‘Lion King’ Trailer Debuts: Watch the Rise of the New King (Video)

James Earl Jones introduces a new generation to Simba

Disney’s live-action “Lion King” teaser trailer dropped on Thanksgiving Day, giving lions, meerkats, warthogs and even humans a cinematic surprise to be thankful for.

The trailer touches on familiar images from the animated version. But it all feels more real, thanks to spectacular CGI re-imaginings that accompany James Earl Jones’ narration, and introduce us to the hyperrealistic live-action versions of Simba, Rafiki and Scar.

Watch it above, if you somehow haven’t already.

The live-action “Lion King” lets us see images etched into our younger minds in an entirely new way — especially the moment when Rafiki holds up Simba to introduce him to the kingdom (and the world) for the first time.

The trailer debuted during the NFL matchup of the Dallas Cowboys and Washington Redskins, because releasing it during the Detroit Lions game would have been too obvious, we suppose. Director Jon Favreau tweeted it Thursday, as well.

The live-action adaptation of “The Lion King” will star Donald Glover as Simba, Beyonce Knowles-Carter as Simba’s friend-turned-love interest Nala, Jones as Mufasa and Chiwetel Ejiofor as Scar. Seth Rogen, Keegan-Michael Key, John Oliver, Billy Eichner and John Kani also star.

The original “Lion King” is one of the biggest animated films of all time: It grossed $968.8 million globally and won an Academy Award for the original song, “Can You Feel the Love Tonight,” as well as its original score by Hans Zimmer. Zimmer will also score the new “Lion King,” which will hit theaters on July 19, 2019.

Besides directing, Favreau is producing alongside Karen Gilchrist. Jeff Nathanson penned the screenplay based on the 1994 screenplay by Irene Mecchi, Jonathan Roberts and Linda Woolverton. Tom Peitzman and Thomas Schumacher are executive producing, while John Bartnicki is co-producing.

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