Archive from 06.20.03 to 08.09.2003

08.09.2003 Back to TLK3?

Arild Berg provides the following interesting observation:

I couldn't find anything about this on, so I just figured I'd alert you to this just in case nobody else has bothered to do so. I was just watching the recently released Scandinavian DVD version of The Jungle Book 2, and to my great surprise, among the "previews" (you know, the ones Disney always make you watch before the menu comes up) was an actual trailer for "The Lion King 3 - Hakuna Matata" (I guess this is the official title then, not TLK 1.5). New animation and everything. It consisted of footage from TLK (the _real_ TLK that is) with the silhouettes of Timon and Pumbaa popping up in front of it, talking about the movie. Then Timon picks up a remote control and fast-forwards to the part where they come in, and they get into a discussion (Pumbaa insists they have to watch the film from the beginning). Eventually Timon rewinds it and promises that they'll go all the way back to _before_ the beginning.

So it's TLK3 again, is it? Interesting.

08.08.2003 TLK DVD Insights

Jess Walzak forwards this article from IGN :

The Lion King looks and sounds incredible. This could very well be the animated equivalent of FotR EE. There will be multiple audio mixes, something Disney is calling the "enhanced home theater mix," which I'm betting is Dolby Digital EX. The extras will be great, particularly the new scene, called Morning Report, and a great outtake.

Apparently Disney was going to give Elton John's Can You Feel The Love Tonight to Timon and Pumbaa, until John saw an early cut of the movie and said to the producers "I can't imagine what were you thinking having Timon and Pumbaa sing that song." They quickly agreed and shifted the song to the two lions. The outtake will show the original pencil drawings and have the audio of the two singing the song, very badly, I might add.

08.05.2003 Finding Nemo takes the lead

It was bound to happen; TLK's box-office record has finally been beaten, by Finding Nemo .

This past weekend, domestic box office receipts for Disney/Pixar's Finding Nemo rose up another US$4.4 million, with totals now passing US$313 million. That makes Finding Nemo the highest-grossing animated feature film ever by about $200,000. The previous record has been held for almost a decade by another Disney feature -- The Lion King .

It's great news for Pixar Animation Studios, which also saw Finding Nemo open with the strongest weekend receipts ever for an animated movie -- $70.6 million. The $313 mark also puts the movie in the number one spot for the year.

Thanks to Leon Matt Thomsson for the tip.

08.04.2003 French DVD Packaging

According to, the French edition of the TLK DVD will be somewhat different from the one we get in the States:


The package on the right, using a red version of the excellent original movie poster , is the Exclusive Edition, which contains the Special Edition 2-disc set as well as a soundtrack CD.

Tip: Simba B

08.03.2003 DVD Extra Features Preview
Luke at has posted another page of screenshots taken from the TLK DVD. Tip: Simba B.
08.02.2003 TLK on Lizzie McGuire DVD

Sent by Simba B.: a review at of The Lizzie McGuire Movie DVD, which reportedly includes a sneak preview of the TLK Special Edition.

"We get a new trailer behind-the-scenes with Disney Channel's cast recording a new music video for "Circle of Life", plus some scenes of the DVD's features," says the reviewer, Gus Frank. He also includes two pages of screenshots , which are eyebrow-raising.

08.02.2003 Marketing Blitz

Jess Walzak forwards this piece of info from

Major Marketing Push Behind Lion King DVD

A full page ad in this week's Hollywood Reporter (p. 28 of the July 29-Aug.4 issue) gives us a glimpse at the Timon & Pumbaa's Virtual Safari feature and reveals that the Mouse House is backing up the October 7 release of "Disney's most requested DVD title" with a $150 million marketing campaign. That's more than the production budget for Treasure Planet or Pirates of the Caribbean! Simba is likely to keep roaring at the top of the all-time video sales chart for a long, long time...

07.31.2003  Golden Books revealed

The covers for the Golden Books " The Good Life " and " The Lion King 1 1/2 " are on display at the Random House website.

Thanks to Simba B. and

07.30.2003 More DVD Captures

Simba B. and Tanabi have both notified me of this:

Ultimate Disney has put together a 2-page set of captures previewing more Lion King DVD extra features, specifically the new "Circle of Life" music video performed by "The Disney Channel's Circle of Stars"--Hilary Duff, Christy Romano, A.J. Trauth, Orlando Brown, Tahj Mowry, Kyla Pratt, and Anneliese Van Der Pol.

07.22.2003 UK DVD Release Date

Via Simba B. - is reporting the release date for the Platinum Edition of TLK as 30 September, 2003.

07.20.2003 Finding Nemo Challenges the Throne

Jake Lipson writes with the following:

Pixar's "Finding Nemo" (distributed by Disney) surpassed the $300 million mark this weekend at the US box office. The only other animated feature in history to do that was Lion King. The total domestic gross thus far for Nemo is an estimated $303,796,000m vs. Lion King's $312,855,561m.* (The Lion King figure is the total gross from its two theatrical releases here in the U.S. in June and September of 1994 and does not include its IMAX re-release gross.) This makes Nemo the fastest animated feature to pass the $300m mark as it took Lion King the two releases combined to reach the mark whereas Nemo has accomplished this in just 52 days. It also seems increasingly likely that Nemo will surpass Lion King's total gross before the end of its run making it the #1 animated movie of all time.

(I figure a really angry Lion King fanatic - I am one but I'm not angry because I love Nemo too - might argue tthat ajusted for ticket price inflation Lion King would still win so this means nothing; however, if inflated, the #1 animated feature of all time is not Lion King nor Finding Nemo: rather, still Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. And you know as well as I do that when they look at how successful films are most Average Joe Six Packs will look at the list uninflated rather than inflated.)

