Barry Jenkins Is Directing a Live-Action Lion King Sequel

Photo: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

Naaaaaaants ingonyama bagithi baba! Barry Jenkins is directing a sequel to last year’s live-action Lion King (also known as Beyoncé Presents: The Lion King). Per Deadline, “The story will further explore the mythology of the characters, including Mufasa’s origin story.” The site, rather inexplicably, considering it doesn’t know the logline, says this Jenkins-directed sequel will “conjure memories of The Godfather: Part II, set on the African plain.” A release date has not yet been set, nor is there a date set for when production is expected to begin.

“Helping my sister raise two young boys during the ’90s, I grew up with these characters,” Jenkins said, according to Deadline. “Having the opportunity to work with Disney on expanding this magnificent tale of friendship, love and legacy while furthering my work chronicling the lives and souls of folk within the African diaspora is a dream come true.” Since directing If Beale Street Could Talk in 2018, Jenkins has been at work on an adaptation of Colson Whitehead’s The Underground Railroad for Amazon and will direct a biopic of Alvin Ailey. Jenkins’s partner, the director Lulu Wang, celebrated the Lion King news accordingly:

We can only hope Chauncey Wang-Jenkins scores a cameo.

Barry Jenkins Is Directing a Live-Action Lion King Sequel