Disney released a trailer for the upcoming “live action” Lion King movie. Now obviously the term live action is being used liberally here since all the animals are CGI, but it is in the same vein as the Aladdin, Jungle Book, Beauty, and the Beast, and Cinderella live action reboots.
Now the trailer looks beautiful. The CGI is fantastic, and I am sure the movie will be competently made and make a ton of money. But do we really need it? The original Lion King is pretty much the perfect animated movie, and it is not dated at all. You can still put it on today, and it is just as good as when it came out, and just as relevant. What can a remake possibly add?
Some of these other reboots served a purpose. Cinderella and Jungle Book both were remakes of flawed movies and improved upon the original story. They expanded the lore and offered more rounded characters. But others, although not bad movies, were basically shot for shot remakes, and didnt really change much at all. Beauty and the Beast for instance. It added a single song, added some minor characters, and explored Lefou a tiny bit more. It certainly didnt change enough to justify a remake. I enjoyed it, but it was a pointless movie.
And Lion King is just one of many that are coming out. In fact, 4 live-action Disney movies are coming soon. Aladdin, Dumbo, Lady and the Tramp, and Mulan are also slated to be released over the next two years. Mulan and Dumbo are both movies with a potential to be improved upon. I am not saying I think the remakes will improve upon the original, but I have hope they will be more Cinderella and less Beauty and the Beast.
Plus Dumbo had Danny Devito which would make any movie better.
But I have no faith in Aladdin. Not only is trying to remake something that was already great and not dated at all, but the trailer they released made it look bad, and I am not the biggest Guy Ritchie fan.
So I am not against these live-action reboots in general, and I know that they are going to get made regardless because Nostalgia is the most powerful force in the world. I just wish they would focus more on movies that have room to grow. There are a lot of Disney animated movies that were, well, not that good. The original Jungle Book was not good, the original Cinderella was not very good. They were both very simple movies that didnt do a whole lot in the storytelling department.
With all of that said, I am part of the problem and will be seeing The Lion King when it comes out because I am just as much a sucker for Nostalgia as everyone else.