Disney has always been known for its animated blockbusters, with the 1990's representing the golden age of cartoon musicals like Beauty and the Beast, Pocahontas, and The Lion King. The latter is headed back to theaters shortly, as Jon Favreau has remade the 1994 classic with ultra realistic visual affects. The Iron Man director brought an outstanding cast together, lead by Donald Glover's Simba and Beyonce's Nala.
Donald Glover has had a successful career as both an actor and musician-- going by the name Childish Gambino. As such, you'd think he'd be confident working with an artist of Beyonce's nature. But it turns out he sometimes needed to keep his distance from Queen B. Namely, while recording the vocals for their duet "Can You Feel the Love Tonight?" When recently asked if he recorded in the same studio as Beyonce, Glover said:
No, I requested not to be. I did not want to be looking into Beyonce’s eyes while doing this. But no actually, I was working on Solo at the time so I was in London. So I recorded at Abbey Road Studios.
It looks like Donald Glover wasn't quite ready to sing a duet with Beyonce in the room. Luckily, his schedule for Solo: A Star Wars Story brought the perfect excuse to keep him away from the former Destiny's Child singer.
Donald Glover's comments about Beyonce come from his recent appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live! Glover popped up on the talk show to promote The Lion King, wearing a Lion onesie to really make the message clear. He fielded all sorts of questions from the host, although every Lion King conversation eventually turns to the subject of Beyonce.
As the 35 year-old actor tells it, actually looking into Beyonce's eyes and singing "Can You Feel the Love Tonight?" was just too daunting of an experience for Donald Glover. So the two actor/musicians recorded their parts separately, before being mixed and combined for the theatrical cut of The Lion King.
During his same conversation with Jimmy Kimmel, Donald Glover joked about the situation, and likened to it playing Basketball with Michael Jordan. As he put it:
I imagine it’s less intimidating playing Basketball with Michael Jordan if you’re at home just throwing pieces of paper in the trash.
Touche, Donald Glover. Touche. Luckily for him, voice acting doesn't typically require the cast to be together. Although Billy Eichner and Seth Rogen recently revealed they got to record their dialogue in the same room, and play off each other.
You can check out Donald Glover's full appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live! below, complete with the lion onesie.
Really, how can you not love that man? Most people do talk show appearances in outfits curated by their personal stylist, Donald Glover went the comfortable route to do Lion King press. He continues to be a relatable figure, despite winning a Grammy and playing both Simba and Lando Calrissian in Solo: A Star Wars Story.
The Lion King will roar into theaters on July 19th. In the meantime, check out our 2019 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.