The latest in Disney’s line of ‘live-action’ remakes has held its spot at the top of the box office for another week, rapidly taking its global haul close to $1 billion already.
Of course, although The Lion King is thought of as ‘live-action’, it is a computer-animated, digitally-rendered production; based on the 1990s 2D animation.
But there’s one shot – and one shot only – that is completely real.
Director Jon Favreau took to Instagram over the weekend to reveal exactly which frame is not digitally rendered.
It’s the very first one; and the one that begins The Circle of Life.
Favreau captioned his still: “This is the only real shot in #TheLionKing.
“There are 1490 rendered shots created by animators and CG artists.
“I slipped in one single shot that we actually photographed in Africa to see if anyone would notice.
“It is the first shot of the movie that begins The Circle of Life.”
The Lion King struggled with critics, and is currently rated “rotten” on review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes – with an approval score of just 53%.
The critics’ consensus reads: “While it can take pride in its visual achievements,The Lion King is a by-the-numbers retelling that lacks the energy and heart that made the original so beloved – though for some fans that may just be enough.”
Its audience score is much better: 88% on Rotten Tomatoes, and A on CinemaScore.
The Disney remakes aren’t slowing down yet, either: a new version of The Lady and the Tramp is up next, and it’ll land on Disney’s streaming service Disney+.
Mulan is the next one to be released theatrically; due on release in early 2020. The first trailer for that has already left most fans impressed.
Production on The Little Mermaid is also expected to commence early next year, with Halle Bailey playing Ariel.
The Lion King is out now.