Eschewing fairy tales and other literary sources, Disney's usual bread and butter for cartoon musicals, this animated feature about animal life in an African forest (1994) is based on an original script by Irene Mecchi, Jonathan Roberts, and Linda Woolverton. The result is a step toward multiculturalism and ecological correctness, though not without a certain amount of confusion. The movie is not quite as entertaining as The Little Mermaid or Beauty and the Beast, but it's nice for once to see the Disney studio steering clear of the white-bread xenophobia typified by Aladdin and seeking to enlarge its stylistic palette as well as its thematic address. The songs are by Tim Rice and Elton John, and some of the actors supplying the characters' voices are Rowan Atkinson, Matthew Broderick, Whoopi Goldberg, Jeremy Irons, James Earl Jones, Moira Kelly, and Cheech Marin; Roger Allers and Rob Minkoff directed.
Director: Roger Allers and Rob Minkoff
Writer: Irene Mecchi, Jonathan Roberts and Linda Woolverton
Producer: Don Hahn, Thomas Schumacher, Sarah McArthur and Alice Dewey
Cast: Rowan Atkinson, Matthew Broderick, Niketa Calame, Jim Cummings, Whoopi Goldberg, Robert Guillaume, Jeremy Irons, James Jones, Moira Kelly, Nathan Lane, Zoe Leader, Cheech Marin, Ernie Sabella, Madge Sinclair, Jonathan Taylor Thomas, Cathy Cavadini, Judi M. Durand, Daamen J. Krall, David McCharen, Philip Proctor, David J. Randolph, Jason Weaver, Frank Welker, Joseph Williams and Laura Williams