The Introduction

    Borrowed from The Lion King WWW Archive's FAQ

Welcome to The Lion King FAQ. For those readers who don't know, if that's possible, "The Lion King" is the biggest (as of September 1995) animated Disney film in history, and in the opinion of many, their best ever. Most people who haven't been living on Neptune for the last few years know what the plot of "The Lion King" is, but for those who need a refresher... here is the plot as found in the Film Notes, originally from the Buena Vista Productions website:

"The Lion King" follows the epic adventures of a young lion cub named Simba as he struggles to accept the responsibilities of adulthood and his destined role as king of the jungle. As a carefree cub, he "just can't wait to be king," and spends his days frolicking with his pal, Nala. His father, King Mufasa, the revered ruler of Pride Rock and the lands that surround it, teaches him about the "circle of life" -- the delicate balance of nature which bonds all animals together -- and cautions him to prepare for the day when he will be called upon to lead. Mufasa's evil brother, Scar, hopes that day will never arrive and schemes to do away with the king and Simba so that he can assume the throne for his own tyrannical purposes. He and his hyena henchmen -- Shenzi, Banzai and Ed -- lure Simba into the path of a wildebeest stampede in which Mufasa is killed trying to save his son.

Scar convinces Simba that he is responsible for his father's death and urges him to run far away from the Pride Lands and never return. A frightened and guilt-ridden Simba flees into exile where he is befriended by a wacky but warmhearted warthog named Pumbaa and his free-wheeling meerkat companion, Timon. Under the dubious guidance of this nature's odd couple, Simba adopts their "Hakuna Matata" (no worries) attitude towards life, living on a diet of bugs and taking things one day at a time. The cub matures into a young adult and is able to put his past behind him until a beautiful young lioness, who turns out to be his childhood friend Nala, arrives on the scene. She tells him of the hard times and suffering that have come to the Pride Lands under Scar's reign and beseeches him to take his place as king. With the help of Rafiki, a wise shaman baboon, Simba realizes that his father's spirit lives on in him and that he must accept the responsibility of his destined role. In a climactic battle with his uncle and an army of hyenas, Simba attempts to reclaim his rightful place in the "circle of life."

Some statistics: "The Lion King" was released twice in the US, once on June 24, 1994, and again on November 18, 1994. From those two running times it grossed some $313 million in the box office alone, placing it fifth on the list of high-earning films of all time (after E.T., Jurassic Park, Forrest Gump, and Star Wars). Considering it cost only $40 million to produce, this is quite remarkable.

A few abbreviations will be used in this FAQ. The most common, pretty clearly, will be TLK: "The Lion King." Others are:

CoL:      "Circle of Life"
IJCWtbK:  "I Just Can't Wait to be King"
HM:       "Hakuna Matata"
CYFtLT:   "Can You Feel the Love Tonight?"
TLK:      The Lion King
SP:       Simba's Pride
RotPL:    Rhythm of the Pride Lands
CotPL:    Chronicles of the Pride Lands

The Characters

Who Are The Stars?

There is a seperate page about the characters from The Lion King, Simba's Pride, and Hakuna Matata here.

What IS Timon, Anyway?

  • Simba, Nala, Mufasa, Scar, Sarabi, Sarafina, Kiara, Kovu, Zira, Vitani, and Nuka are all lions.
  • Rafiki is a mandrill (he's usually referred to as a baboon, but specifically he's a mandrill-- although one with a tail, which normally they don't have).
  • Timon, Ma, and Uncle Max are meerkats, small (6" tall) prairie-dog-like burrowing creatures of South Africa.
  • Pumbaa is a warthog.
  • Zazu is a hornbill.
  • Shenzi, Banzai, and Ed are hyenas.

What's That Cub's Name / What About The Sequel?

At the very end, Rafiki presents a new cub, Simba's and Nala's, to the expectant crowd of animals just as he had earlier with Simba himself. This new cub is Kiara, their daughter and heiress to Pride Rock. This sets the stage for the plot of "Simba's Pride", the direct-to-video sequel originally released on October 27, 1998.

Full synopses of the plot and casting is available at http://www.lionking.org/sequels/TLK2/, as well as at many other "Simba's Pride" websites.

