The Lion Guard

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The Lion Guard
The Lion Guard Logo.png
GenreChildren's adventure
Developed byFord Riley
Directed byHowy Parkins
Voices of
Opening theme"Call of the Guard" performed by The Lion Guard Chorus
Ending theme"Here Comes the Lion Guard" performed by Beau Black
Composer(s)
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons2
No. of episodes51 (+ 1 pilot) (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producer(s)Ford Riley
Running timeapprox. 22 Minutes
Production company(s)
Release
Original network
Original releaseNovember 22, 2015 (2015-11-22) – present (present)
External links
Official website

The Lion Guard is a Canadian-American animated television series developed by Ford Riley[3] and based on Disney's 1994 film The Lion King. The series was first broadcast with a television movie titled The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar on Disney Channel on November 22, 2015[4] and began airing as a TV series on January 15, 2016 on Disney Junior and Disney Channel.[5] It is the second television series to be based on The Lion King, the first being Timon & Pumbaa. The Lion Guard is a sequel to The Lion King and takes place during the time-gap within the 1998 film The Lion King II: Simba's Pride.[6]

The second season premiered on July 7, 2017. A third season was commissioned in March 2017.

Plot[edit]

Kion is the son of King Simba and Queen Nala, the younger brother of Kiara and the prince of the Pride Lands. As the second-born of the Lion King, he is gifted with a power called the Roar of the Elders and becomes the leader of the Lion Guard, a team of animals who protect the Pride Lands and defend the Circle of Life. Kion, along with his friends Bunga the honey badger, Beshte the hippopotamus, Fuli the cheetah and Ono the egret, sets out to keep the Pride Lands safe and protected from animals who do not respect the Circle of Life.

Episodes[edit]

SeasonEpisodesOriginally aired
First airedLast aired
PilotNovember 22, 2015 (2015-11-22)
126January 15, 2016 (2016-01-15)April 21, 2017 (2017-04-21)
228July 7, 2017 (2017-07-07)TBA

Characters[edit]

The Lion Guard[edit]

  • Kion (voiced by Max Charles[1]) – A lion cub who is Simba and Nala's son, Mufasa's grandson, Kiara's younger brother, the Prince of the Pride Lands, and the leader of the Lion Guard as well as its fiercest member. He serves as the main protagonist of the series. He often exclaims "Hevi kabisa!". His battlecry for the Lion Guard is "Till the Pride Lands end, Lion Guard defend!".
  • Bunga (voiced by Joshua Rush[1]) – A honey badger who is the bravest member of the Lion Guard. He is Timon and Pumbaa's adoptive nephew and Kion's best friend.[7] He often exclaims "Un-Bunga-lievable!". His battlecry is "Zuka Zama!".
  • Fuli (voiced by Diamond White[1]) – A cheetah who is the fastest member of the Lion Guard, the only female member, Kion's friend and second in command. She is also the first female animal to ever serve in the Guard as mentioned in The Rise of Scar. Her battlecry is "Huwezi!".
  • Ono (voiced by Atticus Shaffer[1]) – An egret who is the keenest of sight of the Lion Guard and Kion's friend. He often exclaims "Hapana!".
  • Beshte (voiced by Dusan Brown[1]) – A hippopotamus who is the strongest member of the Lion Guard and Kion's friend. He often exclaims "Poa!". His battlecry is "Twende Kiboko!".

The Lion King alumni[edit]

The following characters from The Lion King movies appear in this series:

