The live-action Lion King trailer is here and we got chills

Get ready for some intense nostalgia with this photorealistic CGI trailer for the Lion King remake.
Published November 23 2018
Updated November 23 2018

It’s been 25 years since the Circle of Life first moved us all, but seeing the sun rise over the Pride Lands in the new trailer for Disney’s Lion King remake brings you right back to those 1994 feels.

While widely known as the “live-action” Lion King, the film is mostly motion capture and photo-realistic CGI. Jon Favreau directs, following the success of his Oscar-winning CGI remake of The Jungle Book in 2016.

The film’s plot sticks close to the original. Donald Glover takes over as Simba, the heir to the Pride Lands and son of current king, Mufasa, again voiced by the authoritatively soothing baritone of James Earl Jones. Simba is forced into exile after his uncle, Scar, played here by 12 Year’s a Slave’s Chiwetel Ejiofor, engages in a little fratricide. Simba is joined by meerkat-warthog duo Timon and Pumba, Billy Eichner and Seth Rogan respectively, and his new lioness pal Nala, played by none other than Beyoncé Knowles-Carter, as he tries to make his way back home.

The cast also includes John Oliver, Keegan Michael-Key, Alfre Woodard and Eric Andre.

The trailer premiered with little warning during Thanksgiving’s Dallas Cowboys/Washington Redskins game and starts with a sunrise and herds of gazelles and elephants, among others, making their way to Pride Rock to witness the birth of their new prince. Hans Zimmer’s score kick-starts the familiarity as Mufasa echoes those famous words, “Everything the light touches is our kingdom,” and you know it’s coming.

A brief second of silence and it’s there. Like a shot of nostalgic adrenaline right to the heart, that irresistible sing-songy Zulu intro to the Circle of Life kicks in and you know you’re probably going to be hitting that replay button a few times.

The Lion King is set to be released July 19, 2019. It will join Tim Burton’s Dumbo and Guy Ritchie’s Aladdin in 2019 as Disney’s latest live-action remakes of classic animated films.

The Lion King has been a top earner for Disney, spawning multiple sequels, video games, 21-years-and-counting running musical and, of course, those wonderful Everything the light touches memes.

Contact Daniel Figueroa IV at Follow @danuscripts.