Disney is remaking one of its most beloved classics, The Lion King, in live action, and it’s using VR to help do so.
The Hollywood Reporter recently published a quote about the 2019 movie from VFX supervisor, Rob Legato.
“We are going to use a lot of virtual-reality tools so it feels akin to what you are looking at [if you were on a real set],” Legato said during a keynote talk at the NAB Show back in April. “You can walk around the set like a cameraman. [Wearing VR headsets,] the actors can now walk into a scene and see the other actors and trees … and because you are in 3D, you get a realistic sense [of the environment].”
Imagine actors walking onto a set and actually seeing the world they’re meant to be acting in, for example. Obviously, The Lion King will be using a lot of CGI and a lot of green screen, but with the help of VR the crew can get closer to the experience before it’s been properly assembled. The movie will star Donald Glover as Simba.
It’s not too surprising to learn the crew is using VR considering the reboot is being directed by Jon Favreau. Last year he teamed with Wevr to release a preview of a new VR series, Gnomes and Goblins.
Given that VR experiences released in support of other Disney live action remakes like The Jungle Book we wouldn’t be surprised to see a tie-in piece for The Lion King, too. Perhaps we could be baby Simba, held up in Rafiki’s arms as the animal kingdom bows down around us? That would certainly be a sight to remember.