  • Simba (voiced by Rob Lowe[1]) – A lion who is Mufasa's son, Nala's mate, Scar's nephew, and Kion and Kiara's father. He is the King of the Pride Lands and the leader of his Pride.[8] Simba and Bunga share a history of having lived with Timon and Pumbaa.
  • Nala (voiced by Gabrielle Union[1]) – A lioness who is Simba's mate, and Kion and Kiara's mother. She is the Queen of the Pride Lands.[8]
  • Kiara (voiced by Eden Riegel[1]) – A lion cub who is Simba and Nala's daughter, Mufasa's granddaughter, Kion's older sister, the Princess of the Pride Lands and its future queen.
  • Pumbaa (voiced by Ernie Sabella[1]) – Simba and Timon's warm-hearted warthog friend.[7] Pumbaa is Bunga's other adoptive uncle. Sabella reprises his role from The Lion King and its spin-offs.
  • Rafiki (voiced by Khary Payton[9]) – A wise old mandrill who serves as a Royal Mjuzi (a Pride Lands word for knowledge keeper and advisor) for the Royal Family of Pride Rock. In The Rise of Scar, Rafiki takes on an apprentice named Makini.
  • Mufasa (voiced by James Earl Jones in Return of the Roar, reprising his role from The Lion King,[1] Gary Anthony Williams in later episodes) – Simba's father, and Kion and Kiara's paternal grandfather who was killed in the original film by a wildebeest stampede orchestrated by his younger brother Scar. Since his death, he lives on as a spirit that gives Kion advice on how to get through any tough plight.
  • Scar (voiced by David Oyelowo[10]) – Simba's deceased uncle, Kion and Kiara's great-uncle, and Mufasa's younger brother. He is the main antagonist of the second season. Scar was once the leader of a Lion Guard before Kion and also had the Roar of the Elders, but the power went to his head and he began to believe that he should be king instead of Mufasa. He lost the Roar after he used it to destroy his fellow Lion Guard members when they refused to help him overthrow Mufasa. Later in life, he orchestrated his brother's death with the help of his hyena henchmen. After being defeated by Simba in a vicious fight, he was mauled to death by the hyenas when he tried to pin the blame of Mufasa's death on them. By the end of The Rise of Scar, Kion unknowingly summons Scar back as a fiery spirit in the Outlands' volcano after he uses the Roar in anger when Janja provokes him. In "Let Sleeping Crocs Lie," Scar takes in Kiburi's float and announces his plans to unite all the animals in the Outlands to takeover the Pride Lands and defeat the new Lion Guard and Simba, who were unaware that Scar had returned. In "Divide and Conquer", Kion briefly witnesses Scar's spirit in the flames of a fire before it vanishes, but is unsure of what to make of it. Only a strange scorch mark remains, which Rafiki recognizes as a sign of terrible evil. In the following episode "The Scorpion's Sting", Scar reveals himself to the Lion Guard while they are in the Outlands collecting volcanic ash needed to cure Simba from a scorpion sting.
  • The Outsiders – A pride of offshoot lions that were loyal to Scar. After a failed takeover following Scar's death, Simba banished them to the Outlands where they tried to invade the territory that Jasiri's clan lives in. Kion was hesitant to use the Roar of the Elders because of what it did to Scar. After being told by the rest of the Lion Guard that Scar used the Roar for evil, Kion defeated the Outsiders with the Roar of the Elders which sent them flying to the Outlands' termite mound area which became their base of operations.
    • Zira (voiced by Nika Futterman) – A lioness who is the mother of Kovu, Vitani and Nuka and the leader of the Outsiders. She was a loyal follower of Scar. After a failed takeover following Scar's death, Zira and her followers were banished to the Outlands by Simba.
    • Kovu (voiced by Jason Marsden) – A lion cub who is the chosen successor of Scar, Zira's youngest son, and the younger brother of Nuka and Vitani. Prior to the series, he briefly befriended Kiara. Marsden previously voiced adult Kovu in The Lion King II: Simba's Pride.
    • Nuka (voiced by Andy Dick) – An adolescent lion who is the oldest son of Zira, the older brother of Kovu and Vitani, and a member of the Outsiders. Dick reprises his role from Simba's Pride.
    • Vitani (voiced by Lacey Chabert) – A lion cub who is Zira's daughter and the sister of Nuka and Kovu. Chabert reprises her role from Simba's Pride.

Supporting characters[edit]

Pride Landers[edit]

The following characters live in the Pride Lands.

