Long before live-action remakes dominated our movie screens, 2D animated films were all the rage. One in particular, 1994's "The Lion King," defined a generation with its fun melodies and powerful story. In celebration of the July 19, 2019, release of the photorealistic computer-animated "The Lion King" remake, Wonderwall.com is checking up on the cast of the original film. Keep reading to find out what the original movie's voice actors and actresses are up to today!
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Matthew Broderick voiced Simba, the son of Mufasa and Sarabi who grows up to become king of the Pride Lands, in 1994's "The Lion King."
Matthew Broderick went on to star in a number of films including "The Cable Guy," "Godzilla," "Inspector Gadget," "You Can Count on Me," "Bee Movie" and "The Tale of Despereaux." He's also made a name for himself on Broadway, appearing in "The Producers" and "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying," for which he won a Tony Award. Next up, Matthew will star in the TV series "Daybreak." Three years after "The Lion King" came out, he married Sarah Jessica Parker. The couple share three children: son James and twin daughters Loretta and Tabitha.
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James Earl Jones voiced Mufasa, Simba's father and the former king of the Pride Lands, in 1994's "The Lion King."
James Earl Jones, who got his start in the 1960s, went on to appear in "The Sandlot 2," "Clear and Present Danger," "Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins," "Everwood" and more and voiced Darth Vader (again) in 2016's "Rogue One: A Star Wars Story." He's also starred in several Broadway plays including "On Golden Pond," "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" and "You Can't Take It with You." He reprised his role as Mufasa in the 2019 "Lion King" remake. James lost his wife, Cecilia Hart — whom he married in 1982 — in 2016. The pair share one son, Flynn Earl Jones.
Jeremy Irons voiced Scar, Mufasa's younger brother and Simba's uncle who takes the throne, in 1994's "The Lion King."
Today, Jeremy Irons is still one of Hollywood's top actors. He went on to star in "Lolita," "The Man in the Iron Mask," "The Merchant of Venice," "Being Julia," "Kingdom of Heaven," "Assassin's Creed," "Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice," "Justice League" and "Elizabeth I," for which he won a Golden Globe and an Emmy. He more recently starred in 2018's "An Actor Prepares" and is set to appear in the HBO series "Watchmen" in late 2019. Jeremy shares two sons — actor Max and photographer Samuel — with his wife of 41 years, Sinéad Cusack.
Moira Kelly voiced Nala, Simba's best friend and later wife and queen of the Pride Lands, in 1994's "The Lion King."
Moira Kelly has gone to appear in several films and TV shows since "The Lion King." She starred as Karen Roe on the teen drama "One Tree Hill," as Dorothy Day in "Entertaining Angels: The Dorothy Day Story" and as Mandy Hampton on the first season of "The West Wing." The actress more recently starred in the 2018 Lifetime movie "Girl in the Bunker." Moira married Texas businessman Steve Hewitt in 2000. The couple have welcomed two children, daughter Ella and son Eamon.
Nathan Lane voiced Timon, a wisecracking meerkat who takes in Simba and becomes one of his best friends, in 1994's "The Lion King."
Nathan Lane has continued to excel in television, film and theater. He's appeared in "Stuart Little," "Modern Family," "The Good Wife," "The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story," "The Producers" (for which he earned a Golden Globe nomination) and "Angels in America" (for which he won a Tony Award). He most recently starred in the 2019 black comedy "Gary: A Sequel to Titus Andronicus" on Broadway. Next up, Nathan will star in the "Penny Dreadful" spin-off series "Penny Dreadful: City of Angels." He tied the knot with his longtime partner, theater producer and writer Devlin Elliott, in November 2015.
Ernie Sabella voiced naive warthog Pumbaa, Timon's best friend who helps raise Simba, in 1994's "The Lion King."
Ernie Sabella has continued to expand his resume on the stage and on the screen. The actor has starred in several plays and musicals including "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum," "Chicago as Amos Hart," "Man of La Mancha" and "Sweet Charity" as well as films like "Mouse Hunt," "The Lion King II" and "The Challenger." He currently voices Pumbaa on the Disney Junior series "The Lion Guard." Ernie married computer programmer Cheryl Sabella in 1999.
