The 36-year-old ‘Halo’ hitmaker joined the cast of the upcoming live-action remake of the Disney animated classic as Nala – the love interest of Simba, who will be voiced by Donald Glover.
However, a source told the New York Daily News newspaper, that Sir Elton John – who provided the songs to the 1994 animation including ‘Circle of Life’ and ‘Can You Feel The Love Tonight’ – has agreed to a deal reportedly worth $13 million to rework his hit compositions.
The source said, “Elton is working with Disney on this new ‘Lion King’ project. They have reached an agreement to present some reworked versions of the classic hits and perhaps some new work. The songs will be thread into the storyline. It is unthinkable when you have Beyonce involved not to have her sing some of those iconic hits – and that means huge sales to a new generation.”
Elton, 70, won an Oscar for Best Original Song in 1995 for ‘Can You Feel The Love Tonight’ while other songs such as ‘Hakuna Matata’ and ‘Circle of Life’ were both nominated.
In the new movie, Chiwetel Ejiofor is set to play the villain Scar alongside Billy Eichner and Seth Rogen as Timon and Pumbaa respectively.
James Earl Jones will return to voice Mufasa, the same part he played in the original 1994 movie. Alfre Woodard will play Sarabi, John Oliver will voice Zazu and John Kani will star as wise baboon Rafiki.
‘Jungle Book’ filmmaker Jon Favreau is at the helm of the project, which is set for a July 2019 release. Favreau is already in pre-production with Jeff Nathanson writing the script.
‘The Lion King’ is just one of the live-action movies in the pipeline. ‘Dumbo’, ‘Mulan’ and ‘The Little Mermaid’ are also in the works. – BANG!