Meet Kion, Simba’s second-born son who toplines Disney’s upcoming Lion King sequel, The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar. Before premiering as a TV movie late next month, the House of Mouse has showcased the first teaser for the spinoff, with plans to push ahead with a fully-fledged episodic series depending on its initial reception.
Primed to become the leader of the titular Lion Guard, it is Kion who is destined for greatness in the studio’s high-profile animation. Flying in the face of tradition, our impish protagonist drafts in his group of friends – comprised of a honey badger; a cheetah; a good-spirited hippo; and Ono, an intellectual egret – to help him govern the Pride Lands in a way that would make his father proud.
What separates Return of the Roar from the numerous direct-to-DVD stories is its eye-catching production values. Boasting a like-for-like aesthetic with the studio’s seminal 1994 animation, the follow-up earns the benefit of the doubt on looks alone, and the fact that it’s exploring new ground within the African savanna is heartening – as opposed to retreading the story of Simba, Mufasa and Scar.
Disney has slated The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar for a premiere on Sunday, November 22 at 7:00 p.m. ET/PT.
Set in the African savanna, “The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar” introduces Kion, the second-born cub of Simba and Nala, who is destined to become leader of the Lion Guard, a team of animals comprised of the Pride Lands’ fiercest, bravest, fastest, strongest and keenest of sight. As Kion looks to assemble the members of the new Lion Guard, he does not call upon a group of lions to serve with him as tradition dictates, but instead chooses some of his friends whom he believes best exemplify these heroic qualities – Bunga, a fearless honey badger; Fuli, a confident cheetah; Beshte, a friendly and good-spirited hippo; and Ono, an intellectual egret.