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'The Lion King' is a deep part of our culture: Jon Favreau

It was a trip to Africa that pointed him in the direction of "The Lion King". The film will release in India on July 19 in English, Hindi, Tamil and Telugu.

'The Lion King' is a deep part of our culture: Jon Favreau

Los Angeles: Filmmaker Jon Favreau feels "The Lion King" has become a deep part of our culture and says he felt a tremendous responsibility while re-imagining the world of Disney's classic with the use of technology.

"It's such a beloved property. Disney has had tremendous success with the original animated version and then the Broadway musical. I knew that I had to be very careful with it. I felt a tremendous responsibility not to screw it up," Favreau said in a statement.

"I wanted to demonstrate that we could be respectful of the source material while bringing it to life using mind-blowing techniques and technologies," he added.

"The Jungle Book" fame director Favreau has re-imagined the world of Disney's 1994 classic to bring alive a live-action film. He has stayed true to the classic story of Simba and used pioneering filmmaking techniques to bring the iconic characters to the big screen in a whole new way.

It was a trip to Africa that pointed him in the direction of "The Lion King".

"I went on a safari to Africa six months prior to first talking to Disney about doing this film," recalled Favreau.

"I remember when a warthog ran by our safari vehicle, one of the people in our group started singing 'Hakuna Matata'. And then when we saw lions upon a rock, they all said, 'Oh, look, it looks like Lion King'. This story has become a frame of reference that everybody now knows and accepts.

"It pops up in music, on TV shows, in comedy routines, as part of sketches. It's continually referenced. It's such a deep part of our culture that it felt like there was a tremendous opportunity to build on that and to retell the story in a different medium."

The film will release in India on July 19 in English, Hindi, Tamil and Telugu.