The Lion King Live-Action Movie Casts Two MCU Stars as Nala and Rafiki

Over two decades have passed since The Lion King animation debuted on the big screen. With the animation still been tagged the best Disney animation, it’s no surprise that Disney has made it one of the list of movies that will be remade into a live-action film.

Last week, it was reported that Chiwetel Ejiofor is in talks to play Scar, And if he gets the deal, he will join other cast members like Donald Glover as Simba, James Earl-Jones as Mufasa, and John Oliver as Zazu. Now new reports see two extra actors currently in the Marvel Cinematic Universe join the ever-growing cast of The Lion King.

According to THR, Alfre Woodard has been selected to play Sarabi, Simba’s mom, in The Lion King. Madge Sinclair voiced the lioness in the 1994 animated movie. Woodard was seen last fall as Mariah Dillard, a.k.a. Black Mariah, on the Luke Cage TV series, who she’ll reprise in Season 2.
Following the news about Alfre Woodard, The Wrap reported that John Kani has been tapped to play Rafiki, the wise mandrill adviser of Pride Rock, in The Lion King. Kani briefly appeared in Captain America: Civil War last year as T’Chaka, the king of Wakanda. Kani will reprise the character in flashbacks for next February’s Black Panther.
Alfre Woodard and John Kani join a cast that includes Donald Glover as Simba, Billy Eichner as Timon, Seth Rogen as Pumbaa, John Oliver as Zazu and James Earl Jones reprising Mufasa. Chiwetel Ejiofor is also in talks to play Scar. Looking at this lineup, many of The Lion King‘s main characters are accounted for, but there are still a few key roles left to be cast. 
Beyonce was being eyed to voice Nala, but so far there’s been no word about whether or not she’s officially signed on. Then there’s the question of who will voice Shenzi, Banzai and Ed, Scar’s hyena goons.
The Lion King opens in theatres on July 19, 2019.
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