  • Tiifu (voiced by Sarah Hyland[9] in Return of the Roar, season 1, and The Rise of Scar; Bailey Gambertoglio in season 2) – A lion cub friend of Kiara and a member of Simba's Pride who is somewhat more sensible than her constant companion Zuri. In the season 2 episode, "The Underground Adventure", it is revealed that Tiifu is afraid of the dark, but she soon overcomes her fear thanks to Kuchimba.
  • Zuri (voiced by Madison Pettis[9]) – Another lion cub friend of Kiara and a member of Simba's Pride who is somewhat vain and hates getting dirty.
  • Makini (voiced by Landry Bender) – A young mandrill who becomes Rafiki's apprentice. She is one of a few characters who knows that Kion speaks to the spirit of Mufasa.
  • Big Baboon's Troop – A troop of baboons that resides in Nyani Grove.
    • Big Baboon (voiced by Ford Riley in Return of the Roar, Dee Bradley Baker in later appearances) – An olive baboon who is the leader his troop.
    • Gumba (voiced by Jacquez Swanigan) – A young olive baboon who is a part of Big Baboon's troop.
  • Pua (voiced by Gerald C. Rivers) – The former leader of the local crocodile float. He was challenged by Makuu to a "mashindano" (a fight for dominance in which the winner becomes the new leader of the float and the loser has to leave). Upon being defeated by Makuu, Pua left the float.
  • Makuu (voiced by Blair Underwood) – The leader of his crocodile float after he defeated Pua in a "mashindano". In the first season, Makuu and his float antagonized the Lion Guard and caused trouble. In season 2, Makuu has reformed from his trouble-making ways as he works to become a better leader for his float and the Pride Lands.
  • Thurston's Herd – A herd of zebras that resides in the Pride Lands.
    • Thurston (voiced by Kevin Schon) – A handsome yet dimwitted plains zebra who is the leader of the herd.
    • Kwato (voiced by Lyons Luke Mathias) – A young plains zebra foal who is part of Thurston's herd.
  • Mbeya (voiced by Howy Parkins) – An old rhinoceros who is the leader of his crash.
  • Ma Tembo's Herd – A herd of elephants that resides in the Pride Lands. They resided in Kilio Valley until it was destroyed by a fire caused by the Outlanders in "The Kilio Valley Fire."
    • Ma Tembo (voiced by Lynette DuPree) – An African bush elephant with a broken right tusk who is the leader of the herd and the daughter of Amanifu, an old friend of Simba's who dies early in the series.
    • Mtoto (voiced by Natalie Coughlin in "Bunga the Wise," Justin Felbinger in later episodes) – A young African bush elephant calf who is part of Ma Tembo's herd.
    • Mtoto’s mom (voiced by Russi Taylor in "Follow That Hippo!," Virginia Watson in later episodes) – An unnamed African bush elephant who is part of Ma Tembo’s herd.
    • Zito (voiced by Nick Watt) – A grouchy and impatient African bush elephant who is part of Ma Tembo's herd.
    • Johari (voiced by Ace Gibson) – An African bush elephant who is part of Ma Tembo’s herd.
    • Zigo (voiced by Marieve Herington) – An African bush elephant who is part of Ma Tembo’s herd.
  • Twiga's Herd – A herd of Masai giraffes that resides in Acacia Grove.
    • Twiga (voiced by Alex Cartana) – A Masai giraffe who is the leader of the herd.
    • Juhudi (voiced by Ivy Bishop) – A young Masai giraffe calf who is Twiga's daughter.
    • Shingo (voiced by Phil LaMarr) – A Masai giraffe who is part of Twiga's herd.
  • Mbuni (voiced by Russi Taylor) – A cheerful ostrich who is the leader of her flock.
  • Muhanga (voiced by Russi Taylor) – An aardvark.
  • Muhangus (voiced by Khary Payton) – An aardvark who is Muhanga's mate.
  • Shauku (voiced by Jacob Guenther) – A young mongoose pup.
  • Tamaa (voiced by CJ Byrnes) – A drongo who can imitate the voice of any animal.
  • Muhimu's Herd – A herd of plains zebras that resides in the Pride Lands.
    • Muhimu (voiced by Kari Wahlgren, Emma Bunton in the UK version of "The Mbali Fields Migration"[11]) – A plains zebra who is the leader of the herd.
    • Hamu (voiced by Lyons Luke Mathias) – A young plains zebra foal who is Muhimu's son. Shortly after being born, he helped the Lion Guard fend off Janja, Cheezi and Chungu.
  • Swala (voiced by Tunisia Hardison) – A Thomson's gazelle who is the leader of her herd.
  • Ajabu (voiced by Ron Funches) – An okapi who travels to the Pride Lands to get away from Makucha.
  • Mjomba's Pack – A pack of aardwolves that resides in the Pride Lands and only come out at night. The Lion Guard accidentally mistook them for hyenas until Kion cleared things up and fended off Reirei and Goigoi. The aardwolves are known for keeping the termite population down.
    • Mjomba (voiced by Charlie Adler) – A grumpy and impatient aardwolf who is the leader of the pack.
    • Ogopa (voiced by Marieve Herington) – A bright and bubbly aardwolf.
    • Haya (voiced by Ogie Banks) – A nervous and shy aardwolf.
  • Vuruga Vuruga (voiced by Virginia Watson) – An buffalo who is the leader of her herd. Kiara once presided over their Royal Buffalo Wallow.
  • Young Rhino (voiced by Kari Wahlgren) – A young black rhinoceros calf.
  • Hadithi (voiced by John O'Hurley) – A legendary eagle who faked having invented the Hadithi Spin.
  • Bupu's Herd – A herd of antelopes that resides in the Pride Lands.
    • Bupu (voiced by Michael Dorn) – A stubborn sable antelope who is the leader of the herd and values polite behavior.
    • Boboka (voiced by Erica Luttrell) – A sable antelope who is part of Bupu's herd.
  • Chura (voiced by Meghan Strange) – A toad.
  • Kulinda (voiced by Elise Allen) – A hamerkop who leaves her egg in Ono's nest while she builds a new nest that is safe from predators. She considers Ono to be part of her family, due to him taking good care of her baby. She later names her baby Ona, in honor of Ono.
  • Masikio (voiced by Dee Bradley Baker) – A hare who help The Lion Guard from mudslides and save his sister.
  • Tumbili (voiced by Ace Gibson) – A colobus who is the leader of his troop. He grew tired of Furaha's antics and sent him away.
  • Chama (voiced by Jacob Bertrand) – A young fun-loving African bush elephant who used to be part of Ma Tembo's herd. He, Mzaha, and Furaha are best friends and share a tree together near Big Springs.
  • Mzaha (voiced by Cade Sutton) – A young fun-loving sable antelope who used to be part of Bupu's herd.
  • Furaha (voiced by Mekai Curtis) – A young fun-loving Zanzibar red colobus who used to be part of Tumbili's troop.
  • Nyuni (voiced by Nolan North) – A wagtail who temporarily becomes an unofficial member of Bupu's herd.
  • Hodari (voiced by Justin Hires) – An gecko who dreamed of being in a crocodile float. Makuu made him an honorary member of his float due to his bravery when confronting Kiburi.
  • Kongwe (voiced by CCH Pounder) – An tortoise who is the oldest and wisest animal in the Pride Lands.
  • Kinyonga (voiced by Meghan Strange) – A chameleon who helped the Lion Guard by spying on Scar in the Outlands.
  • Kuchimba (voiced by AJ McLean) – A mole who lives underground. He helped Kion, Bunga, Kiara, Tiifu, and Zuri find part of their way back to Pride Rock when they were lost underground, and taught Tiifu that the dark is nothing to be afraid of.

