The new star-studded Lion King comes out today! A live-action version of the 1994 mega-hit this new film looks like it might just be one of the biggest blockbusters of the summer if not the entire year. In honor of the new release, we’re taking a look at some of the trivia from the original animated film, a look at its box office success, and a few of the lessons this movie taught us.
I Love Trivia
One of my favorite things about doing these recaps and movie throwbacks is going through and finding out all sorts of fun trivia. I was that nerdy kid who would watch a movie and then immediately rewatch it with the DVD commentary on. Now, in the wasteland of a house free of a DVD player, I will still watch a movie while reading the IMDB trivia. So here are some fun facts I discovered about The Lion King.
- The wildebeest stampede took Disney’s CG department approximately three years to animate.
- In early drafts, Scar was a rogue lion with no relation to Mufasa. Eventually, however, the story writers thought relating him to Mufasa would be more interesting, a threat within. This is why Scar and Mufasa differ so much; they weren’t originally designed to be related.
- Adult Simba’s mane was supposedly inspired by Jon Bon Jovi’s hair. (What!?!?!)
- Ultimately, more than 600 artists, animators, and technicians contributed to The Lion King over its lengthy production schedule.
A Box Office Smash
With so many movies having big openings it’s easy to forget how huge this movie was when it came out. Disney was newly on the upswing after a rough few years, but with critical and financial hits like “Beauty and The Beast” and “Aladdin,” the studio was ready to take it’s biggest swing. And boy did it pay off. Just a few highlights:
- The highest-grossing film of 1994 worldwide and the second-highest in the U.S. behind Forrest Gump
- This film held the record for being the highest-grossing animated film of all time until it was surpassed by Toy Story 3
- Grossed just under a billion dollars worldwide as of 2018
- Highest selling home video in history
Lion King Lessons
Well, certainly there’s a lot of lessons to unpack. From the carefree “Hakuna Matata” about not sweating the small stuff and the importance of being present to living up to one’s full potential and protecting the things that matter to you regardless of the cost. For me, one of the most important lessons was about family, not only the family your born into (no one wants an Uncle Scar, amiright?) but the family you make for yourself. Scared and unsure, Simba’s journey to the jungle following the death of his father could have been disastrous were it not for the friends he makes along the way. They teach him a different way of life, survival skills and ultimately support him when he returns to Pride Rock.
Circle of Friends
We’re so excited that an entirely new generation is going to get to experience this movie! We wanted to find a way for our WubbaNub families to celebrate this monumental film, so we’re offering a Lion Wub Cubs bundle featuring Little Lion and Baby Lion! Get a special pacifier for your little cub and then tag us on social media!