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The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar
The Lion Guard Poster
Title
The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar
Director
Howy Parkins
Producer
Ford Riley
Composer
Christopher Willis
Beau Black
Starring
Max Charles
Joshua Rush
Diamond White
Dusan Brown
Atticus Shaffer
Distributor
The Walt Disney Company
Released
November 22, 2015
Followed by
The Lion Guard

It is time.
—Tagline

The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar is a television film that was released on November 22, 2015.[1] It was followed by a television series on Disney Junior that premiered January 2016.[2]

Synopsis

The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar follows Simba's son, Kion, as he assembles a group of animals to protect the Pride Lands known as the Lion Guard. Disney Junior general manager Nancy Kanter has described the film and following series as being "kind of like The Lion King meets The Avengers."[3][4]

Plot

The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar begins by introducing Simba, the king of the Pride Lands, and his daughter, Kiara. At the start of the film, Simba is teaching his daughter about life as a monarch, but their lesson is interrupted by Kion, Simba's youngest cub, who is playing Baobab Ball with his best friend, Bunga. Kiara expresses annoyance with her little brother, who in turn teases her for being so uptight, until Simba separates the two and suggests that Kion play somewhere else.

Bunga and Kion take their game across the Pride Lands, chasing each other through rivers, waving fields of grass, and flocks of birds. Finally, their game takes them to the edge of the Pride Lands, where they lose their ball in the Outlands. Despite Kion's dire warnings, Bunga jumps down to retrieve it. It just so happens that Janja, leader of the hyenas, is watching from the shadows, and he orders his minions Cheezi and Chungu to bring him the honey badger.

When the hyenas attempt to seize Bunga, Kion roars so loudly that the hyenas drop him, and he jumps to safety. Once the danger is past, Bunga and Kion begin to walk back toward Pride Rock, with both in shock of how powerful Kion's roar had been. Meanwhile, Nala, Rafiki, and Simba have overheard Kion's roar and come to the conclusion that he is the new leader of the Lion Guard. Though Simba is hesitant to trust Kion with such a huge responsibility, Nala encourages him to listen to Rafiki.

2016-05-15-02 02 48

In an attempt to save his friend Bunga from the hyenas, Kion uses the Roar of the Elders for the first time

No sooner has Nala left when Bunga and Kion return to Pride Rock, curious as to what Rafiki and Simba are talking about. Rafiki proceeds to tell Kion about the Roar of the Elders, and Simba leads his son to the Lair of the Lion Guard, where he explains that Scar used to lead the Guard until he used his gift for evil and lost the power of the Roar of the Elders forever. At the story's conclusion, Kion is in awe, and Simba tasks him with gathering the rest of his team.

Kion starts by asking his best friend Bunga to join the Lion Guard, and Bunga eagerly accepts. Unbeknownst to the two, they are being spied on by Mzingo, a vulture who is friendly with Janja. As Mzingo flies off, Bunga and Kion hear a cry for help from Kiara's friend Zuri, and Bunga resolves to save her as their first act as the Lion Guard. Meanwhile, Zuri has her claws stuck in a tree, while Kiara and their friend Tiifu look on. Timon and Pumbaa soon arrive, ready to help pry Zuri's claws out of the log, but Bunga interrupts and knocks Zuri to the ground, where she uncovers a lair of bugs. Timon and Pumbaa jump in with delight just as Kion arrives and watches the chaos in shock.

2016-05-15-02 07 13

Rafiki tells Kion the story of the Lion Guard's downfall under Scar

As Kiara and Tiifu comfort Zuri, Bunga proclaims that Simba has tasked Kion with leading the Lion Guard. When Kiara asks what Bunga means, Kion explains his new position to her, and Bunga exclaims that he plans to join the Lion Guard, too. He then asks his adopted uncles if he has their permission. At first, the two are hesitant to let him put himself in such danger, but Bunga eventually convinces them by singing "Zuka Zama". Kion adds that Bunga is the bravest animal he knows, and Timon and Pumbaa congratulate their adopted son.

Meanwhile, in the Outlands, Mzingo has reported back to Janja and explained that Kion is assembling a new Lion Guard. Horrified, Janja resolves to take down all the animals he can and sings "Tonight We Strike" to his eager minions.

Back in the Pride Lands, Bunga and Kion are recruiting the other members of the Lion Guard. First, they find Ono, who is tracking down a snail. Bunga interrupts his hunt and invites him to come with them. With Ono now at their side, Bunga and Kion go to find Beshte, who is creating a water slide for his hippopotamus friends, and ask him to join them as well.