Outlanders[edit]

The following characters live in the Outlands:

  • Jasiri's Clan – A clan of friendly hyenas that resides in the Outlands. Unlike Janja's clan, Jasiri and her hyena clan respect the Circle of Life and mostly scavenge for food. When Jasiri learns from Kion that Scar has returned, she and her clan form a hyena resistance to aid the Lion Guard and help defeat Scar.
    • Jasiri (voiced by Maia Mitchell[5]) – A spotted hyena living in the Outlands who is the leader of the clan and allies with Kion.
    • Madoa (voiced by Maisie Klompus) – A spotted hyena who is Jasiri's sister and is part of her clan.
    • Tunu (voiced by Crimson Hart) – A spotted hyena cub and brother of Wema who is part of Jasiri's clan.
    • Wema (voiced by Fiona Hart) – A spotted hyena cub and sister of Tunu who is part of Jasiri's clan.

Back Landers[edit]

The following characters live in the Back Lands which is on the border of the Pride Lands:

  • Badilli (voiced by Jack McBrayer) – A friendly cream-colored leopard from Mirihi Forest in the Back Lands who was driven out of his territory by Mapigano. The Lion Guard trained him to have enough courage to drive off Mapigano.
  • Dhahabu's Herd – A herd of zebras that resides in Dhahabu Grove in the Back Lands.
    • Dhahabu (voiced by Renée Elise Goldsberry) – A plains zebra with golden stripes who is the leader of the herd. Bunga admires her greatly. Dhahabu is modeled after the late Zoe the Golden Zebra who resided in Hawaii's Three Ring Ranch.[12][13]
    • Raha (voiced by Rico Rodriguez) – A plains zebra who is Starehe's brother and part of Dhahabu's herd.
    • Starehe (voiced by Raini Rodriguez) – A plains zebra who is Raha's sister and part of Dhahabu's herd.

Other characters[edit]

The following characters do not live in the areas listed above:

  • King Sokwe's Troop - A troop of gorillas who live in the Theluji Mountains.
    • King Sokwe (voiced by John Rhys-Davies) – A mountain gorilla and friend of Simba who is the leader of the troop and Majinuni and Hafifu's father.
    • Hafifu (voiced by Phil Lester) – A mountain gorilla prince, brother of Majinuni, and son of King Sokwe who came to the Pride Lands to deliver a message to Simba.
    • Majinuni (voiced by Dan Howell) – A mountain gorilla prince, brother of Hafifu, and son of King Sokwe who came to the Pride Lands to deliver a message to Simba.
    • Shujaa (voiced by Christopher Jackson) - A big and strong mountain gorilla who refers to himself in the third person. He is sent to the Pride Lands by King Sokwe to assist the Lion Guard in their fight against the villainous Outlanders.
  • The Traveling Baboon Show - A trio of baboons from an unknown land who steal food from around the Pride Lands, but later saw the error of their ways when the Lion Guard saved them from Janja's clan. In "Timon and Pumbaa's Christmas," the Traveling Baboon Show is among the animals that assist in performing "The Twelve Ways of Christmas" song.
    • Uroho (voiced by Sinbad) – A yellow baboon who is the leader of Traveling Baboon show.
    • Mwevi (voiced by Dee Bradley Baker) – A yellow baboon who's a member of the Traveling Baboon Show.
    • Mwizi (voiced by Dee Bradley Baker) – A yellow baboon who's a member of the Traveling Baboon Show.

