The Lion Guard is an upcoming American animated television series that premiered with a one-hour movie, The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar, on November 22, 2015 which will be followed by a television series on Disney Junior on January 3, 2016. It will feature Kion, the son of Simba and Nala.
"Set in the African Savanna, The Lion Guard: Return of the Roar follows Kion as he assembles the members of the Lion Guard," a news release for the show reads. "Throughout the movie and the series, the diverse team of young animals will learn how to utilize each of their unique abilities to solve problems and accomplish tasks to maintain balance within the Circle of Life, while also introducing young viewers to the vast array of animals that populate the prodigious African landscape."
- Kion (Max Charles) - the young son of Simba and Nala who assembles a group of animals to protect the Pride Lands.
- Simba (Rob Lowe) - the king of the Pride Lands, and the father of Kion and Kiara.
- Nala (Gabrielle Union) - the queen of the Pride Lands, and the mother of Kion and Kiara.
- Kiara (Eden Riegel) - the future queen of the Pride Lands, and the older sister of Kion.
- Rafiki (Khary Payton) - the shaman of the Pride Lands.
- Zazu (Jeff Bennett) - the majordomo of the Pride Lands.
- Timon (Kevin Schon) - a meerkat who is the childhood friend of Simba, and the adoptive uncle of Bunga.
- Pumbaa (Ernie Sabella) - a warthog who is the childhood friend of Simba, and the adoptive uncle of Bunga.
- Mufasa (James Earl Jones) - the father of Simba who died in the original film, set to appear in spirit form.
- Bunga (Joshua Rush) - a honey badger who is part of the Lion Guard and the adoptive son of Timon and Pumbaa.
- Fuli (Diamond White) - a cheetah who is part of the Lion Guard.
- Beshte (Dusan Brown) - a hippopotamus who is part of the Lion Guard.
- Ono (Atticus Shaffer) - an egret who is part of the Lion Guard.
- Mzingo (Johnny Rees) - a hungry Rüppell's griffon vulture and Janja's majordomo
- Zuri (Madison Pettis) - a female lioness cub
- Tiifu (Sarah Hyland) - an another female lioness cub
- Janja (Andrew Kishino) - a cunning hyena leader of the Outlands
- Cheezi (Vargus Mason) - a crazy hyena
- Chungu (Kevin Schon) - a touchy hyena
- Makuu (Blair Underwood) - The leader of the crocodiles
- Pua (Gerald C. Rivers) - a crocodile who is the former leader of the crocodiles
- Basi (Kevin Michael Richardson) - Beshte's father who is the leader of the hippos
- Reirei (Ana Gasteyer) - a clever and scheming jackal who wreaks havoc in the Pride Lands
- Jasiri (Maia Mitchell) - a friendly spotted hyena ally of Kion
- Ushari (Christian Slater) - a snake
- Kovu (Jason Marsden) - Scar's adoptive son and heir and Nuka and Vitani's younger brother
- Nuka (Andy Dick) - Kovu and Vitani's older brother
- Vitani (Lacey Chabert) - Nuka's younger sister and Kovu's older sister
The series' announcement came after a meeting between Disney Junior general manager Nancy Kanter and Disney chief executive Robert Iger. Iger suggested to Kanter that Disney Junior should consider producing content to celebrate the 20th anniversary of The Lion King in 2014. Disney has shown early footage to young test audiences, who were able to make suggestions, such as adjusting the look of the hyenas. Disney Consumer Products is to launch a line of toys to tie into the television series.
At least five book titles based on the series are planned for release in January 2016: Kion, Pride of the Pridelands, Can't Wait To Be Queen, Bunga's Big Adventure, Meet the New Guard and Kion's Animal Alphabet.
- This will be the second TV Series to be based on The Lion King, followed by the Timon & Pumbaa TV series.
- Due to the absence of Kiara and Kion, Kovu and Vitani as cubs, this series will take place sometime in the middle of The Lion King II: Simba's Pride.
- The show uses the same animation as Jake and the Never Land Pirates.