Director Jon Favreau’s The Lion King has become the fourth Disney-released movie to pass $1 billion at the global box office, reaching the milestone in less than three weeks.
By today (Wednesday) The Lion King has grossed $361 million domestically, with a further $639 million from international markets. It joins Captain Marvel ($1.128 billion), Avengers: Endgame ($2.793 billion) and Aladdin ($1.011 billion) as four of 2019’s five billion-dollar movies (while related to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the fifth, Spider-Man: Far From Home, is released by Sony).
This past weekend, The Lion King helped Disney to set a new all-time yearly global box office record of $7.67 billion, beating its own previous record from 2016 with five months to spare (and Frozen 2 and Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker still to come).
In terms of Disney’s live-action reimaginings of its animated classics, The Lion King is now the fourth biggest behind Aladdin, Alice in Wonderland ($1.026 billion) and Beauty and the Beast ($1.264 billion), but one would have to imagine its only a short matter of time before it claims the top spot.
Lions rule the African savanna in The Lion King, which welcomes Donald Glover (Atlanta, Solo: A Star Wars Story) as future king Simba, Beyoncé Knowles-Carter (Dreamgirls, Lemonade visual album) as Simba’s friend-turned-love interest Nala, and James Earl Jones (Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Field of Dreams) as Simba’s wise and loving father, Mufasa, reprising his iconic performance from Disney’s 1994 animated classic. Chiwetel Ejiofor (Twelve Years a Slave, Marvel Studios’ Doctor Strange) was called on to portray Simba’s villainous uncle Scar, and Alfre Woodard (Juanita, Marvel’s Luke Cage) portrays Simba’s no-nonsense mother, Sarabi. JD McCrary (OWN’s Tyler Perry’s The Paynes, Apple’s Vital Signs) fills the shoes of Young Simba, a confident cub who can’t wait to be king, and Shahadi Wright Joseph (NBC’s Hairspray Live, Broadway’s The Lion King) brings tough cub Young Nala to life.
Directed by Jon Favreau (The Jungle Book), The Lion King features a voice cast that includes Donald Glover (Solo: A Star Wars Story) as Simba, Beyonce (Dreamgirls) as Nala, Billy Eichner (Billy on the Street) as Timon, Seth Rogen (Sausage Party) as Pumbaa, John Oliver (Last Week Tonight) as Zazu, Chiwetel Ejiofor (Doctor Strange) as Scar, James Earl Jones (The Lion King) as Mufasa, Alfre Woodard (Luke Cage) as Sarabi, John Kani (Black Panther) as Rafiki, JD McCrary (Vital Signs) as Young Simba, Shahadi Wright Joseph (Hairspray Live) as Young Nala, Eric André (Man Seeking Woman) as Azizi, Florence Kasumba (Black Panther) as Shenzi, and Keegan-Michael Key (The Predator) as Kamari.