Antagonists[edit]

Outlanders[edit]

When Scar's spirit is summoned in season 2, he makes plans to gather the villainous Outlanders as part of his plans to take revenge on the Pride Lands.

  • Janja's Clan – A clan of male hyenas that live in the Outlands and do not respect the Circle of Life. In "The Hyena Resistance", Jasiri saves Janja from falling into a steam vent, and tells him that he and his clan are welcome to join her clan's hyena resistance to defeat Scar. After some hesitation, Janja dismisses her offer. His hesitation causes Shupavu and Njano to question his loyalty and leaves Jasiri hopeful that he will come around eventually.
    • Janja (voiced by Andrew Kishino) – A cunning and ruthless spotted hyena who is the leader of the clan.
    • Cheezi (voiced by Vargus Mason) – An excitable spotted hyena and one of Janja's right-hand henchmen.
    • Chungu (voiced by Kevin Schon) – An unintelligent spotted hyena with a slightly heavier build than the other hyenas who is the other of Janja’s right-hand henchmen.
    • Nne (voiced by Beau Black) – A sly and stout but smart spotted hyena.
    • Tano (voiced by Dee Bradley Baker) – A devious and sloping but smart spotted hyena.
  • Mzingo's Parliament – A parliament of vultures that live in the Outlands and is allied with Janja's clan.
    • Mzingo (voiced by Greg Ellis) – A calculative white-backed vulture who is the leader of the parliament. He sometimes serves as Janja's spy and scout.
    • Mwoga (voiced by Cam Clarke) – A foolish and clumsy white-backed vulture who is a member of the parliament.
  • Ushari (voiced by Christian Slater) – An cobra who often conflicted with Bunga and would get disturbed whenever the Lion Guard was near him. In the season 2 special The Rise of Scar, Ushari finally gets fed up with the Lion Guard disturbing his peace and inadvertently finds out that Kion talks to Mufasa's spirit. He informs Janja of this which leads to the two of them orchestrating events that enable them to summon Scar's spirit. Upon Scar's spirit being unleashed, Ushari becomes a second-in-command to him in Scar's plot to unite all the animals of the Outlands in a plot to get revenge on the Pride Lands.
  • Reirei's Pack – A family pack of jackals that live in the Outlands.
    • Reirei (voiced by Ana Gasteyer) – A clever, scheming and manipulative black-backed jackal who is the matriarch of the family.
    • Goigoi (voiced by Phil LaMarr) – A greedy and dimwitted jackal who is Reirei's mate.
    • Dogo (voiced by Jacob Guenther) – A black-backed jackal pup who is one of Reirei and Goigoi's sons. He has blue eyes compared to the other pups who have brown eyes.
    • Kijana (voiced by Amber Hood) – A jackal pup who is Reirei and Goigoi's daughter and Dogo's sister.
  • Shupavu's Group – A group of skinks who are friends with Ushari and serve as his spies in the Pride Lands.
    • Shupavu (voiced by Meghan Strange) – A sneaky skink who is the leader of the group. She dislikes being close to Pride Rock.
    • Njano (voiced by Ford Riley) – A crafty, blue-tongued skink who is Shupavu's second-in-command.
    • Nyeusi (voiced by Dee Bradley Baker) – A stealthy black skink who is a member of the group.
    • Waza – An observant blue skink who is a member of the group.
    • Nyata – A swift purple skink who is a member of the group.
  • Kiburi's Float – Former members of Makuu's float who defied Makuu's orders which led to them working with Ushari. While Kiburi challenged Makuu to a "mashindano", his three followers tried to attack Simba from behind only for the Lion Guard to intervene. Kiburi and his followers were kicked out of Makuu's float upon his loss and were exiled to the Outlands by Simba, with Kiburi vowing to have his revenge someday. Upon running into Ushari again, Kiburi and his followers were led to Scar's spirit in the hyenas' volcano and formed an alliance with him.
    • Kiburi (voiced by Common) – An arrogant Nile crocodile who is the leader of the float.
    • Tamka (voiced by Nolan North) – An overconfident and unintelligent Nile crocodile who is a member of the float.
    • Nduli (voiced by Jorge Diaz) – An optimistic Nile crocodile who is a member of the float.
  • Kenge (voiced by Kristofer Hivju) – An enormous and ferocious monitor, and acquaintance of Ushari who dislikes being called "little" or else it will infuriate him. His venomous bite induces temporary paralysis.
  • Sumu (voiced by Ford Riley) – A venomous scorpion who was ordered by Scar to sting Simba.