While Disney has confirmed this is Kiara, it has been pointed out by fans that not only are the presentations at the end of TLK and at the start of SP different, but the cubs don't look alike. This has led some fans to suggest that they are actually two different cubs, which there are many essays about. Click here to read one such essay.

Who's Nala's Father?

On June 14, 2004, the creators of The Lion King gathered in Glendale, CA, for a Tenth Anniversary Panel discussion, where Brian Tiemann asked directors Rob Minkoff and Roger Allers point-blank the answer to the foregoing question. Minkoff's immediate response was "Roger [Allers]"; but after further discussion, both directors acknowledged that Nala's father, while still not known definitively, was either Scar or Mufasa.

Characters' Names

  • Simba: Lion.
  • Nala: Gift.
  • Sarabi: Mirage.
  • Rafiki: Friend.
  • Pumbaa: Simpleton.
  • Shenzi: Uncouth.
  • Banzai: Skulk, Lurk.
  • Sarafina: Bright Star.
  • Kovu: Scar.
  • Zira: Hate.
  • Vitani: At War, In War.
  • Nuka: Smell, Stink.

  • The remaining names -- Mufasa, Scar, Timon, Zazu, Ed, Kiara, and Max -- are all proper names. Mufasa was reportedly the name of the last king of the Bagada people, who were dispersed during the English colonization of Kenya.
For more information, there is a seperate page about the characters from The Lion King, Simba's Pride, and Hakuna Matata here.

The Kupotea

Name Origins

The name 'Kupotea' is a Swahili word meaning 'To Get Lost'. It was chosen out-of-character in my first roleplaying scene with Vikali, Balana, and Tangaza because it happened to be the perfect name - Vikali got lost and so her pride was chosen to be named after the act. In The Lion King universe however, it was chosen jointly by Uhodari and Naima when they first stumbled across the lionless grasslands, after leaving their respective prides and becoming mates.

Doesn't It Sounds Like...?

It was only after several weeks of using the name when it occured to me that the name of Vikali's old pride sounds surprisingly like 'Cup o' (of) Tea'. This is especially the case of you have just looked at the name 'Kupotea' for the first time. The fact it resembles the words 'Cup of Tea' is completely coincidental.

Why Isn't Msaada's Pride Added To The Kupotea Page?

There's a very simple reason - I can't think of how to do it without overcrowding things. Part of me wants to keep things simple, another part I want it to keep only with Vikali's family, then yet another part of me is thinking that if I add all the lions, the page'll be too cluttered for comfort.

How Do You Pronounce...?

Njaa's Pride
  • Uhodari: Oo-ho-dah-ree.
  • Naima: Nay-mah.
  • Nadhifu: Nad-hee-foo.
  • Mahubi: Mah-hoo-bee.
  • Kubwa: Cub-wah.
  • Utamu: Oo-tah-moo.
  • Njaa: Nuh-jaa.
  • Jaburu: Jah-boo-roo.
  • Afnu: Aff-noo.
  • Nusara: Noo-saa-rah.
  • Ujinga: Yuu-jin-gah.
  • Ngulozi: Nuh-guh-low-zee.
Msaada's Pride
  • Bayana: Bah-yah-na.
  • Msaada: Muh-saa-dah.
  • Kimajo: Kim-ah-jo.
  • Kipazi: Ke-pah-zee.
  • Umivu: Oo-me-voo.
  • Saiha: Say-hah.
  • Chanua: Chan-yu-ah.
  • Epsi: Ep-see.
  • Kupotea: Kuh-po-tee.
  • Nabana: Nah-bah-nuh.
  • Vikali: Ve-kah-lee.

Characters' Names

Following is a list of what the characters' names mean in the Swahili language.

Njaa's Pride
  • Uhodari: Bravery, Courage, Prowess.
  • Naima: Joy, Elation.
  • Nadhifu: Smart, Tidy.
  • Kubwa: Large, Great.
  • Utamu: Sweetness.
  • Njaa: Appetite.
  • Ujinga: Ignorance.
Msaada's Pride
  • Bayana: Clarity, Certainty.
  • Msaada: Help, Aid.
  • Umivu: Ache, Pain.
  • Chanua: Flower, Blossom.
  • Nabana: I Crush.
  • Vikali: They Wild.

