The Lion King connection in The Art of Andreas Deja exhibit #TheLionKing #Waltagram #PixarCocoEvent

After learning that The Lion King will join the Walt Disney Signature Collection on Digital and on Blu-ray this month, I couldn't wait to visit "The Art of Andreas Deja" exhibit at The Walt Disney Family Museum during my #PixarCocoEvent trip to San Francisco.


Note: Disney and Pixar invited me on this all expense paid trip for the Disney*Pixar COCO Event. While I will share different events and activities during the trip, any personal views expressed are always 100% my own.



You might wonder who's Andreas Deja? But you'll be surprised to find out, you already know him from his work as a animator on a few famous Disney characters and films. Including Scar from The Lion King!




During my walk through of "The Art of Andreas Deja" exhibit, I had the chance to see many of original artworks including paper sketches and maquettes of Deja’s most iconic Disney characters.

You can really see the detail that Deja included in this first pieces while developing the ideas for the animation version on film. He really caught the look and feel of Scar in each sketch. But then Deja has been studying and drawing for years before being officially hired by Walt Disney Animation Studios.

In 1967, when Deja was 13 years old and living in Germany, Walt Disney’s The Jungle Book inspired him to become an animator for the Walt Disney Animation Studios. He wrote the company a now well-known letter to inquire about the application process, and he began to realize the dedication and skill it would take to get there.

“The day I received a letter back from Walt Disney Productions expressing the necessity to become a master in the mechanics of drawing, it lit a fire in me to truly become an outstanding animator,” said Deja. “After years of art school and dedicating my personal time to studying animal anatomy and behavior, I was accepted into the animation training program at The Walt Disney Studios in August 1980 and didn’t look back once.”




The exhibit also highlighted many other works of Deja. It was surreal to imagine how Deja took his ideas from these sketches into the various animated filmed I watch with my family over the years.

It really shows why Andreas Deja is one of the most accomplished and versatile character animators working today. He's iconic Disney characters include menacing villains such as Scar and Jafar to larger-than-life muscle men like Gaston and Hercules, and the much beloved Mama Odie and Lilo Pelekai.


In addition to his work for The Walt Disney Studios, Deja is known for independent projects, including his upcoming short film Mushka. The film—featuring a young girl and her tiger in “a story of love and sacrifice set in Russia”—is animated in a colored pencil style. Art from Mushka is showcased in this new exhibition, along with Deja’s Disney application portfolio and wire-frame sculptures.

On view from March 23 to October 4, 2017, "Deja View: The Art of Andreas Deja" is a must see at The Walt Disney Family Museum before it ends.

To learn more visit - www.waltdisney.org/deja-view







Audiences will fall in love all over again with the treasured classic, and a new generation of fans will laugh with Timon and Pumbaa, cry with Simba and Mufasa, burst into song, and find their place in the “Circle of Life.”

The Walt Disney Signature Collection release includes over three hours of classic bonus material and exclusive, brand new features inviting viewers to sing along with the film’s award-winning music, observe recording sessions, step inside the story room, witness the evolution of a villain, and join Nathan Lane (voice of Timon) and Matthew Broderick (voice of Adult Simba) for an extended conversation regarding the legacy of “The Lion King.”

BLU-RAY and DIGITAL* Bonus Features:

  • Brand New Sing-Along Version 
  • Audio Commentary – View the film with commentary by producer Don Hahn and co-directors Roger Allers and Rob Minkoff. 
  • Visualizing a Villain – Against a backdrop of live dancers and the animated “Be Prepared” sequence, artist David Garibaldi paints a masterpiece of evil. 
  • The Recording Sessions – Watch rare footage of the actors recording their roles, matched with the final animation. Intro by Roger Allers and Rob Minkoff. 
  • Nathan and Matthew: The Extended Lion King Conversation – Nathan Lane (Timon) and Matthew Broderick (Adult Simba) offer candid and hilarious insights into their Lion King experiences. 
  • Inside the Story Room – Co-directors Roger Allers and Rob Minkoff present archival footage of five original story pitches.
    • Circle of Life – See how color creates emotion and meaning in the film's iconic opening.
    • Simba & Nala – See how elements proposed in story meetings evolve into what appears onscreen.
    • Simba Takes Nala Out to Play – …And, sometimes what seems funny in story meetings never makes it into the film!
    • Hakuna Matata – Co-directors Roger Allers and Rob Minkoff sing, act and dance their hearts out as they pitch the "Hakuna Matata" sequence.
    • Rafiki and Reflecting Pool – Co-directors Roger Allers & Rob Minkoff pitch a sequence that became the emotional heart of The Lion King to Producer Don Hahn.
  • Music & More – Sing along to your favorite songs from the movie!
    • “Circle of Life”
    • “I Just Can’t Wait to Be King”
    • “Be Prepared”
    • “Hakuna Matata”
    • “Can You Feel the Love Tonight”
  • Galleries
  • Visual Development – Explore a gallery of striking artwork that inspired the movie's look and feel.
  • Character Design – Trace the development of the film's unforgettable characters through early concept art drawings.
  • Storyboards – Examine storyboards created in the development of “The Lion King.”
  • Layouts – Feast your eyes on layouts created in the development of “The Lion King.”
  • Backgrounds & Layouts – Journey through a gallery of landscape paintings that shaped the world of “The Lion King.”
  • Classic Bonus Features (Digital Only) – These offerings from prior home entertainment releases include hours of bonus material, such as bloopers, audio commentary, deleted and alternate scenes, and in-depth journeys into the music, film, story, animals and stage show.

To learn more, visit - www.movies.disney.com/The-Lion-King
Facebook: www.facebook.com/DisneyTheLionKing

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