The Lion King prequel has found its “mane men.” You know, like a lion’s mane? Oh, be quiet. That was pure gold, and you know it. Anyway, it’s been revealed that Kelvin Harrison Jr. (Waves, Trial of the Chicago 7) and Aaron Pierre (The Underground Railroad) will lead the voice cast.
Barry Jenkins (Moonlight) is set to direct the film, which explores the mythology of the characters, including Mufasa’s origin story. According to reports, Harrison Jr. will voice a young Mufasa, while Pierre will be the voice of Taka, later known as the villain Scar. Additional casting is currently underway, with plenty of big names expected to be attached.
Just like Jon Favreau’s live-action original, Disney’s The Lion King prequel will use photorealistic animation technology to complete its look. The new project is being scripted by Jeff Nathanson, who penned the screenplay for Favreau’s take. Scoring the film is the legendary Hans Zimmer, Pharrell, and Succession’s Nicholas Britell.
Harrison Jr. recently completed work on the upcoming musical Cyrano. Joe Wright directs the film, which stars Peter Dinklage as Cyrano, Haley Bennett as Roxanne, Ben Mendelsohn as Dr. Guiche, Kelvin Harrison Jr. as Christian, and Bashir Salahuddin as Le Bret. Here’s a brief synopsis for the film: Too self-conscious to woo Roxanne himself, wordsmith Cyrano de Bergerac helps young Christian nab her heart through love letters.
As for Pierre, he can be seen in M. Night Shyamalan’s Old and as Caesar in Barry Jenkins’ The Underground Railroad. He’s also starred in episodes of Krypton and Britannia.
How do you feel about Disney making a prequel to The Lion King? Are you curious to see how Taka earned the name Scar? Are you ready to encounter younger versions of iconic characters? What will the soundtrack be like? It will be a while before we find out the answers to these questions. Until then, Hakuna Matata and so forth.