Given my love for The Lion King movie, it was a real treat to be able to sit in on their panel while at the D23 Expo. Not only did we get to hear from some of the creative minds and talent from the film, we were also able to learn some really cool The Lion King facts. Of course, the audience went wild when Whoopi Goldberg surprised us.

- Taken by Joyce of
– Taken by Joyce of

7 “The Lion King” Facts from the D23 Expo Panel

  • The Lion King was originally referred to as “King of the Jungle”.
  • Lion King and Pocahontas were being made at the same time so it was hard for The Lion King to get people to work on it.
  • Ernie Sabella, the voice of Pumbaa, originally auditioned to be one of the hyenas.
  • Jim Cummings, the laughing hyena, also did the voice of the naked mole rat (who reported from underground).
  • “What do you want me to do, dress in drag and do the hula” was actually an improv line from Timon while recording and they ended up using it.

*Watch this quick video to see how they presented it to be used with a water bottle.

  • Earthquakes, fires and riots caused some delays in the production of The Lion King.
  • Nathan Lane and Ernie Sabella did their voice recordings together which hadn’t really been done before.

It was such an interesting panel filled with funny stories and a lot of heart. You can tell just how much this movie meant to everyone who had a part in making it happen. At the end of the panel, they had musical talent come out and perform The Circle of Life and it was beautifully done.

The Lion King Roars to its rightful place in the Walt Disney Signature Collection on Digital Aug. 15 and on Blu-ray™ Aug. 29!!!