The Lion King: The new trailer has filled me with hope

Back in September 2016, when the “live-action” (it’s not live-action FYI) remake of 1994’s The Lion King was announced, I wrote a blog post voicing my concerns, but the trailer has settled these worries and filled me with hope, joy and excitement.

If you’ve read my previous post you will understand that the original Lion King is one of my favourite films of all time – I have so much nostalgia for it and it can make me cry in multiple places. It has stood the test of time – the story is really strong, the music kills me (The Circle of Life makes me cry without fail), the voice cast was superb and it still looks good.

So I was scared that Disney would ruin its legacy and my memory of the original with a remake, although I was reassured by director Jon Favreau, who nailed it with The Jungle Book, and the new voice cast which includes Donald Glover, Beyonce, Seth Rogan and a returning James Earl Jones.

But now I have high hopes. The trailer makes me feel like it will be extremely loyal, if not a shot for shot or word for word retelling, of the original. All the beats in the trailer are from the opening Pride Rock scene from the original (as illustrated in the tweet below) so it has calmed my worries that the story would be different or take some liberties. It might still do that, but I reckon it won’t. I reckon the story will be the same but the script will be different – particularly in the comedy dialogue between Timon and Pumba and the trio of hyenas.

Besides that, it is visually breathtaking. It claims to be photorealistic and it certainly is – the CGI is THAT jaw-dropping. It has been done before with The Jungle Book but seeing cute little cub Simba in his CGI form melted my heart – then The Circle of Life just drove that emotion home as well as the voiceover of Jones as Mufasa with his “everywhere the light touches is our kingdom” speech. I’ve watched the trailer twice and almost cried twice.

Before, I was worried, but now I’m not. The trailer has restored my faith and I’m now so excited to see it – I’m ready for it now tbh! It looks beautiful, will respect my beloved original and perhaps build upon it with some new comedic scenes and maybe some new music (thankfully with the original team of Hans Zimmer, Tim Rice and Elton John).

Rest assured, I will be first in line to see this and I will probably cry within the first five minutes. Who am I kidding? I will be bawling as soon as I hear “naaaaaaaaah sahwenya” (yes, this is how I pronounce it!)

The trailer and poster is below.

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