Beyonce confirmed the role on her Facebook account in a post that contained the rest of the voice cast, which also revealed that Keegan-Michael Key will be playing a hyena named Kamari.
Variety first reported that Beyonce had the offer for the role earlier this year, and now it looks like the deal has closed.
The star-studded voice cast also includes Donald Glover as Simba, James Earl Jones as Mufasa (reprising his role from the 1994 original), Chiwetel Ejiofor as Scar, Alfre Woodard as Simba’s mother Sarabi, John Oliver as Zazu, John Kani as Rafiki, Florence Kasumba as Shenzi, Eric André as Azizi, and Billy Eichner and Seth Rogen as Timon and Pumbaa. JD McCrary and Shahadi Wright Joseph will play young Simba and young Nala, respectively.
Favreau, who directed “The Jungle Book” for the studio, helms from a script by Jeff Nathanson, adapted from the 1994 screenplay by Irene Mecchi, Jonathan Roberts, and Linda Woolverton. Favreau, Jeffrey Silver, and Karen Gilchrist are producing, with Tom Peitzman and Thomas Schumacher exec producing, and John Bartnicki co-producing.
“It is a director’s dream to assemble a talented team like this to bring this classic story to life,” said Favreau in a statement.
“The Lion King” will hit theaters on July 19, 2019.