Over the weekend, Disney made a couple of important cast announcements for both of their hotly anticipated offerings, The Lion King and Mary Poppins. Disney had already created a buzz with the announcement of these two remakes which has now skyrocketed for these re-imagined childhood favourites. The stakes are high for Disney, so only the best acting talents will do.

In the case you have been living under a rock of late, The Jungle Book director Jon Favreau will be taking the helm of the all new live-action reimaging from Disney, The Lion King. After the huge success of The Oscar-nominated The Jungle Book last year which saw critics and audiences salivating over the Favreau’s visually stunning production it was a complete no-brainer that he should be leading the pack.

Related: Jon Favreau on The Jungle Book

We couldn’t be happier to hear the great James Earl Jones will reprise the role of Mufasa, which he made famous in the 1994 animated film. Joining Earl Jones is one of the hottest talents around in Hollywood right now, Donald Glover, who will next be on our cinematic screens in Spiderman: Homecoming, who will be voicing the adult Simba.

Jon Favreau took to social media to make the announcements.

Mary Poppins Returns Casting News

With a scheduled US release of Christmas day 2018, Mary Poppins Returns may seem an age away but the all new sequel that will come 54 years after the 1964 original which starred Julia Andrews and Dick Van Dyke, has already started filming in the UK’s very own Shepperton Studios. It comes with no great surprise that Disney has managed to nab one of the industry’s finest acting talents in the form of Angela Lansbury. Lansbury will feature as the Balloon Lady, a treasured character from PL Travers’ series of Mary Poppins children’s books.

A five-time Tony Award® winner and the recipient of an honorary Academy Award®, Angela Lansbury’s career spans over a tremendous 70 years, you would have thought she needed the rest by now. Lansbury is no stranger to a Disney film after starring in the 1971 “Bedknobs and Broomsticks” and voiced Mrs. Potts in the 1991 animated classic “Beauty and the Beast.

Disney Cast Announcements

Directed and produced by Rob Marshall (“Into the Woods,” “Chicago”), and  with a cast that already includes  Emily Blunt (“The Girl on the Train,” “Into the Woods”), Lin-Manuel Miranda (“Hamilton,” “Moana”), Ben Whishaw (“Spectre”), Emily Mortimer (“Hugo”) and Julie Walters (“Harry Potter” films) with Colin Firth (“The King’s Speech”) and Meryl Streep (“Florence Foster Jenkins”) this re-imaging is sure to appeal to not only an older audience who know the original all too well but a whole new younger generation too.

In a time of a nostalgia revival, there is certainly one thing you can say about Disney, when they find a winning formula they stick with it, pleasing not only their bankers but audiences around the globe. The Lion King and Mary Poppins Returns are set to be sure fire winners.

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Features and News Writer at HeyUGuys, Once failed wannabe actress, Ex-music industry veteran who once dabbled in Artist Management, and now Film Journalist extraordinaire. My love for the arts has seen my fingers in many pies but my love of Film won the battle. Current work credits include Film Journalist/Writer at HeyUGuys, Film Editor at Flavourmag, London Live's London Film Club and DIY Magazine. Previous work credits contributor at The Voice Newspaper, FlickFeast, MyFilmClub and film review slot on radio.