John Kani to star in The Lion King remake

South African actor and director John Kani will be starring in the CG-animated re-imagining of the 1994 Walt Disney classic The Lion King

Entertainment website The Wrap reports that veteran South African actor John Kani will be voicing the monkey Rafiki in Jon Favreau’s remake of The Lion King. 

Kani, who played Black Panther’s father, King T’Chaka, in Captain America: Civil War, will lend his voice to the royal adviser to Mufasa and his family in the Pride Lands.

The original The Lion King is the biggest animated film in history, reports The Wrap, and the second highest-grossing of all time.

Award-winning musician Beyoncé is also in talks to voice Nala, reports Business Insider. She may also produce the film’s soundtrack, according to the website.

READ MORE: Celebrating SA icon Dr John Kani

“There’s still no word on the voice of Nala, though Beyoncé is believed to be nearing a huge deal to voice the latter character and serve as the Elton John of the new film by producing the soundtrack, which is expected to feature new songs from the Grammy-winning singer, as well as old favorites from the original The Lion King. That’s why Disney may be saving the Nala announcement for last, because the soundtrack has complicated negotiations and it’s nearly as important as the film itself.”

Kani and Beyoncé will be joing the star-studded cast, which includes American writer and actor Donald Glover as Simba, Seth Rogen as Pumba, Billy Eichner as Timon, John Oliver as Zazu, and James Earl Jones reprising the role of Mufasa.

The Lion King will open in theatres on 19 July 2019.