Back Landers[edit]

  • Makucha (voiced by Steven Blum) – A cream-colored leopard from the Back Lands who tracks Ajabu to the Pride Lands since okapis are rare creatures. Makucha is later revealed to be the leader of his leap which is first shown when the Lion Guard was looking for water in the Back Lands during a water shortage in the Pride Lands.
  • Mapigano (voiced by Jorge Diaz) – A cream-colored leopard who bullied Badilli upon invading his territory in Mirihi Forest in the Back Lands.

Others[edit]

This section lists any villains that are not from the Outlands or the Back Lands:

  • Mpishi (voiced by Carla Hall) – A hawk who leaves her hunting grounds from an unknown land and travels to the Pride Lands looking for a rare meal. She teamed up with Mwoga to target Kulinda's newly-hatched chick only to be driven off by the Lion Guard.

Production[edit]

The series was announced by Disney on June 9, 2014, on the run up to the first film's 20th anniversary. Disney Junior general manager Nancy Kanter stated: "It's kind of like The Lion King meets The Avengers."[14] The series' announcement came after a meeting between Kanter and Disney chief executive Robert Iger. Iger suggested to Kanter that Disney Junior should consider producing content to celebrate the 20th anniversary of The Lion King in 2014. Disney had shown early footage to young test audiences, who were able to make suggestions, such as adjusting the look of the hyenas.[15] Disney Consumer Products launched a line of toys to tie into the television series, as well at book titles based on the series such as Return of the Roar, Can't Wait to be Queen, Bunga the Wise, Meet the New Guard, Fuli Finds Her Place, Join the Lion Guard! and Kion's Animal Alphabet.[16] A sneak peek of The Lion Guard was shown at the 2015 D23 Expo.[17] On August 12, 2015, a sneak peek was shown, with new information that the television movie was scheduled to air in November 2015 to be titled The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar.[18] On October 9, 2015, it was announced that Return of the Roar would premiere on November 22, 2015, on Disney Channel.[4]

On coming up with the idea, the series' creator and executive producer Ford Riley noted that in The Lion King II: Simba's Pride Kiara is introduced and will be future queen. Riley was interested in the idea of a second-born cub and what his role would be if Kiara is destined to become queen. Additionally, he was inspired by his 8-year-old son. "Every Thursday he and his buddies go to the park and they have this imaginary superhero team and they have all these imaginary adventures. That’s when it hit me. Let’s have a group of superheroes in the Pride Lands – The Avengers meets The Lion King!"[6][19]

Riley confirmed the timeline of the series; in Simba's Pride there is a years-long time gap, The Lion Guard takes place during the years in-between Kiara's first meeting with Kovu as a cub and her first hunt as an adult.[6]

Riley also noted the inclusion of Swahili into the series; "[W]e’ve actually hired Sarah Mirza, who literally wrote the book on English-Swahili translations. We’ve been using Swahili not just in names of characters and places but also in the language of the show itself."[6]

Classic mythology is used as inspiration for the show. In reference to Return of the Roar, Riley noted; "The whole laying on hands where Kion gives the mark of the guard to the rest of the team, that goes back to the Bible." Riley noted that protecting the Circle of Life is the main theme of the series; "The animals who respect it don’t eat too much, allow for the grass to grow, and larger animals to eat smaller animals. Our bad guys come from those that don’t respect the Circle of Life. They just want to eat and wreak havoc."[19]

In terms of giving The Lion Guard the same look as the original film, director Howy Parkins stated that they were mindful to keep the essence of The Lion King. To that end, the crew did extensive research on the look of the backgrounds and characters and were able to obtain some original model sheets. In addition, Barry Atkinson and Mike Surrey, background painter and supervising animator for Timon on the original film respectively, were brought in to consult with the series' background artists, animators and storyboard artists.[20]

Speaking on the show's educational aspect, Parkins stated that research was done on animals and habitats in the Serengeti, and that this information is woven into storylines without being overt.[20]

Spin-off[edit]

A short-form series called It's UnBungalievable starring Bunga and Ono premiered on Disney Junior and Disneynature on January 9, 2016. In the series, Bunga and Ono pick two animals to compete in contests such as "Who's Quicker?" "Who Has Better Hair?" and "Who's Hungrier?" The series features live-action animal footage provided by Disneynature.[21]

  1. "Who's Quicker?"
  2. "Who's Mightier?"
  3. "Who Has Better Hair?"
  4. "Who's Hungrier?"
  5. "Who's the Better Babysitter?"
  6. "Who's Cuter?"
  7. "Who's Sillier?"
  8. "Who's Louder?"
  9. "Who's Brainier?"
  10. "Who's a Better Flyer?"