The remaining names -- Mahubi, Jaburu, Afnu, Nusara, Ngulozi, Kimajo, Kipazi, Saiha, Epsi -- are names all inspired or intended to sound East African, though they are not actual Swahili words.

The Lioness Herself

Where Does She Live?

Vikali lives in the Kopje Valley as member of the pride there. It lies just east of the Pride Lands (also known as the Tsavo Lands), where it is ruled by the Lion King Mzohari.

How Come She Doesn't Know Who Her Real Father Is?

The courtship of Vikali's parents, Nadhifu and Utamu, was kept secret from the Kupotea Pride and only acted upon in private. Every time her lover came over, Utamu would send Epsi out on one errand or the other, until it almost became routine and the swallow accepted it. After Kubwa died, the real parents of Vikali thought it would be a disrespect to his name to come out about their love so early, so planned to wait before revealing it. However, this was dashed when their cub disappeared into the northern savannah, where Nadhifu had to stay back at the pride and remain seperated from the ones he loved while Utamu went searching for their daughter.

After re-uniting with Vikali, Utamu had avoided talking about her daughter's father until their last day together, when the cub enquired about him. While the juvenile lioness had already been told that Kubwa was her father, Utamu managed to skirt mentioning names. But as Vikali went out to hunt dinner for them, she decided that when her girl returns, she will tell her. Sadly, when her daughter returned, she had passed on due to a lack of food and water among other things, but the most prominant one being the terrible injury she received which near immobilized her.

When Nadhifu arrived at Kopje Valley, he intended to tell his daughter the truth when they returned to the Kupotea Grasslands, but due to his less-than-tactful methods for trying to bring her back, he ended up assaulting several members of Vikali's new pride and getting himself killed as such. No one alive, be it four-legged, winged, or otherwise knows now of the truth about Vikali, of the love between the unlikely lovers, Nadhifu and Utamu.

Adoptive Panther Family?

Vikali has strong ties with the leopards. It all began back when she was a juvenile and discovered a young, abandoned cub by the name of Kousho up at the western border of Kopje Valley. With a little persuasion of the pridal adults, Vikali was allowed to take partial care of the young male, whom she adopted as her little brother. Shortly afterwards, following a nasty conflict with an older cheetah, Kousho was found by the pantheress Hazina, who happened to be passing through at this point. She cleaned the cub's wounds, then fed and gave him water before allowing him to curl up in her forelegs. Before long, Kousho asked her if he could adopt her as a mother. Mere days after, the cub's believed-to-be-dead brother Kureha turned up in the valley, then following a brief spat, settled in as one of Hazina's adopted sons. The trio, following a talking to with King Mzohari, travelled off to live in the savannah, while Hazina was heavily pregnant with the panther Sahi's cubs.

Being the older of the brothers, Kureha had reached adolesence a little earlier than Kousho and had been so for over a moon when Hazina gave birth, even succeeding in defeating Sahi when he threatened the female. Three cubs were born: two females, Nguli and Nusa, and one male, Ingari. Not more than a dozen suns had passed when one day, walking out in the savannah with Hazina, Kureha professed his love for her, that he never saw her as a mother figure but something much more. Bashfully, she admitted likewise thoughts about him and together they sealed their love with a pantherine kiss. He thusly adopted her cubs as his own and Kousho was moved to the position of being Hazina's brother-in-rite.

Below is a chart showing the adoptive panther family tree. Note that the only true, blood relation on this tree is Kureha and Kousho being siblings. The rest of the details are entirely of how they stand in the adoptive family.

                 ?-+-?                    ?-+-?               Doppo-+-Natsue
                   |               ---------+---------         m(p) | f(p)
                   |               |        |        |              |
                  f|(p)           m|(p)    f|(li)   m|(p)          f|(le)
                 Hazina----+----Kureha    Vikali   Kousho----+----Kosue
               ------------+------------                     |
               |       |       |       |                     | 
              f|(p)   f|(p)   m|(p)   m|(c)                 f|(c)     
             Nguli    Nusa   Ingari   Talo                 Naima

 m   - Male
 f   - Female
(c)  - Cheetah
(le) - Leopardess
(li) - Lioness
(p)  - Panther(ess)

How Long Do You Spend On TLK Muck As Her?

