants. Hyenas could not pass through the trunk socket of an elephant's skull.

Factual Mistake
Scar is younger than Mufasa, yet Scar has a darker mane. As a lion's mane darkens as it ages, Mufasa's mane would have to be darker than Scar's.

When Banzai says, "Here, kitty, kitty, kitty," it may appear as though no one is actually speaking. This is because the shot cutting from the cubs to the hyenas is very quick. However, pay close attention only to Banzai's location on the screen: you see his mouth moves when he says "here," and he's audibly saying "kitty, kitty, kitty" through gritted teeth, with his lips shown curled back. If you grit your teeth, curl your lips back, and say this line, you can do so without moving your mouth and it will still sound perfect because you only need to use your tongue to make the sounds.

When Scar tells Simba "Remember, its our little secret!", Scar is standing too close to the camera for his legs to be seen, and his position is way outside the ledge and he seems to be standing in mid-air.

In the beginning, Rafiki is shown climbing up the rock to greet Mufasa. But from any other longer shot of the rock, its obvious that there's no way anyone can climb it from the front.

At the end of the elephant graveyard scene, Scar's shadow on the wall does not match his pose.

When Rafiki parts the grass to show Simba the Dream Pool, he pulls aside the grass on Simba's right (and holds it there). However when Simba passes through the gap, the grass on his left is also pushed aside as if by some invisible hand. It springs back once he's through.

During the "Mufasa, Mufasa, Mufasa," scene, Shenzi's hair changes when she rolls over to laugh.

If you look close, when Simba is sitting on the rock during the "Hakuna-Matata" song, the pads on his right paw are bigger then the paw itself.

Scar Steps on Smoke - When Scar begins to sing "Be Prepared", he can be seen walking towards the camera while green smoke is billowing up around him. If you notice on the right side of the screen there is a cloud of green smoke that comes up and you'll notice that Scar's right rear foot (screen right) walks over and on top of part of the smoke.
The lions' roars are actually not lion roars at all. Tiger roars were used for the effect, because real lions' roars aren't as powerful.

The wildebeest stampede took Disney's CG department approximately three years to animate.

There have been rumors that when Simba collapses on the cliff after talking with Timon and Pumbaa about stars, the dust that flies off the cliff forms the letters SEX. In fact it forms the letters SFX, the abbreviation of the special-effects team that worked on that portion of the film. For all subsequent releases more flowers and dust were added to the scene to avoid controversy.

To date this movie still holds the record for being the highest grossing traditionally animated film in history.

The lyric for the opening chant of "The Circle of Life" is: "Nants ingonyama bagithi Baba / Sithi uhm ingonyama / Nants ingonyama bagithi baba / Sithi uhhmm ingonyama / Ingonyama Siyo Nqoba / Ingonyama Ingonyama nengw enamabala". This translates as: "Here comes a lion, Father / Oh yes, it's a lion / Here comes a lion, Father / Oh yes, it's a lion / A lion We're going to conquer / A lion A lion and a leopard come to this open place".

One of the bugs that Timon pulls out of a knothole during Hakuna Matata is wearing Mickey Mouse ears.

A few weeks before the film opened, Elton John was given a special screening. Noticing that the film's love song had been left out, he successfully lobbied to have the song put back in. Later, "Can You Feel the Love Tonight" won him an Academy Award for Best Original Song.

Besides inspirations from William Shakespeare's Hamlet (1990), the story also has elements of the Osirian family myths of Ancient Egyptian mythology. In the Osirian myths, the king (Mufasa/Osiris) is killed by his jealous brother (Scar/Seth) and the rightful heir (Simba/Horus) is sent into exile as a boy. The murdered king visits and mentors his son in ghostly visits and when the heir comes of age, he returns to exact revenge on his father's murderer.

During "Be Prepared", the hyenas' marching past Scar on the elevated rock was inspired by footage of Nazis marching by Adolf Hitler on a podium.

While recording the scene where Simba gets pinned down by Nala, Jonathan Taylor Thomas was hit on his back to make it sound like he had just gotten the wind knocked out of him.

