Jon Favreau on making The Lion King

Filmmaker Jon Favreau feels The Lion King has become a deep part of our culture and says he felt a tremendous responsibility while re-imagining the world of Disney’s classic with the use of technology.

“It’s such a beloved property. Disney has had tremendous success with the original animated version and then the Broadway musical. I knew that I had to be very careful with it. I felt a tremendous responsibility not to screw it up,” Favreau said in a statement.

“I wanted to demonstrate that we could be respectful of the source material while bringing it to life using mind-blowing techniques and technologies,” he added.

The Jungle Book fame director Favreau has re-imagined the world of Disney’s 1994 classic to bring alive a live-action film. He has stayed true to the classic story of Simba and used pioneering filmmaking techniques to bring the iconic characters to the big screen in a whole new way.

It was a trip to Africa that pointed him in the direction of The Lion King.

“I went on a safari to Africa six months prior to first talking to Disney about doing this film,” recalled Favreau.

“I remember when a warthog ran by our safari vehicle, one of the people in our group started singing Hakuna Matata. And then when we saw lions up on a rock, they all said, ‘Oh, look, it looks like Lion King’. This story has become a frame of reference that everybody now knows and accepts.

“It pops up in music, on TV shows, in comedy routines, as part of sketches. It’s continually referenced. It’s such a deep part of our culture that it felt like there was a tremendous opportunity to build on that and to retell the story in a different medium.”

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