Original “Lion King” Animators are Whining About Remake

In a Huffington Post article, animators from the original Lion King were asked what they thought about the new CGI remake, and some were none too pleased, with one animator saying “If you polled the crew of the original ‘Lion King,’ most of them would say, ‘Why? Did you really have to do that?’ It kind of hurts.” Another was quoted as saying “I will only get myself in trouble if I comment on the ‘other’ version.”

David Stephans, who was an animator on the original “Circle of Life” segment stated “It’s sort of sad that the stockholder is now in the room deciding what movies get made. … Disney’s now taken the cover off, and it’s now in your face: ‘Yeah, we just want to make money.’ That’s disappointing as an artist, from a studio that was founded on originality and art.”

While I understand to a certain extent, do they get upset when the characters end up as plush toys or on lunch boxes? Do they get upset when they become characters in the parks or when kids dress up like them for Halloween? The fact is that the writers, producers, animators, editors, etc. are hired hands. The studio paid them to create something for them, which the studio owns. That said, the studio can do whatever the heck they want with them. If that means putting them in a different medium with other hired hands with skills working in that medium, they have every right to.

As far as it just being a cash grab, well I’m afraid to let you know that the original was a cash grab too. EVERYTHING EVERY studio does is a cash grab. That’s the point of the entire industry. You worked on an amazing film for one of the best, if not the best, animation studios in the world. You are (or were) at the very top of your industry. Stop being whiny babies about it. And by the way, Disney kind of ripped off  Kimba the White Lion, so what you did wasn’t exactly original to begin with, so you’re being a bit hypocritical, wouldn’t you say?

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