29 Things That The Lion King Remake Could Fill Its Extra 29 Minutes Of Footage With

Many questions in the form of a couple of suggestions.

One of the big questions fans have had with Disney’s CGI remake of The Lion King is what kind of new stuff we can expect. It’s a fair enough query since director Jon Favreau has said that the remake will honour all the big moments in the original film while adding in extra elements.

It seems like we’re getting more Lion King goodness than expected because the remake reportedly clocks in at 118 minutes, a full 29 minutes longer than the original animated film.

With so much more time for activities, we decided to hazard a guess at 29 things Disney could fill those extra 29 minutes with. This is important business and should definitely, 100% be taken seriously.

1. A backstory into Rafiki

We get that he’s a mandrill but, like, what’s his deal? Where did he come from? Why is he like a pseudo shaman to the lions?


2. Explaining Rafiki’s thing of smearing red plant stuff on the foreheads of lion cubs

Is it a tradition? A ceremonial ritual? Just something he likes to do?

3. Revealing the origins of Scar’s scar

It’s been bugging me for 25 years.

Must’ve been painful.

4. A backstory to the frostiness between Mufasa and Scar

Something went down between the two, surely. Probably ties into no.3.

5. Michelle Obama cameoing as Mufasa and Scar’s mother

One can hope.

6. Zazu’s daily routine

What does he do besides deliver reports to Mufasa and chaperoning lion cubs?

7. Mufasa doing some proper ruling

We’ve seen him lecture Simba, fight hyenas, and… that’s it actually.

8. More Sarabi

Need more time in her motherly presence.

9. A tour of Pride Rock

I still have no idea how Pride Rock works in terms of sleeping quarters, the nooks and crannies, and how Mufasa and Simba get to the top to see the sunrise.

10. An explanation of how far the Pride Lands go

“Everywhere the light touches” is a bit ambiguous.

11. Backstory into all the hyena animosity

Why so much hate?

12. The origins of Scar teaming up with the hyenas

Still not sure how this part of his grand Machiavellian plan to be king came to be.

13. Some reference to Captain America’s arse

Why not?

14. More Timon and Pumbaa

No explanation needed.

15. Montage of Simba growing up with Timon and Pumbaa

I’d be happy if they did a CGI version of the parenting Simba scenes from The Lion King 1 1/2.

16. New musical sequences

It’s a “musical film” so give us more musical with the film.

17. Nala’s backstory

There’s an intriguing gap between her childhood and her meeting Simba again as an adult.

18. A Beyoncé solo musical sequence.

See no.16 and no.17.

“Come home.”

19. The origins of the elephant graveyard

There’s a lot of dead elephants in that place and I want to know more about it.

20. What happens to Mufasa’s body?

Does it stay in the gorge? Did the lionesses retrieve it? Did scavengers come and, well, you know?

21. An explanation of where the stampede was going

Was there even a destination or were they just, you know, running for the sake of running because the hyenas forced them to?

22. Timon dressing up in more random costumes

The Hawaiian look was a start but I want more.

23. A look into Simba’s diet when living with Timon and Pumbaa

I don’t know much about lions but even I know they can’t survive on an all grub diet regardless of how slimy yet satisfying they are.

24. A look into what happens to Pride Rock when Simba leaves

Scar was handed a shiny kingdom and it turned to crap. How?

And why didn’t the large animals, like the elephants, revolt and just squish Scar? How could the kingdom just shrug their shoulders and accept Scar as their new dictator?

25. Fleshing out Simba and Nala’s relationship

I get they’re betrothed and all, but they’re completely different lions when they reconnect as adults so it would be nice to see them navigate that.

26. Donald Glover doing comedic bits as Simba goes through lion puberty

I want to see him bring back his inner Troy Barnes. It’s been a while.

More comedic Simba bits? YUHYEAH!

27. Graphic animal murder scenes

The remake looks like a NatGeo documentary anyway so might as well go all the way.

28. Rocket Raccoon and Chewbacca showing up and talking to Simba

About life and how corporate synergy across Disney IP is the REAL Circle of Life.

29. Blooper reel

It worked for Jackie Chan, Toy Story 2 and Monsters Inc. so why wouldn’t it work here?

“Alright, get another lion and let’s reset.”

Disney’s Casting Of Halle Bailey As Ariel Has Turned The Little Mermaid Into Black Panther, Thank God

The remake is turning into something important.

After rapid fire casting reveals for Ursula, Flounder and Scuttle for Disney’s upcoming live-action remake of The Little Mermaid, we finally have confirmation on who the titular mermaid will be.

Disney has announced that Ariel will be played by Halle Bailey, one half of the R&B duo Chloe x Halle. The film’s director, Rob Marshall, praised Halle and said that she “possesses that rare combination of spirit, heart, youth, innocence, and substance — plus a glorious singing voice” to be the perfect Ariel.

Halle responded to the casting news by sharing a gorgeous photo of herself as animated Ariel along with the caption “Dream come true…”

Halle is a bit of a newcomer to the film world but there’s no reason why she won’t nail the role. Disney cast newcomer Mena Massoud as Aladdin and that’s worked out really well for everyone, plus we already know Halle has a great voice so there’s no worry over whether she can belt out the tunes from Alan Menken and Lin-Manuel Miranda.

But beyond her talents, Halle’s casting is huge because it represents a big leap forward for diversity and representation.

By casting a black person as Ariel, it’s almost certain that Disney will also be looking for black actors to play supporting characters like King Triton (James Earl Jones, anyone?) and all of Ariel’s sisters. It’ll be weird and pretty unsavoury if Ariel is black and the rest of her family is white.

Ariel and Sisters

A large diverse cast could also have a trickle down effect on the overall tone of The Little Mermaid. It’s not a stretch to think that the movie could be Disney’s own version of Black Panther in representing and celebrating cultures beyond white people.

Halle’s casting is also something of an indicator of how Disney is tackling the narrative for this new version of The Little Mermaid. As good as the original animated film was, the “girl sacrifices everything to be with her crush” storyline is depressingly awful and doesn’t really set a good example for all the young girls.

Given how Disney have pushed to rewrite women’s roles in all its live-action remakes so far, we can be pretty confident that it will do something to flip The Little Mermaid‘s storyline on its head in a more empowering, inspirational way.

Diverse casting and empowering narratives FTW.

We’ve got a while to wait yet since the film will start production in 2020 and isn’t likely to come out until 2021, but hey, we’ve already waited this long so a couple of extra years is nothing.

With Halle’s casting, the pieces are falling into place for The Little Mermaid to be something important so Disney can take all the time they need if it means making a better film.

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