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'Lion King' sequel from director Barry Jenkins in development

Filmmaker Barry Jenkins is set to direct a new Lion King film for Disney. File Photo by Christine Chew/UPI
Filmmaker Barry Jenkins is set to direct a new "Lion King" film for Disney. File Photo by Christine Chew/UPI | License Photo

Sept. 29 (UPI) -- Disney is developing a follow-up to its 2019 photo-realistic remake of The Lion King with filmmaker Barry Jenkins attached to direct.

The sequel will touch on the early years of Mufasa, who was originally voiced by James Earl Jones in the 2019 film and the animated film from 1994.

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Jeff Nathanson is returning to pen the script. The 2019 film, from director Jon Favreau, grossed $1.5 billion globally.

Disney has not announced a release date or production start date for the sequel. It remains unknown if any of the cast from the 2019 film will be returning.

Donald Glover voiced Simba with Beyonce as Nala, Billy Eichner as Timon, Seth Rogen as Pumbaa and Chiwetel Ejiofor as Scar.

"Helping my sister raise two young boys during the 90s, I grew up with these characters. Having the opportunity to work with Disney on expanding this magnificent tale of friendship, love and legacy while furthering my work chronicling the lives and souls of folk within the African diaspora is a dream come true," Jenkins said in a statement.

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Jenkins is best known for helming Best Picture winner Moonlight and If Beal Street Could Talk.

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