2016-05-15-02 25 15

Kion assembles his new team for the first time

Together, the four go to find the last recruit, Fuli the cheetah. Though Bunga tries to catch up to her, she dashes ahead of him, with an angry troop of baboons in pursuit. Kion, who is watching from a ridge with Beshte and Ono, suddenly gets an idea. Under Kion's instruction, Ono guides Fuli to Beshte, whom she hops over, and the baboons ram into Beshte's massive bulk.

At last, Kion explains why he's gathered his friends, and Bunga encourages him to demonstrate the Roar of the Elders. Though reluctant at first, Kion attempts to roar for his friends, but all that comes out is a squeak. While Bunga, Beshte, and Ono are confused at this turn of events, Fuli laughs at Kion, jeering at him for his pathetic roar.

Suddenly, Zazu swoops overhead with Kiara, Simba, and Tiifu in tow. Simba thanks Kiara for her direction and then comes forward to speak with Kion. After questioning Kion on his choice of teammates, Simba admonishes his son for choosing animals who are not lions. He then encourages his son to take his duty as seriously as Kiara takes hers and strides away, leaving Kion confused and defeated.

2016-05-15-02 31 21

Kion encounters the spirit of his grandfather, Mufasa, who encourages him to trust his instincts

Meanwhile, Kiara and Tiifu are stalking a herd of gazelles. In the midst of their hunt, Kiara notices Mzingo circling overhead while Janja leads his clan into the heart of the herd. Suspicious, Kiara sends Tiifu to fetch her father while she stays behind to keep watch over the herd.

As Kiara spies on the hyenas, Kion moves off by himself, still upset over his treatment at the paws of his father. He sings "Kion's Lament", expressing his confusion over the recent turn of events, and encounters the ghost of his grandfather, Mufasa, who inspires him to trust his instincts.

Just as Kion finishes singing, Bunga races up to him, clamoring that Janja and his clan have invaded the Pride Lands. Kion races to join his friends and asks them if they will join the Lion Guard. With their consent, he gifts them each with the mark of the Guard and then leads them into battle against the hyenas. Together, the five take down Janja, Mzingo, and his hyenas, though the herd continues to race forward, putting Kiara in peril.

2016-05-15-02 39 27

The Lion Guard successfully drives Janja and his clan out of the Pride Lands

This time, only Bunga and Fuli race forward, with Bunga riding on Fuli's back to Kiara's side. Once he lands safely on the rock Kiara's crouched behind, Bunga farts, redirecting the herd in either direction, and Kiara is delivered safely to her parents.

With his sister safe, Kion confronts Janja and uses the Roar of the Elders to send him and his clan scurrying back to the Outlands. Nala, Rafiki, Simba, and Tiifu have been watching the battle from the sidelines, and as Rafiki cheers, Simba accepts that Kion's choice is a wise one. He then proclaims that it is time, time for the Lion Guard.

Characters

Character Information Voiced by

Development

The film's announcement came after a meeting between Disney Junior general manager Nancy Kanter and Disney chief executive Robert Iger. Iger suggested to Kanter that Disney Junior should consider producing content to celebrate the twentieth anniversary of The Lion King in 2014. Disney has shown early footage to young test audiences, who were able to make suggestions, such as adjusting the look of the hyenas. Disney Consumer Products is to launch a line of toys to tie into the television series.[2]

On August 12, 2015, a sneak peek of the film was released that featured Kion rescuing Bunga from a pair of hyenas.[5] The full scene was later released on August 16, 2015.[6] On October 9, 2015, it was confirmed that Return of the Roar will premiere on November 22, 2015 on Disney Channel.[1]

Video

External Links

Home Media

The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar was released on DVD on February 23, 2016.[7]

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 Beck, Jerry (October 9, 2015). Disney's "The Lion Guard: Return Of The Roar" Set For Nov. 22 Debut. Animation Scoop. Indiewire. Retrieved October 9, 2015.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Frtiz, Ben (June 10, 2014). Disney Junior Plans Preschool Series Based on ‘The Lion King’ (Exclusive). The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved June 10, 2014.
  3. Webb Mitovich, Mark. Disney Junior to Unleash Lion King Sequel Series. TV Line. Retrieved June 11, 2014.
  4. Hatwich, Chris. The Lion King Getting Sequel TV Series, The Lion Guard, On Disney Junior. E! Online. Retrieved on June 11, 2014.
  5. [1]
  6. [2]
  7. http://www.stitchkingdom.com/disney-the-lion-guard-return-of-the-roar-on-dvd-with-exclusive-gift-on-february-23-82287/

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