The Pumbaa we know and love almost wasn't Pumbaa in "The Lion King"
Just like peanut butter and jelly, milk and cookies, and Mickey and Minnie Mouse, Timon and Pumbaa simply go together. The iconic duo from 1994’s Disney classic, The Lion King, provide some much-needed comic relief for the coming-of-age story, and give Simba the guidance and nudge he needs to actually *become* the lion king. We all need people like these two in our lives — but, the Timon and Pumbaa with Simba during his adolescence years were almost different.
Pumbaa almost wasn’t Pumbaa.
We all know the sound of Ernie Sabella’s voice, especially when he bellows out, “Hakuna Matata, what a wonderful phrase.” However, initially Disney didn’t want to cast Sabella in the role, and had that happened, your childhood would sound SO different.
The next time the footage and voices were screened, it worked — and the jokes landed. And it’s a good thing the studio came around to liking Sabella in the end — even though he, himself, thought he might not make the final cut.
And even though Sabella won’t be Pumbaa in the next Lion King — you know, the live-action remake — he’s already campaigning for a different role.
If you’re ready to relive all the great Timon and Pumbaa moments, you can snag a copy of The Lion King on DVD, Blu-ray, and HD Digital right now.