One average, about three days a week (seventy-two hours), but for the majority of the part I arrive earlier than a lot of my fellow RPers, so I'm probably idle (ish) for about fifteen of those hours. During the summer holidays (vacation to any people from the States here!), I usually spend a good deal longer online than I do during the rest of the year, with perhaps the exception of Yule. By rule, I turn on TLK Muck when the computer goes on, so I'm there if any friends or roleplayers I'm planning to meet with come online. This is so they know I am there and so I can offer my assistance as a Helpstaff if need be; I don't actually spend a whole three days and twenty hours a week roleplaying. My longest ever connection time follows (and even I admit it is a bit ridiculous). I should note that week that Kousho had several days off, which led to me staying up rather late to play with him - five-six in the morning late.

Player:Vikali_________________|_2008, week 30__Contimes_1.1___
07/27|1           AM      1 1 |1         PM        1 1 | Total
 Wed |          XXXXXXX*X*X XX|XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX       |14h 30m
 Thu |        XXXXXXXXXX*XX   | XX XXXXXXXXXXXXXX      |14h 15m
 Sat |            XX XXXXXXXXX|XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX*     |14h 45m
08/02|  *=15m  X=30m                       Week Total|4d 21h 0m

May I use Vikali In My...?

It depends entirely on what she would be used for and what role she would play. For example, if she were to be used in fan art, factors upon whether or not I okay it would include: where she is, what she is doing, who she is interacting with (if any). In methods of writing such as Fan Fiction and Stories, I would need to see a rough draft of the script and/or hear the author's plans for it. Overall, the Copyrights Page apply to all queries of such a nature. Requests to depict her in any sexually explicit manners whether in art or writing will be declined.

The Website

How Often Do You Update The Site?

When I get the chance! If I've done an image gallery from one of the Lion King films, I'll upload it straight away. If I take a picture (or manipulate one) for use in the Miscellaneous Image Gallery, then I'll upload that there and then. If the item I have finished are lyrics, then usually I will finish the category they are from (or a reasonable section of them) off before uploading. Stories from the Kupotea, Reference pages, and the like I put up as soon as they are done. The Kupotea page I update when ideas come to mind, or after a brainstorming session with Kousho. For small, trivial things around site (spelling mistakes, minor corrections), I correct them straight away and upload without mentioning them in the logs. Aside from minor corrections, I note every upload and edit to the site in the Update Log.

So What's With Vitani's Den?

Due to popular demand, I decided to create a subsidiary or sister site of Vikali's Kopje, devoted entirely to the lioness Vitani from Simba's Pride called Vitani's Den. While I'm not overly massively hyperventilates-when-she-comes-on-screen Vitani fan, I do like the character to a certain degree, so have made this for two friends in particular who are big fans of hers - Kousho and Kosue.

Film Comments?

In the screenshot galleries for Simba's Pride, I have a comment following each picture (a further explanation is available here), but this will not be the way for every film. Please see below for the list of what sort of comments each film will be receiving.

The Lion King
  - Serious, sticking to the characters' roles, not making fun of them.
The Lion King 2: Simba's Pride
  - Not always serious, mostly attempting to make light-hearted fun at the characters.
The Lion King 1/2: Hakuna Matata
  - No comments.

Why Are You So Mean About Kiara/Simba's Pride?

I'm sure many Kiara fans are thinking this, if they have seen my Simba's Pride galleries. When there's a picture of the princess in it, I sometimes make the odd comment about her being ditzy, or stupid, or something similar. All of the Simba's Pride galleries poke fun at most of the characters, noticably Kiara. I should note that the comments in the second film's galleries are intended to be amusing rather than serious, and though I seem to pick on Kiara a lot, she is one of my favourite characters in that movie. She's very nice, has a beautiful voice (as an adult), and a fantastic personality. My sincere apologies to anyone who is offended by any of the comments and will change one if asked to.

What Did You Use To Create Vikali's Kopje?