Originally the film was going to be about a conflict between lions and baboons, and Scar was going to be the baboon leader. Rafiki, the only baboon in the film, was instead going to be a cheetah.

Jim Cummings had to fill in for Jeremy Irons during the song "Be Prepared". Jeremy threw out his voice after singing, "You won't get a sniff without me!".

Adult Simba's mane was supposedly inspired by Jon Bon Jovi's hair.

In the end of the scene where Mufasa explains to Simba that the stars are old kings, we can see the constellation of Leo (the lion) in the sky.

Unlike the other lions, Scar's claws are always displayed throughout the movie.

Although all of the animals are obviously anthropomorphic in the film, hyenas (as the villainous characters) were most given the short end of the stick from the reality. In fact, Spotted Hyenas are considered the equal of lions in terms of intelligence and ferocity. They have an equally intricate social structure and are less likely to kill their own kind than lions (hyena clan matriarchs allow very little intra-species aggression). Also, while portrayed as nearly full scavengers, in reality lions scavenge the kills of hyenas as much as (if not more so) than hyenas scavenge lion kills.

The line, "What do you want me to do, dress in drag and do the hula?" was improvised by Nathan Lane.

The plot-line is loosely based upon William Shakespeare's Hamlet; a story of a young prince whose uncle takes over the kingdom and marries the queen after killing the king/prince's father. After being away from home for a period of time, these events lead to the prince's plans for revenge. The prince receives some advice from his father's ghost. Also, during the scene where Zazu sings "I've Got a Lovely Bunch of Coconuts", Scar Has a skull in his hand.

The original script included several characters which were cut. There was another lion cub named Mee-Too, a bat-eared fox, and a rhino with a tickbird on his back. In fact the tickbird was kept and evolved into Zazu.

When Mufasa tells Simba about the Great Kings of the Past if you look at the stars in the wide shot you can see Mickey Mouse.

John Cleese, Eric Idle, Michael Palin, Terry Jones, Terry Gilliam and Patrick Stewart were all considered for the role of Zazu. The role was finally given to Rowan Atkinson after the animators watched some episodes of Mr Bean (1990). They even modeled Zazu's appearance after Atkinson. According to producer Don Hahn, every English comedian (as well as Patrick Stewart and Simon Callow, both of whom are classically trained Shakespearean actors) who performed from 1960-1991 and were still active in acting were either seriously considered, turned down or auditioned for the role.

The animators were so impressed with Jeremy Irons's performance that they worked Irons' features into Scar's face.

At the end of the movie when Simba looks up to the stars and hears "Remember", you can make out a lion standing from the stars, representing Mufasa's star-sign.

"The Lion King" is very similar to a story almost unknown to Western culture but one of the most beloved historical stories of the Niger Congo language family (western Africa). It is a story about one of their greatest kings - "Sundiata: An Epic of Old Mali". The main character Sundiata (which, directly translated, means "the lion king") is a young prince banished from his homeland by his family after his father dies. The story tracks his overcoming of emotional and physical ailments to later return to his kingdom and battle the evil sorcerer king who has overtaken it in his absence. This is a true story (with some magical elements added) and is still told by griots (history keepers for upper-class families, aka Rafiki in the film).

This is the second movie in which James Earl Jones (Mufasa) and Madge Sinclair (Sarabi) perform together as an African King and Queen. Jones and Sinclair were also King and Queen of a fictional African nation in Coming to America (1988).

In the special edition release, crew had to hire a new actor to voice Young Simba singing for the "Morning Report" since the original singing voice is now an adult. They hired Evan Saucedo, making him the 4th actor to voice young Simba.

Elton John and Tim Rice were a little shocked when they saw that the producers originally intended to have their (eventual) Oscar-winning love ballad "Can You Feel the Love Tonight" as a duet between Timon and Pumbaa.

The premiere for the IMAX version of the movie in New York had a strange request on the invitations: "No nannies." (In other words, "You are more than welcome to bring your children to this movie, but we sent the invitation to you and not to them for a reason.")

Several Disney animators went to Africa to study animal behavior and interaction in the wild. A grown lion and a cub were also brought into the animation studio as models for anatomy and musculature.