Whoopi Goldberg voiced Shenzi, a sassy and short-tempered hyena who leads her pack, in 1994's "The Lion King."
Whoopi Goldberg is still the in-demand A-lister she was when "The Lion King" debuted. The EGOT winner went on to appear in "The Little Rascals," "Boys on the Side," "How Stella Got Her Groove Back," "Girl, Interrupted," "For Colored Girls," "Toy Story 3," "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" and "Nobody's Fool." She's served as a co-host on ABC's "The View" since 2007. Whoopi married third husband Lyle Trachtenberg in 1994; the couple divorced a year later. She has one daughter, Alexandrea Martin, whom she shares with her first husband, plus three grandchildren and one great-granddaughter.
Robert Guillaume voiced Rafiki, an old baboon who serves as shaman of the Pride Lands, in 1994's "The Lion King."
"Benson" star Robert Guillaume continued to work throughout the '90s and 2000s. The celebrated actor, who began performing in the 1950s, worked on projects including "Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child," "Spy Hard, "The Lion King II: Simba's Pride," "Sports Night," "Big Fish" and "The Lion King 1½." In 2013, he starred in his final film, "Off the Beach." Robert died of prostate cancer in October 2017 — a month before his 90th birthday. He left behind his wife of 31 years, Donna Brown, and four children.
Cheech Marin played Banzai, a hot-headed hyena prone to complaining, in 1994's "The Lion King."
After starring in "The Lion King," Cheech Marin went on to appear in "Tin Cup," "Once Upon a Time in Mexico," "Nash Bridges," "Judging Amy," the "Spy Kids" trilogy, the "Cars" trilogy and "Machete." He's voiced Quita Moz on the Disney Channel series "Elena of Avalor" since 2017. Cheech divorced his second wife, Patti Heid, in 2009 after 23 years of marriage. He wed Russian pianist Natasha Rubin later that year. The actor shares one child with his first wife, Darlene, and two children with Patti.
Rowan Atkinson voiced Zazu, a hornbill who serves as the king's majordomo, in 1994's "The Lion King."
Rowan Atkinson is best known for his portrayals of Mr. Bean and Johnny English. The British funnyman has appeared in three "Bean" projects — "Mr. Bean," "Bean" and "Mr. Bean's Holiday" — and the "Johnny English" movies "Johnny English," "Johnny English Reborn" and 2018's "Johnny English Strikes Again." He's also starred in "Love Actually," "The Thin Blue Line" and "Oliver!" Rowan shares two children, Ben and Lily, with former wife Sunetra Sastry, whom he divorced in 2015 after 25 years of marriage. He's now dating comedian Louise Ford, with whom he shares one daughter, Isla.
Madge Sinclair voiced Sarabi, Simba's mother and Mufasa's mate — the former queen of the Pride Lands — in 1994's "The Lion King."
Sadly, Madge Sinclair only appeared in a few more projects before her untimely death in 1995. The Emmy-winning "Gabriel's Fire" actress starred in "Me and the Boys" and "Dream On" before succumbing to leukemia after a 13-year battle with the illness. She left behind husband Dean Compton and sons Garry and Wayne.
Jim Cummings played Ed, a dim-witted hyena who doesn't talk and only communicates through laughter, in 1994's "The Lion King."
Jim Cummings went on to become one of Hollywood's most successful voice actors. The British star has worked on some of the most popular animated films of all time including "Pocahontas," "Hercules," "The Princess and the Frog," "Balto," "All Dogs Go to Heaven 2," "Antz," "The Road to El Dorado," "Shrek" and "Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius." He's well known for voicing Darkwing Duck, Dr. Robotnik from "Sonic the Hedgehog," Winnie the Pooh (since 1988), Tigger, Bonkers D. Bobcat and the Tasmanian Devil. He more recently starred in 2018's "Christopher Robin" and currently works on Disney's "Ducktales." Jim has two children with former wife Stephanie Cummings, whom he divorced in 2011 after 10 years of marriage, and two older children from his first marriage.