I started off with next to no knowledge of HTML and self-taught myself, mostly using W3Schools.com's HTML section to learn as I go along. The entire code is written in raw HTML (and sometimes Javascript) code in Notepad. The pictures are processed using GIMP (freeware and in my opinion, better than Photoshop). The stills from The Lion King films have been taken using Nero ShowTime Essentials.

This Link Isn't Working...

Please send me a message, either through email or by filling out the form on this page, containing the information of which link and what page it was on, and I'll get to sorting it out. :)

The Credits

Who Did The Voices?

Nearly all the voices in TLK were done by notable vocalists, already famous for their work in big-screen productions or Broadway. Below is a list of who voiced who in The Lion King trilogy.
  • Simba (cub): Jonathan Taylor Thomas.
  • Simba (adolescent): Matt Weinberg.
  • Simba (adult): Matthew Broderick.
  • Mufasa: James Earl Jones.
  • Nala (cub): Niketa Calame
  • Nala (adult): Moira Kelly
  • Scar: Jeremy Irons.
  • Zazu: Rowan Atkinson in The Lion King, and Edward Hibbert in the sequels.
  • Rafiki: Robert Guillaume.
  • Timon: Nathan Lane.
  • Pumbaa: Ernie Sabella.
  • Shenzi: Whoopi Goldberg.
  • Banzai: Cheech Marin.
  • Ed: Jim Cummings.
  • Sarabi: Madge Sinclair.
  • Sarafina: Zoe Leader.
  • Kiara (cub): Michelle Horn.
  • Kiara (adult): Neve Cambell.
  • Kovu (cub): Ryan O'Donohue.
  • Kovu (adult): Jason Marsden.
  • Zira: Susan Pleshette.
  • Vitani (cub): Lacy Chabert.
  • Vitani (adult): Jennifer Lien.
  • Nuka: Andy Dick.
  • Ma: Julie Kavner.
  • Uncle Max: Jerry Stiller.

Who Were The Singers?

Below is a list of who sung whose part in The Lion King trilogy.
  • Simba (cub): Jason Weaver in I Just Can't Wait to be King, and Evan Saucedo in The Morning Report.
  • Simba (adult): Joseph Williams in The Lion King, and Cam Clarke in Simba's Pride.
  • Nala (cub): Lauru Williams.
  • Nala (adult): Sally Dworsky .
  • Scar: Jeremy Irons, and Jim Cummings for the end chorus of Be Prepared.
  • Zazu: Rowan Atkinson in I Just Can't Wait tobe King, and Jeff Bennett in The Morning Report.
  • Rafiki: Robert Guillaume.
  • Timon: Nathan Lane.
  • Pumbaa: Ernie Sabella.
  • Shenzi: Whoopi Goldberg.
  • Banzai: Cheech Marin.
  • Ed: Jim Cummings.
  • Kiara (cub): Charity Sanoy.
  • Kiara (adult): Liz Callaway.
  • Kovu (adult): Gene Miller.
  • Zira: Susan Pleshette.
  • Vitani (cub): Crysta Macalush.
  • Nuka: Andy Dick.

Who Was In The Original Broadway Production?

Below is a list of who played who in The Lion King on Broadway's original cast.
  • Simba (cub): Scott Irby-Ranniar.
  • Simba (adult): Jason Raize.
  • Mufasa: Samuel Wright.
  • Nala (cub): Kajuana Shuford.
  • Nala (adult): Heather Headley.
  • Scar: John Vickery.
  • Zazu: Geoff Hoyle.
  • Rafiki: Tsidii le Loka.
  • Timon: Max Casella.
  • Pumbaa: Tom Robbins.
  • Shenzi: Tracy Nicole Chapman.
  • Banzai: Stanley Wayne Mathis.
  • Ed: Kevin Cahoon.
  • Sarabi: Gina Breedlove.

Who Was In The 2007 London Production?

