It’s sort of like The Lion King meets a David Attenborough special.

the lion king

The first proper trailer for Disney’s revamped version of The Lion King has arrived, and it’s hitting all the expected nostalgic sweet spots. Aesthetically, the new version, directed by Jon Favreau, looks like a mix of deft CGI and the sort of elegant wildlife footage that wouldn’t be out of place in a David Attenborough special. Which is to say: it looks really lovely.

A lot of realistic tone of this trailer means a lot of things have been completely reimagined for this version of the story, like the aesthetic of the villainous Scar (voiced by Chiwetel Ejiofor). In the 1994 film, the character was comically evil-looking, with a long black mane, yellow-green eyes, and a goatee that won’t quit. In Favreau’s dignified reimagining, he looks. . . like a lion, albeit a scrawny one with rangy, matted fur and a clipped ear. “Life’s not fair, is it, my little friend?” he says at the start of the trailer—a tweaked version of the first line Scar speaks aloud in the original film. “While some are born to feast, others spend their lives in the dark, begging for scraps.”

the lion king trailer

The trailer then hands the narration over to the just king Mufasa (voiced, once again, by the legendary James Earl Jones), who tells his son, Simba, “Everything you see sits together in a delicate balance.” He was so close to saying the “everything the light touches” line—but perhaps that’s for the next teaser. additionally hopefully within the next trailer? Audio of Beyoncé in character as Nala, whom we see briefly in this trailer, and grown-up Simba, voiced by Donald Glover.

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