Broadcast[edit]

Like its American counterpart, Return of the Roar premiered on November 22, 2015, on Disney Channel in Canada, while the series premiered on January 17, 2016, on Disney Junior, two days after its American premiere.[22][23] In the United Kingdom and Ireland, Return of the Roar premiered on Disney Junior on February 8, 2016, while the series premiered on April 13, 2016.[24][25] In Australia and New Zealand, the pilot debuted on February 6, 2016, and the series began airing on February 28 on Disney Junior.[26] In Southeast Asia, Return of the Roar premiered on March 20, 2016, on Disney Channel (April 11, 2016, on Disney Junior) and the series premiered on April 17, 2016, on Disney Junior block in Disney Channel.[27][28] It aired in TVNZ in New Zealand and 7flix in Australia. E-Junior in the United Arab Emirates, Sat.1 in Germany and MiniMini+ in Poland. The series aired finally on Disneynature and released on Hulu.

Home media[edit]

DVD releases[edit]

Distributed by Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment.

Title Release Date Episodes Additional Features
The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar[29] February 23, 2016 Television movie Music video of Beau Black performing "Here Comes the Lion Guard."

Talking Lion Guard Backpack Clip

The Lion Guard: Unleash the Power[30] September 20, 2016
  • "Fuli's New Family" (Season 1, Episode 7)
  • "Bunga the Wise" (Season 1, Episode 3)
  • "Eye of the Beholder" (Season 1, Episode 5)
  • "Follow That Hippo!" (Season 1, Episode 9)
  • "The Search for Utamu" (Season 1, Episode 8)
  • "Never Judge a Hyena by Its Spots" (Season 1, Episode 1)

Lion Guard Power Necklace

The Lion Guard: Life in the Pride Lands[31] January 10, 2017
  • "The Rise of Makuu" (Season 1, Episode 2)
  • "The Kupatana Celebration" (Season 1, Episode 6)
  • "Bunga and the King" (Season 1, Episode 13)
  • "Never Roar Again" (Season 1, Episode 21)
  • "The Imaginary Okapi" (Season 1, Episode 14)
Music videos: "A Trail to Hope", "Teke Ruka Teleza"

It's UnBungalievable shorts

Five Lion Guard Wristbands

The Lion Guard: The Rise of Scar[32] January 9, 2018
  • "The Rise of Scar" (Season 2, Episode 5/Television movie)
  • "The Trouble With Galagos" (Season 1, Episode 16)
  • "Janja's New Crew" (Season 1, Episode 17)
  • "Baboons!" (Season 1, Episode 18)
  • "Lions of the Outlands" (Season 1, Episode 20)

Soundtracks[edit]

The Lion Guard (Music from the TV Series)
The Lion Guard (Music from the TV Series).jpg
Soundtrack album by
Various artists
ReleasedJanuary 8, 2016
GenreChildren, pop, Pop rock, world, soundtrack
Length34:43
LabelWalt Disney
The Lion Guard (Music from the TV Series)[33]
No.TitlePerformer(s)Length
1."Call of the Guard (The Lion Guard Theme)"The Lion Guard Chorus1:03
2."A Beautiful Day (Ni Siku Nzuri)"Beau Black2:16
3."Zuka Zama"Bunga1:57
4."Tonight We Strike"Janja, Mzingo & Hyenas1:56
5."Kion's Lament"Kion3:24
6."Here Comes the Lion Guard"Beau Black2:28
7."We're the Same (Sisi Ni Sawa)"Kion & Jasiri2:33
8."Outta the Way"Janja, Cheezi & Chungu2:00
9."Duties of the King"Simba & Zazu2:01
10."Bunga the Wise"Timon, Pumbaa & Bunga1:41
11."My Own Way"Fuli2:18
12."Jackal Style"Reirei2:10
13."Panic and Run"Janja, Cheezi, & Chungu1:34
14."It Is Time"Beau Black3:01
15."Call of the Guard (Full Version)"The Lion Guard Chorus4:21
Total length:34:43