Below is a list of who played who in the 2007 casting for The Lion King musical at the Lyceum Theatre, London.
  • Simba (cub): Job Angus, Clint Easton, Kuan Frye, Idriss Kargbo, Lee Simmonds.
  • Simba (adult): Brian Temba.
  • Mufasa: Lloyd Notice.
  • Nala (cub): Sadhbha Bolger, Leila Jassal, Sofia Mangar, Leah Orcan, Shyanne Sanders,
  • Nala (adult): Alexia Khadime.
  • Scar: James Simmons.
  • Zazu: Eric Mallett.
  • Rafiki: Brown Lindiwe Mkhize.
  • Timon: Nick Mercer.
  • Pumbaa: Keith Bookman.
  • Shenzi: Allyson Addo.
  • Banzai: Gary Forbes.
  • Ed: Mark Sangster.
  • Sarabi: Vicky Ekanoye.

Who Is In The 2008 London Production?

Below is a list of who played who in the 2008 casting for The Lion King musical at the Lyceum Theatre, London.
  • Simba (cub): Daniel Anthony, Kuan Frye, Shakur Gabbidon-Williams, Idriss Kargbo, Myles-Jordan Senior-Campbell.
  • Simba (adult): Andile Gumbi.
  • Mufasa: Shaun Escoffery.
  • Nala (cub): Madeline Castrey, Aaliyah Harry, Leila Jassal, Natalie Kasanga, Leah Orcan,
  • Nala (adult): Gloria Onitiri.
  • Scar: George Asprey.
  • Zazu: Cameron Pow.
  • Rafiki: Brown Lindiwe Mkhize.
  • Timon: Nick Mercer.
  • Pumbaa: Keith Bookman.
  • Shenzi: Allyson Addo.
  • Banzai: Gary Forbes.
  • Ed: Mark Sangster.
  • Sarabi: Vicky Ekanoye.

Who Was In The 2009 London Production?

Below is a list of who played who in the 2009 casting for The Lion King musical at the Lyceum Theatre, London.
  • Simba (cub): Keenan Munn Francis, Alois Mangwende, Bernard Mensah, Thabani Miles.
  • Simba (adult): Andile Gumbi.
  • Mufasa: Shaun Escoffery.
  • Nala (cub): Sky Hutchinson, Alyda Miller, Shakira Simpson, Justine Smart.
  • Nala (adult): Gloria Onitiri.
  • Scar: George Asprey.
  • Zazu: Stephen Matthews
  • Rafiki: Brown Lindiwe Mkhize.
  • Timon: Nick Mercer.
  • Pumbaa: Keith Bookman.
  • Shenzi: Allyson Addo.
  • Banzai: Gary Forbes.
  • Ed: Mark Sangster.
  • Sarabi: Natasha Jayetileke.

Who Is In The 2010 London Production?

Below is a list of who is playing who in the 2010 casting for The Lion King musical at the Lyceum Theatre, London.
  • Simba (cub): Samuel Dagunduro, Adam Sali, Keenan Munn Francis, Bernard Mensah.
  • Simba (adult): Andile Gumbi.
  • Mufasa: Shaun Escoffery.
  • Nala (cub): Kyra-Imani Bitaye-Shepherd, Anuli Changa, Deja Linton, Alyda Miller.
  • Nala (adult): Gloria Onitiri.
  • Scar: George Asprey.
  • Zazu: Stephen Matthews
  • Rafiki: Brown Lindiwe Mkhize.
  • Timon: Nick Mercer.
  • Pumbaa: Keith Bookman.
  • Shenzi: Allyson Addo.
  • Banzai: Gary Forbes.
  • Ed: Mark Sangster.
  • Sarabi: Natasha Jayetileke.

Who Is Your Favourite Lion King Musical Cast?

Below is a list and description of my favourite actors to perform in The Lion King musical at the Lyceum Theatre, London.
  • Simba: Andile Gumbi, 2008-2010
    This time around, Andile Gumbi played the adult Simba. What made his role most outstanding is that his accent is quite clearly east African in origin, so that when he spoke, it seemed to blend so perfectly in with the Serengeti setting of the story.

  • Cub Simba: Clint Easton, 2007
    Let's face it, the cub roles are always tricky ones. But Clint Easton pulled it off. While no cub Simba could match their film counterpart, he certainly did a good job as acting and played a very credible role.