The first Disney cartoon to be dubbed into Zulu for its African release.

When writer Irene Mecchi came on board, she was told that the story pitch was "Bambi (1942) in Africa meets Hamlet (1990)", or "Bamlet", as she termed it.

A new computer program had to be written for the CG wildebeest stampede that allowed hundreds of computer generated animals to run but without colliding into each other.

The groundhog that pops up after Simba's pouncing lesson (the song "Morning Report" in the special edition) was originally going to be a naked mole rat, but the animators couldn't get him to look right. One of the directors said, "We would've lost our G rating!"

The music of the little song Timon performs for the hyenas ("LUAU!") is a fast-paced parody of the Aloha Chant, which can be heard in Walt Disney's Enchanted Tiki Room in Disneyland.

Originally, Scar was going to send adult Nala away from Pride Rock because she ignored his romantic approaches, after which she finds Simba alive and well with Timon and Pumbaa. This idea was ultimately abandoned, as sexual harassment was considered improper in a family movie. However, the stage musical adaptation includes this plot development as part of director Julie Taymor's efforts to expand the female characters' presence in the story.

An extra song for Timon and Pumbaa, Warthog Rhapsody, was written by Elton John and Tim Rice for the film, and was recorded by Nathan Lane, Ernie Sabella, and Jason Weaver. The sequence that was planned for it was worked out on the storyboard, but was never animated and so the song was not used; the song was included on "Rhythm of the Pride Lands," a companion CD to the movie's soundtrack.

Nearly twenty minutes of the film were animated at the Disney-MGM Studios. Ultimately, more than 600 artists, animators and technicians contributed to "The Lion King" over its lengthy production schedule. More than one million drawings were created for the film, including 1,197 hand-painted backgrounds and 119,058 individually colored frames of film.

"The Lion King" opened on Broadway in 1997. The musical garnered 6 Tony Awards including Best Musical, and is produced by Disney Theatrical.

There is a lost verse of "Hakuna Matata" that was storyboarded which explained Timon's situation. It was later used in "The Lion King 1 1/2" (2004).

The original opening to the film was supposed to have been a quiet dialogue-heavy sequence. When composer Hans Zimmer prepared his interpretation of Circle of Life, he made an extended version so he would have some flexibility as to what to cut for the film. The animators were so impressed with the work that they decided to change the beginning into the currently seen sequence so they could use the entire work that Zimmer prepared.

The last Disney movie to be supervised by Jeffrey Katzenberg before he left to form DreamWorks.

Hinting to its timeless popularity this movie remains best selling home video of all time, with more than 55 million copies sold to date.

Nathan Lane and Ernie Sabella were originally cast as the hyenas Banzai and Shenzi (played by Whoopi Goldberg and Cheech Marin in the film). The crew loved their performance and thought the duo would be even better as Timon and Pumbaa.

Mufasa was to sing a song titled To Be King, but it didn't suit James Earl Jones' singing voice.

In the dubbed Dutch version of the film, Timon and Pumbaa's voices are spoken in Flemish, a dialect of Dutch spoken in Belgium. The accent given to Rafiki and Simba's mother comes from Suriname, a former Dutch colony in South America. The rest of the characters speak with standard Dutch dialects found in the Netherlands.

Tim Curry and Malcolm McDowell were both considered for the role of Scar.

As of June 2008, this movie was ranked #4 on the American Film Institute's list of the 10 greatest films in the genre "Animation".

Nala's mother is named Sarafina. The name is never used in the film, however it does appear in the credits and on pieces of merchandise based on the film, including the trading cards issued at Burger King for a Lion King-based promotion.

Originally the Hula dance with Timon was going to be a "Saturday Night Fever" (1977) like disco dance.

This animated movie was Gregory Peck's favorite animated film, he also ranked it in his top five all time favorite movies.

The warthog Pumbaa is the first Disney character to fart on film

An alternate version of Can You Feel the Love Tonight, a comic version to be sung by Timon and Pumbaa was storyboarded and even recorded but never used.

