The Disney films of the ’90s, are some of the most instrumental parts of our childhood, specifically the 1994 classic The Lion King. The incredible drama of Shakespearean proportions (it is influenced by Hamlet, after all) taught us about family, friendship, and the importance of living worry-free.
Let’s face it, we *all* wish we were living our best lives like Pumbaa and Timon, who were the true embodiment of “Hakuna Matata.” The Academy Award-nominated song has definitely stood the test of time — constantly reminding us to forget about our worries — but it turns out the version we heard was a little bit different from the original cut of the song.
In a new behind-the-scenes look at the iconic song, directors Rob Minkoff and Roger Allers revealed that there was a meerkat verse of the song that was cut sadly cut.
But after listening to it…maybe that’s a good thing?
In anticipation for The Lion King‘s re-release on DVD and Blu-ray (it’s out on digital HD right now!!) Minkoff and Allers explained why the verse never made the final cut.
The clip shows Minkoff (and Allers) showing off some serious pipes while performing the verse for Disney animators and crew members. According to the directors, “Hakuna Matata” originally began with a lengthy solo sung by meerkat Timon (voiced by Nathan Lane), recounting his mundane life in his meerkat colony. Instead, the final cut of the song begins with the iconic chorus, followed by a dramatic (and hilarious) verse surrounding Pumbaa’s unfortunate gassy situation.
(Fortunately, we *do* eventually learn about Timon’s meerkat colony in charming direct-to-video sequel/prequel The Lion King: 1 1/2.)
What we love most about Minkoff and Allers’ behind the scenes clip (in addition to their killer ’90s get-ups) is that even though the meerkat verse got cut from the final version of “Hakuna Matata”, the spirit of the song is very much intact.
With a new live-action version of The Lion King set to grace the big screen in 2019, we’re *loving* the opportunity to relive the 1994 classic. Now, we’re going to be listening to “Hakuna Matata” on repeat ALL day. Sorry, not sorry.