  • Mufasa: Shaun Escoffery, 2008-2010
    Shaun Escoffery was cast as Mufasa, and I doubt there could have been a finer choice. A superb actor who delivered his lines flawlessly, he not only performed brilliantly, but sounded the British equivilant to James Earl Jones.

  • Nala: Gloria Onitiri, 2008-2010
    From the moment she arrive on the stage in The Madness of King Scar, Gloria Onitiri took my breath away. Like Mufasa in that same casting, she sounded exactly like Nala did in The Lion King, and reached the highest notes of Shadowland effortlessly.

  • Cub Nala: Leah Orcan, 2008
    Oh wow. Just... wow. During the interval, I had to take a moment to sit and think about whether I prefered the film's cub Nala or Leah Orcan. That's how good she was. She was even so good that she made me wish Nala had sung more songs!

  • Scar: George Asprey, 2008-2010
    After seeing Simmons in 2007, I thought that no one could be a better Scar than he could. Then came along George Asprey. Oh boy. As Jeremy Irons is British, I don't imagine finding a similar sounding actor is that hard. But what amazes me is how, during the 2007 and 2008 productions, Disney's choices for this crucial role have been so fabulous. Like Simmons, Asprey's presence dominates the stage in a way that somehow doesn't shadow the other actors. And with slow, sadistic satisfaction, he delivered the most gut dropping line in the whole production with enough force that sent goose pimples rippling across my arms ~ "Long live the king."

  • Zazu: Jeff Bennet, 2007
    With the Zazu's I have seen (Jeff Bennet in 2007 and Cameron Pow in 2008), they are so very much alike that I couldn't really tell much apart from them. Though the one thing I remember definitively is that I prefered Bennet's singing.

  • Rafiki: Brown Lindiwe Mkhize, 2007-2010
    Brown Lindiwe Mkhize. A complicated name, a brillaint actress. She played the role of the eccentric pridal shaman perfectly and with her strong voice, delivered some of the most powerful songs in the production.

  • Timon: Nick Mercer, 2007-2010
    Now before I go any further, I should warn that I generally don't like Timon. Not that I hate him, but I am a bit indifferent to him as a character. But regardless of my personal feeling towards the character, Nick Mercer is great in the role of the fast-talking meerkat.

  • Pumbaa: Keith Bookman, 2007-2010
    Like Timon, Pumbaa is certainly not my favourite character. But I do have a certain, occasional softness for him. Occasionally. Keith Bookman is very well suited as the flatulent warthog and, as seen during Hakuna Matata, obviously loves his role.

  • Shenzi: Allyon Addo, 2007(-2010)
    Shenzi is a character in my Top Five list. She's a hyena with attitude, and a haircut to match. For some strange, her distinctive accent was distinctly different when I went to see the production in September 2008, which means Allyson Addo's uncannily Whoopi-esque performance of 2007 is my favoured one.

  • Banzai: Gary Forbes, 2007(-2010)
    While not as loved as Shenzi in my books, Banzai is still a hyena, and is partially responsible for bringing such a grin to my muzzle upon seeing them on stage. For some strange, his distinctive accent was mysteriously absent when I went to see the production in September 2008, which means Gary Forbes' uncannily Cheech-esque performance of 2007 is my favoured one.

  • Ed: Mark Sangster, 2007-2010
    Ed doesn't speak. Per se. He makes noises. But when he makes noises, he is very good at them, and is good at keeping to the characer. Therefore, while unable to favour either performance of the wonderful Mark Sangster, I will favour both.

  • Sarabi: Vicky Ekanoye, 2007-2008
    Sarabi has a very small role, sadly, as in the film. Yet in the productions I've seen so far, Vicky Ekanoye plays the royal mother very aptly, possessing a fitting regal air about her.

  • Overall: 2007 Production The first time you see something has the biggest impression upon you. In this case, when I went up to see The Lion King Musical for the first time in December 2007... words fail to describe how fantastic it was. During the interval, I remained sat in my seat, a big grin plastered over my face. I believe I may have slightly scared the poor companions whom accompanied me. After it had finished, I was quite giddy high for a further two hours. That was my favourite event of the whole year, and I shall remember it always.

Based off and some content borrowed from The Lion King WWW Archive's FAQ