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[Entertainment News]
Walt Disney Company Africa: "“We are thrilled to be launching this screening initiative with our partners and creating access for thousands of learners to see this exciting new film that is so rich with heritage and connections to this continent, be it through the characters and landscapes depicted or through the iconic music.”
Photo: YouTube

Grammy-award winning singer Beyonce Knowles-Carter, who plays Nala in the Lion King, has also released an album entitled "The Lion King:The Gift" to coicide with new Lion King film release...

In celebration of the release of Disney’s The Lion King, The Walt Disney Company Africa, in collaboration with Hyundai Santa Fe, FNB and Attacq Foundation has launched The Lion King Screening Programme that will see up to 10,000 high school learners from under-served communities across the country experiencing the ground breaking new film.

Facilitated by Youthstart Foundation, a division of youth development organisation Primestars, the students will be transported to Ster-Kinekor theatres in fourteen national centres over four weekends in August to experience the pioneering technology and breath taking storytelling and visuals from the all-new film. The learners will be provided with a food pack donated by Makro as well as a cold drink and popcorn as they follow the adventure on the big screen.

The Endangered Wildlife Trust (EWT) will also be participating in the screening programme by engaging the learners in a discussion on conservation in general, as well as the urgent issue of the plight of lions on the African continent. In the 25 years since Disney released the original version of The Lion King, half of the continent’s lion population has been lost, due to destruction of habitats, loss of prey and poaching. Today, it is estimated that only 20 000 lions currently remain.

In addition, each learner will be given a special-edition Lion King–themed information pack to take home. This pack contains informative breakdowns of the real-life animals they have seen brought to life in the film, delving into topics such as positive goal-setting, the “circle of life” and a special section where the learners can make their own conservation pledge.

“We are thrilled to be launching this screening initiative with our partners and creating access for thousands of learners to see this exciting new film that is so rich with heritage and connections to this continent, be it through the characters and landscapes depicted or through the iconic music,” says Christine Service, Senior Vice President and Country Manager for The Walt Disney Company Africa. “Our hope is that this initiative will be one step towards inspiring and equipping a new generation of conservationists.”

In June, The Walt Disney Company launched a global conservation campaign to raise awareness of the crisis facing lions and other wildlife across Africa. The Lion King “Protect the Pride” campaign focuses on protecting and revitalizing lion populations and the habitats they need to thrive. Disney has already donated more than $1.5 million to the Wildlife Conservation Network’s (WCN) Lion Recovery Fund (LRF) and its partners and will make additional grants as well as invite fans to help double the donation for a total contribution of up to $3 million. Wildlife Conservation Network’s (WCN) Lion Recovery Fund’s vision to double the lion population by 2050.

Disney’s The Lion King is in cinemas everywhere from 19 July in 3D.

The Walt Disney Company, together with its subsidiaries is a diversified worldwide entertainment company with operations in four business segments: Media Networks; Parks, Experiences and Products; Studio Entertainment; and Direct-to-Consumer and International. Disney is a Dow 30 company and had annual revenues of $59.4 billion in its last fiscal year (FY18). Seeking to entertain, inform and inspire people around the globe through the power of unparalleled storytelling, The Walt Disney Company has been in Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) for over 80 years, employing thousands of people across the region and reaching consumers in more than 130 countries. The Walt Disney Company’s iconic brands - including Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Lucasfilm, National Geographic, FOX, FOX Sports and ESPN - are experienced diversely across the region in cinemas, on TV screens, online, at retail, in Disney Stores and at Disneyland Paris.

Disney’s “The Lion King, directed by Jon Favreau, journeys to the African savanna where a future king is born. Simba idolizes his father, King Mufasa, and takes to heart his own royal destiny. But not everyone in the kingdom celebrates the new cub’s arrival. Scar, Mufasa’s brother—and former heir to the throne—has plans of his own. The battle for Pride Rock is ravaged with betrayal, tragedy and drama, ultimately resulting in Simba’s exile. With help from a curious pair of newfound friends, Simba will have to figure out how to grow up and take back what is rightfully his. The all-star cast includes Donald Glover as Simba, Beyoncé Knowles-Carter as Nala, James Earl Jones as Mufasa, Chiwetel Ejiofor as Scar, Seth Rogen as Pumbaa and Billy Eichner as Timon. Utilizing pioneering filmmaking techniques to bring treasured characters to life in a whole new way, Disney’s “The Lion King” roars into theaters on July 19, 2019.

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