Cancelled Movies. Wiki
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The title card for King of the Jungle. It was originally slated to be released sometime around November 1993. But people first came up with the idea in 1991.

King Of The Jungle is the former version of Disney's 1994 film, The Lion King. The former version was supposed to be more drama-oriented, violent, and less suitable for younger audiences. It would of been written by Linda Woolverton and Jenny Tripp, produced by Brenda Chapman, and had screenplays set by J.T Allen and Ron Bass. The identity of the original director, remains unknown.

Plot

The plot could've been somewhat different from the finalised product that was released in 1994.

Why It Was Cancelled

  1. The original script was too creepy for little kids.
  2. The title of the film was considered zoologically inaccurate: Lions don't actually live in jungles.
  3. The director did not like some of the original names for the characters ("Banagai", "Bangai", "Baasho", "Mheetu", "Diku", "Sarafina", "Dwala", "Kwashi" "Papalio",), so he demanded the writers to change them.
  4. The director did not like the concept of Timon having a girlfriend.
  5. Herr Rhino, was considered a little too aggressive to be fit for a family film, so they scrapped them.
  6. According to Brenda Chapman, screenwriter Linda Woolverton intended Simba to be a slovenly, lazy character who did not deserve the throne. Chapman believed that this made it hard for the audience to like Simba.

Results

  • The script was reworked into a relevantly more kid-friendly and comedic, yet still very emotional film.
  • Certain elements of the original script plot remained, and were included in the finished project.
  • It was released under the title, "The Lion King", on June 24, 1994. It has received positive reviews, and became a cult classic.
  • The Lion King has received 2 Direct-To-Video sequels; The Lion King II: Simba's Pride and The Lion King 1½''.
  • A photorealistic "live-action" remake of The Lion King released on July 19, 2019 to theaters, and received negative reviews for being a soulless bastardization of the original.

Trivia

  • There are some differences with the original film compared to the film we know today:
    • In the original treatment, Pumbaa was going to be an African elephant rather than a warthog.
    • Mufasa was to save Simba from a flood instead of a wacky, downhill wildebeest stampede.
    • Rafiki accused the hyenas and Scar for killing Mufasa murduriously, but Scar ordered his hyenas to go after both Rafiki and Simba, to chase them out of the lands, and "never return", instead of just having Scar convincing Simba to go away.
    • Rather than a leader, Scar was intentionally a rogue in league with the hyenas.
    • Rather than being pecked by vultures, Simba would of been dropped in a pond by a hawk.
    • Rather than being in a sandy and empty oasis, young Simba would be stuck in a sandstorm when he awakens from his slumber.
    • Rather than being Simba's sibling, Nala was originally going to be just Simba's close friend, also, Nala was close to be white instead of a tan color.
    • Instead of Timon and Pumba, a 1989 draft showed that a mongoose called Mabu and Kwashi the baboon would of found Simba instead, and that a jackal called Ndogo would attack him, but Simba survived.
    • The "Hakuna Matata" song was originally going to be called "Have Happy Days".
    • Zazu was not in this version. neither was he going to be mentioned or wasn't even made at the time.
    • Simba grows up with several friends, including Nadra, Mheetu, Bhati, Timon, and Harold.
    • Scar lures Mheetu into a stampede, and Simba tries to save him. Mufasa ends up saving both young lions.
  • The film went through a few titles: "King Of The Beasts", "King Of The Animals", "King Of The Jungle", and then "The Lion King".

References

  1. https://lionking.fandom.com/wiki/King_of_the_Jungle_(disambiguation)
  2. https://www.buzzfeed.com/briangalindo/a-wonderful-look-at-the-behind-the-scenes-art-of-the-lion
  3. https://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/intellect/josc/2018/00000009/00000003/art00006;jsessionid=1lni9fgqq2ssa.x-ic-live-03#

Gallery

Note: Please do not add descriptions to these pictures! We don't want the images to be vandalized in random links. Also, do not mention "Mel Shaw drew these in the 90's and he passed away in 2012" because this was way before his death.

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Pictures

Concept Art

More art/concepts can be found on The Lion King Edition website.

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