‘Atlanta’s Donald Glover Cast to Play Simba in Disney’s ‘The Lion King’

Director Jon Favreau announced on Friday that Atlanta’s Donald Glover will be voicing the character of Simba and James Earl Jones will play Mufasa in the upcoming live-action version of Disney’s The Lion King. 

Favreau broke the news on Twitter revealing Donald Glover and James Earl Jones will be cast in the new Lion King movie. “I just can’t wait to be king,” Favreau tweeted with a picture of Donald Glover. “Looking forward to working with this legend. #Mufasa.” Favreau said with a picture of James Earl Jones.

Donald Glover is quickly becoming one of the most in-demand actors in Hollywood. Following the success of his award-winning FX TV series Atlanta, Donald Glover has landed a role in the upcoming Star Wars Han Solo spinoff as a younger version of Lando Calrissian.

Donald Glover, also known as Childish Gambino, launched his career as a writer for NBC’s comedy series 30 Rock. He would later play the Troy Barnes in the NBC comedy Community. Glover then left the show to launch a music career and a new FX TV series called Atlanta. The show centered around Atlanta’s rap scene and ended up being a hit. In fact, the show received two Golden Globe Awards for Best Television Series – Musical or Comedy. Also, Donald Glover won Best Actor – Television Series Musical or Comedy.

Donald Glover
LAS VEGAS-SEP 20: Rapper Donald Glover aka Childish Gambino performs in concert at the 2014 iHeartRadio Music Festival Village Show at MGM Resorts Village on September 20, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Debby Wong / Shutterstock, Inc.)

Meanwhile, James Earl Jones, who voiced the character of Mufasa in the original 1994 feature film, will return for the upcoming remake.

Favreau’s previous Disney movie, The Jungle Book, was a box office hit earning $965.8 million worldwide.

The Lion King is one of the highest-grossing animated in Disney history. In fact, The Lion King brought in $968.5 million worldwide since 1994.

The Lion King later won two Academy Awards and several Golden Globe awards and in 2016 the film was selected to be preserved by the Library of Congress for being culturally significant.

Disney is also working on a live-action version of Beauty and the Beast, which will star Emma Watson as Belle. Beauty and the Beast hits theaters in March.

The release date for Disney’s The Lion King has not been revealed but, this new report shows Disney’s growing relationship with the former Community actor Donald Glover.