A second soundtrack release entitled The Lion Guard: Disney Junior Music was released digitally on September 1, 2017.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m "Lion King spinoff voice cast includes Rob Lowe, Gabrielle Union, James Earl Jones, and more - EW.com". Entertainment Weekly's EW.com.
  2. ^ "Mercury Filmworks". Archived from the original on 2016-03-04.
  3. ^ "Disney's The Lion King to Continue with The Lion Guard". ComingSoon.net.
  4. ^ a b Beck, Jerry (October 9, 2015). "Disney's "The Lion Guard: Return Of The Roar" Set For Nov. 22 Debut". Animation Scoop. Indiewire. Retrieved October 9, 2015.
  5. ^ a b Wagmeister, Elizabeth (December 9, 2015). "Disney's 'Lion King' Revival Series 'The Lion Guard' to Premiere in January". Variety. Retrieved December 10, 2015.
  6. ^ a b c d Brett, Susan (February 8, 2016). "EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: Disney's The Lion Guard creator Ford Riley talks new Lion King sequel". TVdaily.com. Retrieved August 21, 2016.
  7. ^ a b c "Lion King spin-off The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar sneak peek - EW.com". Entertainment Weekly's EW.com.
  8. ^ a b c McCarthy, Tyler (August 12, 2015). "'Lion King' Sequel Series 'The Lion Guard' To Debut On Disney With Several Original Characters Recast". International Business Times. Retrieved September 15, 2015.
  9. ^ a b c Beck, Jerry (August 12, 2015). "FIRST LOOK: Disney Channel's "The Lion Guard"". Animation Scoop. Indiewire. Retrieved August 14, 2015.
  10. ^ "David Oyelowo to Play Scar in 'The Lion Guard'". Retrieved 24 May 2018.
  11. ^ "Emma Bunton will star in Disney Junior's The Lion Guard". The List. August 23, 2016. Retrieved August 23, 2016.
  12. ^ https://owlcation.com/stem/Meet-Zoe-The-Rare-Golden-Zebra
  13. ^ https://www.horsetalk.co.nz/2017/08/09/golden-zebra-zoe-dies-hawaii/
  14. ^ "The Lion King Getting Sequel TV Series, The Lion Guard, On Disney Junior". E! Online.
  15. ^ Fritz, Ben (June 9, 2014). "Disney Junior Plans Preschool Series Based on 'The Lion King' (Exclusive)". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved June 28, 2016.
  16. ^ "Catalog Overview". abovethetreeline.com.
  17. ^ "Disney Channel, Disney XD & Disney Junior Stars Set for 2015 D23 EXPO". Broadway World. June 11, 2015. Retrieved June 11, 2015.
  18. ^ Steinberg, Brian (August 12, 2015). "Disney to Revive 'Lion King' With 'Lion Guard' TV Series". Variety. Variety Media. Retrieved August 12, 2015.
  19. ^ a b Kelley, Shamus (December 12, 2017). "How Does A Disney Junior Show Tell Compelling Stories?". denofgeek.com. Retrieved January 26, 2018.
  20. ^ a b Dickson, Jeremy (November 12, 2015). "The Lion Guard director dishes on how Disney re-animated a classic". kidscreen.com. Retrieved April 27, 2016.
  21. ^ Dickson, Jeremy (January 8, 2015). "Disney's The Lion Guard gets short-form spinoff". kidscreen.com. Retrieved April 27, 2016.
  22. ^ "Disney's The Lion Guard: Return Of The Roar Primetime Television Movie Event Premieres Sunday, November 22 on Disney Channel" (Press release). Toronto: Corus Entertainment. October 9, 2015. Retrieved October 26, 2015.
  23. ^ "Disney Junior's The Lion Guard, an Animated Series Featuring the Adventures of Kion — Simba and Nala's Second-Born Cub Debuts Sunday, January 17 at 11:30 a.m. ET/PT" (Press release). Toronto: Corus Entertainment. December 10, 2015. Retrieved February 5, 2016.
  24. ^ "The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar". TV Guide UK. Retrieved February 5, 2016.
  25. ^ "The Lion Guard debuts 13th April 2016 on Disney Junior". Primary Times. Retrieved February 5, 2016.
  26. ^ "The Lion Guard: the circle of life continues". Foxtel Insider. Foxtel. February 4, 2016. Retrieved February 5, 2016.
  27. ^ "The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar". Disney Southeast Asia. Retrieved April 7, 2016.
  28. ^ "The Lion Guard: Series Premiere". Disney Southeast Asia. Retrieved April 7, 2016.
  29. ^ "'The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar' on DVD with Exclusive Gift on February 23 – Stitch Kingdom". Stitch Kingdom.
  30. ^ Lambert, David (June 10, 2016). "The Lion Guard – 'Unleash The Power': Disney's Press Release for the First DVD!". tvshowsondvd.com. Archived from the original on June 12, 2016. Retrieved June 12, 2016.
  31. ^ "The Lion Guard – Life in the Pride Lands on Disney DVD January 10th". dapsmagic.com. November 2, 2016. Retrieved November 3, 2016.
  32. ^ Snook, Jay (January 8, 2018). "A Dangerous Foe Returns on 'The Lion Guard: The Rise of Scar'". goodmenproject.com. Retrieved January 9, 2018.
  33. ^ "The Lion Guard (Music from the TV Series) by Various Artists". iTunes Store. Retrieved January 7, 2016.

External links[edit]