When it comes to recreating a Disney animated classic, hiring the ideal cast for the live action remake is as easy as it gets. What could possibly go wrong?
EWAN McGREGOR IN BEAUTY AND THE BEAST. THAT’S WHAT CAN GO WRONG.
Director Jon Favreau is set to film his adaption of Disney’s 1994 feature, The Lion King, following his recent success of The Jungle Book (and his not-so successful Cowboys & Aliens. But who’s counting? I am. Get over it, Jon.)
He recently announced two of his cast members; Donald Glover is to play Simba, because – while Simba can’t wait to be king – let’s face it, Donald is already pretty much king. And reprising his role of Mufasa is James Earl Jones.
So, as someone with little-to-no experience within the movie industry, I have taken it upon myself to cast the remaining characters for a series of reasons; to give justice to my favourite animated movie; to help produce the highest quality performances; and – most importantly – to make sure the fucking fateful event which will now be referred to as McGregor-gate never, ever happens again.
The picture’s antagonist is a ruthless liar, so it would be simple enough to hire Sean Spicer as the wounded lion*. Scar was one of my favourite characters, as a child – which explains how much of a little bastard I was in my youth – so it only seems fitting that one of my favourite actors, Gary Oldman, performs the role. His suave British accent is perfect for the character, and if someone knows how to play a bad guy, it’s Gary “Léon/True Romance/The Fifth Element/JFK” Oldman.
*Who said I can’t do high-brow satire?
Timon and Pumbaa
In a world where brothers are dropping each other of off cliffs, only to be crushed to death, in front of their tear-filled children, you seriously need some comic relief. That’s why Aziz Ansari and Bill Hader would portray the meerkat and warthog duo effortlessly. Bill Hader is a wizard… When it comes to putting on various voices, so could nail Pumbaa’s baritone vocals. (I wanted to leave some suspense to see if you’d think Bill actually went to Hogwarts). As for Aziz, I dare you to find someone who can do frantic slapstick better (or louder) than him.
This one’s just a given, isn’t it? She’s nailing the voice acting game at the minute, having been in Star Wars: The Force Awakens and in – handily – Jon Favreau’s The Jungle Book, so it has to go to Lupita Nyong’o, surely. Nala is a feisty, strong female character; ideal for Lupita. Plus, I’ve just rewatched 12 Years A Slave, and I just want Lupita to do a role where she’s happy. IS THAT TOO MUCH TO ASK?!
Viola Davis. End of. ‘Nuff said. You could get that woman to play Pride Rock, and she’d do it with enough gravitas that I will feel heartbroken because – I dunno – the rock was rained on. Viola is one of (let’s face it, second to Meryl) finest actresses ever, and she’d have more than enough capabilities to portray the pain Sarabi goes through. But, if that role has already been cast, Viola could also portray any of the various animals; some of the bugs Timon eats; or just a leaf, and still be worthy of an Oscar.
The mandrill is a wise-yet-eccentric soul, with a luminous red bum. A man who bares similar traits – by which I mean wise and eccentric – is Morgan Freeman. I’m unaware as to the state of his behind. His voice bares the softness that Rafiki needs to come across as learned, but if The LEGO Movie proves anything, Morgan is capable of going just a bit weird.
The Grand Budapest Hotel. Hail, Caesar! Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit. If there’s one man who can really use his British accent just for comic effect, it’s Ralph Fiennes. He never ceases to amaze me with his performances, and he’ll undoubtedly be able to illustrate the hornbill’s panic and pompousness. And the main reason I want him to be cast as Zazu is because I’ve already got my headline sorted – Ralph Fly-nnes. Sigh. I wish that didn’t take me 67 minutes to come up with.
Shenzi, Banzai and Ed
Again, these three hyenas add a lot of humour to the otherwise abysmally traumatising tale of murder and betrayal; which just so happens to be a children’s movie. Leslie Jones was the best thing in the Ghostbusters reboot (which isn’t saying much, because the rest of the movie was as exciting as trimming your toenails), so she’d be a fantastic replacement for Whoopi Goldberg’s Shenzi. Tracy Morgan is an incredible stand-up comedian, and could bring some improv to Banzai. And, well, Ed… Jim Carrey can make some inane gibberish for him, right? Disney have a budget. Let’s just spend it, alright?