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The Lion King Cartoon Movie - Information and Facts

Updated on March 30, 2011

Simba and Kimba

Simba and Kimba
Simba and Kimba

Lion King Animated Film Fun Facts

Lion King is the 6th highest grossing animated film and the highest grossing 2D animated film in the United States. It is also the first animated feature that is completely made at Disney Studios in Florida.

When the film was released, soon there was a stir in Japan. The Lion King film was very similar to the anime series ‘Kimba the White Lion’. First, you can notice that there is similarity in names (Kimba and Simba). Both of them had a baboon as a shaman. Not only that, both also had an evil uncle – ‘Claw’ in the series and ‘Scar’ in the movie – as well as henchman hyenas. And then plus a pose by a king on a rock (see pic on the right).

Some of the characters were given their names along with meanings, for example: Simba means lions in Swahili, Pumba means foolish or dull-witted in Swahili, one of the Hyenas named Shenzi means uncivilized, barbaric or savage in Swahili, Rafiki means friend, Nala means Gift etc.

Simba and Scar

Simba and Scar
Simba and Scar

Lion King Character Voices

When Rafiki went looking for Simba in the jungle, he was singing “Thank you very much for the squashed banana, you are a baboon and i am not” – Asante: thank you, Sana: very, much (Swahili) – Asante Sana, squash banana Wewe Nugu, Meme Apana.

Madge Sinclair (the voice of Queen Sarabi) and James Earl Jones (the voice of King Mufasa) played the King and Queen in Coming To America (1998 film).

“You are so weird!” says Simba to his uncle and Scar replied “You have no idea” – this is the same reply that Jeremy Irons (the voice of Scar) used in Reversal of Fortune (1990 film).

The Lion King

The Lion King
The Lion King

Pictures and Sketches

At the confrontation between Simba and Scar towards the end of the story, Scar pointed up and the camera panned up to reveal hundreds of Hyena on the rocks above. You can notice that one of the Hyena in the middle is actually the silhouette of a Schnauser.

Nala’s eyes change randomly from green to blue, and blue to green.

The PAL version of the Lion King film (Phase Alternating Line, the UK television color system) contains over 127,500 pictures or frames. If you are watching the film, you are actually seeing 25 frames per second. Each one had to be drawn out properly so that it was nearly identical to the previous one.

It has been said that if one computer and one man are used to make the original film of Lion King, it would have taken over 10 years to make it.

The creators of the film spent 2 weeks on safari in Kenya before they worked on The Lion King. They were studying how real lions live and behave. They took photos and made sketches of playful cubs to create young Simba and Nala. They even brought a baboon, a lion and some vultures to the studio in order to study their behaviors.

The Lion King was considered a “small” movie by some people at the studio, so the animators and creators working on it referred to themselves as the “B Team”. Instead some of them wanted to work on Pocahontas – the “big” movie that “A Team” was working on.


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    • Robwrite profile image

      Rob 6 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY

      Very well done hub. Lots of great facts. I wrote a hub myself on the controversy about Kimba the White Lion. You've done a nice job giving us a behind the scenes look at the film.

      Good job,


    • Stevennix2001 profile image

      Steven Escareno 6 years ago

      Wow, your hub is chalked full of facts about this movie, as I had no idea that the Lion King was held a lot of similarities to the anime you that you brought up, as well as most of your points here. I can definitely tell you did a lot of research on this, and it shows in this hub. Great job.