‘Be Prepared’ From Disney’s 1994 Version of ‘The Lion King’ Was Actually Sung by 2 Different Actors

The Lion King featured well-known artists like Elton John on its soundtrack. Scar’s song, “Be Prepared” actually featured two artists as the voice of this Disney villain. Here’s what we know about this song from Disney’s 1994 feature film.

Singer/songwriter Beyoncé arrives for the world premiere of Disney's 'The Lion King'
Singer/songwriter Beyoncé arrives for the world premiere of Disney’s ‘The Lion King’ | ROBYN BECK/AFP via Getty Images

Disney’s ‘The Lion King’ included several award-winning songs

Viewers met Simba, Nala, Timon, and Pumbaa with the 1994 feature film, The Lion King. This animated movie told the story of a lion cub destined to be the leader of his pride. After his father’s death, Simba ran from his past and, only after reuniting with his best friend and a very wise monkey, did he embrace his future. 

The original soundtrack for Disney’s animated film earned the Academy Awards for Best Original Score and Best Original Song. The Lion King itself received the Golden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy.

The Lion King eventually became a Broadway stage production, with Disney also releasing several sequels and the Disney Junior series The Lion Guard. Some songs, including “Be Prepared,” even earned millions of streams on music platforms like Spotify.

‘Be Prepared’ from ‘The Lion King’ was performed by several singers

In the original The Lion King, Jeremy Irons voiced the smart and sly Scar. It made sense that this actor was one of the vocalists behind Scar’s song, “Be Prepared.” This song was performed before Mufasa’s death. Additionally, “Be Prepared” featured a second vocalist performing as the villain of Disney’s animated film. 

“Though the bulk of the song is sung by Jeremy Irons (the voice of Scar), Jim Cummings (the voice of Ed — as well as a slew of other Disney characters including Winnie the Pooh) had to step in toward the end because Irons blew out his voice,” Oh My Disney reported.

Disney included a new version of ‘Be Prepared’ in the photo-real adaptation of ‘The Lion King’

Disney released its reimagined version of The Lion King in 2019. This photo-real adaptation included several musical numbers performed by Donald Glover, Beyoncé, and other cast members. 

However, this version of “Be Prepared” was shortened and almost spoken word from Scar and his hyena friends. Some fans noted the differences in the productions even before their release, thanks to an interview with composer Elton John.

“They need to have a new end credits song,” John said during an interview with The Sun before The Lion King’s theatrical release. “There’s going to be four of our songs in the film, from the original: ‘Can You Feel The Love Tonight,’ ‘Hakuna Matata,’ ‘I Just Can’t Wait To Be King’ and ‘Circle of Life.’” 

“And then there will be an end, closing song, and we’ve been speaking to Beyonce’s people, and hopefully Tim and I and her can cook up something,” he continued. The song eventually used in the ending credits was “Spirit,” performed by Beyoncé and included in The Lion King: The Gift.

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