The main locations for the film, including Pride Rock and the Gorge, are modeled after Hell's Gate National Park in Kenya.

The original concept for the production design was to stylize the backgrounds to invoke the colorful and graphic nature of African fabric patterns and tribal art. However, this gave the film an overly stylized quality so the production team then opted for the epic, mystical feel that we see in the film today.

Originally, the hyenas Banzai and Shenzi were supposed to be voiced by Tommy Chong and Cheech Marin. But the directors couldn't get hold of Chong, so they cast Whoopi Goldberg as Shenzi instead.

One of the original villain groups being considered was a pack of jackals.

Production took place at Walt Disney Animation Studios in Glendale, California, and Disney-MGM Studios in Orlando, Florida. Thirteen supervising animators, both in California and Florida, were responsible for establishing the personalities and setting the tone for the film's main characters.

Matthew Broderick and Nathan Lane later appeared together in "The Producers" (2005). Coincidentally, both films now exist as Broadway musicals.

Before Rowan Atkinson was cast as Zazu, many other British comedy actors were considered for the role, these include Tim Brooke-Taylor, Graeme Garden, Bill Oddie, David Jason, Peter Cook, Dudley Moore, Spike Milligan, Ronnie Barker, Ronnie Corbett and Vic Reeves.

Originally titled "King of the Jungle", it was supposed to be about African lions living in the jungle until the production team realized that lions don't live in the jungle. Interestingly enough, the phrase "King of the Jungle" is still used on certain T-shirts sold at the Disney Store.

The scenes of the hyenas chasing Simba out of the Pride lands and into the desert originally went screen right to screen left. The filmmakers flipped all the shots so that the chase now went screen left to screen right, so as to match the shot of Simba running back home to face Scar (he runs from screen right to screen left).

This was first Disney animation movie to be dubbed into Portuguese in Portugal rather than Brazil.

The scriptwriters had originally envisioned Sean Connery as the voice of Mufasa.

The Broadway production of "The Lion King" opened at the New Amsterdam Theater on October 15, 1997, has run for 6325 performances and is the fifth longest-running show on Broadway (as of February 2013). "The Lion King" won the 1998 Tony Award (New York City) for the Best Musical and received nominations for Best Score and Best Book.

This inspiring drama was voted number 6 in channel 4's (UK) "Greatest Family Films"

For its Platinum Edition DVD release, a new song was recorded and animated. "The Morning Report" was written for the Broadway musical by Elton John and Tim Rice. They wrote two other songs for the play, "Chow Down" and "The Madness of King Scar".

The Italian pop version of the song "The Circle of Life", sung in Italian by Ivana Spagna, was a major hit in Italy in 1994/95, alongside the original version by Elton John.

This epic animation adventure premiered at the famed Radio City Music Hall in New York City.

Despite repeated allegations of plagiarism of the Tezuka Productions' TV series Kimba the White Lion (1965), first shown in the 1960s, Disney maintain that all the similarities are coincidental.

George Scribner was the film's original director.

This movie was voted number 1 in Cuatro's (Spain) "Tu película Disney".

In early drafts, Scar was a rogue lion with no relation to Mufasa. Eventually, however, The story writers thought relating him to Mufasa would be more interesting; a threat within. This is why Scar and Mufasa differ so much; They weren't originally designed to be related.

Richard Curtis and Ben Elton were approached to write the film, but both turned it down as they were busy with projects of their own.

Several character names are based on Swahili words: Shenzi: Barbarous/Uncouth/Uncivilized/Savage Pumbaa: Ignorant/Lazy/Careless Sarabi: Mirage Rafiki: Comrade/Friend Simba: Lion/Courageous Warrior Mufasa: reportedly the name of the last king of the Bagada people, who were dispersed during the English colonization of Kenya. Nala: gift

Originally Mufasa was to never appear after his death, but producers felt Simba needed a reason to go back to pride rock so the spirit scene was made as a "to be or not to be" moment.

If you look closely at Zazu as Simba comes down to greet his subjects after the defeat of Scar, you can see his beak move, but no sound comes out. Originally he says "Your Majesty".