Just thought it might be worth mentioning on your site that after 9 years Simba has found a true challenger for the throne in Nemo

07.20.2003 Almost a Star
Young musician Chelsey Forbess was nearly cast as the voice of Young Nala , according to this bio found by Simba B. Apparently the part was given to Niketa Calame only after Forbess had recorded her lines and the character had been designed based on her appearance, when the producers realized that her voice sounded too similar to Young Simba's (Jonathan Taylor Thomas). Bummer.
07.18.2003 Preorder News

Simba B. has learned the following:

MickeyMouseboy from's forum told me that The local Disney Stores have started taking preorders for The Lion King since the 15.

Luke from says:

"Disney will be running a Buy 3 Get 1 Free Promotion from September 9 through the end of December, similar to last year's. No word yet on what will be offered as a free selection, but shipping is $1.99 like last year."

He also has found a large image of the collector's DVD gift box.

07.14.2003 TLK On Wheels

For the 20th anniversary of the Dodge Caravan, Dodge and Disney will be doing a joint promotion centered on the TLK DVD release.

"Dodge and Disney are all about establishing an emotional connection to families, so this partnership was a natural for us," said Julie Roehm, Director, Dodge Communications. "The Caravan and 'The Lion King' are also the originals in their respective categories and have set the benchmarks that others now follow. It's the king of the minivans celebrating the king of the DVDs."

As with the "Monsters, Inc." advertising campaign, Dodge will integrate Lion King characters into unique broadcast, print and online creative in support of the Dodge Caravan and the release of "The Lion King: Special Edition" DVD. Advertising will break in late September. In addition, Lion King characters will also appear on the No. 9 and No. 19 Dodge Intrepid race cars of NASCAR drivers Bill Elliott and Jeremy Mayfield at Kansas Speedway, Oct. 3-5.

More on the TLK NASCAR designs, which feature Adult Simba, Timon, and Pumbaa on the hoods of the two cars can be found here . There are also die-cast toys of the cars, and a custom banner for the press release at

Thanks to Simba B. for the heads-up!

07.10.2003 Brother Bear Watch

For anyone who's interested in keeping tabs, the Chinese site has a page full of screenshots from the upcoming Disney film Brother Bear , due for release in November.

Thanks to Trish Heise for the link.

07.10.2003 DVD Menu Screenshots

Eight new screengrabs from the DVD menus are at .

07.02.2003 English "Morning Report" Lyrics
Tanabi sends the following transcription of the English lyrics from the "Morning Report" scene:

Zazu lyrics are in black
Mufasa lyrics are in red
Simba lyrics are in blue

Chimps are going ape, giraffes remain above it all
Elephants remember, though just what I can't recall
Crocodiles are snapping up fresh offers from the banks
Showed interest in my nest egg but I quickly said "No thanks!"
We haven't paid the hornbills and the vultures have a hunch
Not everyone invited will be coming back from lunch

This is the morning report
Gives you the long and the short
Every grunt, roar, and snort
Not a tale I distort
On the morning report

What are you doing son?
Let an old pro show you how it's done.

The buffalo have got a beef
About this season's grass
Stay low
Warthogs have been thwarted
to the ground
In attempts to save their gas
Okay, stay low to the ground, right... yeah...
Flamingoes in the pink and
Chasing secretary birds
Shh... not a sound
Saffron is this season's color
Seen in all the herds
Moving down the rank and file
Take it slow...
To near the bottom rung
Far too many beetles are
...and pounce!
Quite frankly in the dung

This is the morning report
Gives you the long and the short
Every grunt, roar, and snort
Not a tale I distort
On the morning report

06.28.2003 French "Morning Report" Video

Whoever doesn't want to spoil the surprise should skip this link [REMOVED]: a 2.7MB Windows Media video of the new "Morning Report" sequence. It's in French, but the gist of the scene is very clear; we now have an idea of its length, the staging, the style, and so on.

The animation quality looks extremely good, as does the directing-- though the art is "played straight", the style of humor is quite close to the playful "Just Can't Wait to be King" sequence. It's unclear how this will feel once it's woven into the pacing of the overall movie. Some of the staging and even a few animation frames appear taken directly from the original movie's corresponding scene.

Myself, I'm still lukewarm as to the scene's appropriateness for a song; it seems a little bit out of character for Zazu-- it plays up his role as a prima donna of the royal court, but it loses the easy, offhand, backgrounded nature of the stream of puns that makes up the content of the song. Yes, now we get to hear them more clearly, and we get to see more of Zazu's character (to say nothing of Simba's and even the gopher's); but it feels as though something has been lost from Mufasa's bored reaction to the news (finding his son's pouncing more important). On the other hand, maybe it's even more effective, having the thing Mufasa's getting bored with be a song rather than just a string of tedious one-liners. It makes it all the more embarrassing for Zazu.

Anyway-- thanks to all who sent me the link.

06.27.2003 TLK DVD Screen Captures
On its page for the TLK DVD, has posted a screenshot from the upcoming new "Morning Report" sequence, as well as an image of uncertain provenance showing "Timon & Pumbaa's All New Virtual Safaris", probably part of the DVD menu system.

The image from the movie sequence is very similar in staging to this one , suggesting that Zazu's theatrical, "on-stage" posture in the new still is part of the lead-in to the song before the "pouncing lesson" begins.
06.20.2003 New Name/Studio Unit: "DisneyToon Studios"

Walt Disney Television Animation (TVA) has split off a new animation unit, the same unit that produced Simba's Pride ; the new studio will carry the name "DisneyToon Studios", reports AWN .

Thanks to Tanabi for the tip!