Sir Elton John will bank as much as $ 13 million thanks to the upcoming live-action remake of the Disney cartoon “The Lion King.”
The British pop star has agreed to a deal to rework his smash hit compositions from the 1994 animated musical film.
His hits “Circle Of Life” and “Can You Feel The Love Tonight” will be modified in the new version of the film that’s set for release in 2019.
Jon Favreau, who directed 2016’s “The Jungle Book,” is set to helm and it will feature the voices of Beyoncé as Nala, Donald Glover as Simba, Chiwetel Ejiofor as Scar, Seth Rogen as Pumbaa and Keegan-Michael Key as Kamari.
Disney Studios has secured John for the project, but will not announce it for several more weeks.
Insiders say that the licensing deal is worth at least $ 4 million, but will rise in commission from DVD sales and streaming. Earnings from new album sales and royalties on radio worldwide will boost his bank balance too.
And on top of that, ticket sales from “The Lion King” stage productions worldwide will likely increase dramatically after the 2019 film release.
A source in L.A. said: “Elton is working with Disney on this new ‘Lion King’ project. They have reached an agreement to present some reworked versions of the classic hits and perhaps some new work.
“The songs will be thread into the storyline. It is unthinkable when you have Beyoncé involved not to have her sing some of those iconic hits — and that means huge sales to a new generation. The deal is a huge one and will earn him millions at many stages. Obviously he will get a one off licensing deal followed by a cut in royalties from all aspects of the work.”
Sir Elton bagged a “Best Original Song” Oscar for his musical work on the original film for “Can You Feel The Love Tonight.” Two other tunes were nominated for Academy Awards in the same category — “Hakuna Matata” and “Circle Of Life.”
Earlier this month, John shocked fans by appearing at the 20th anniversary of the Broadway production of “The Lion King.”
The 70-year-old star will have to find time in his schedule to rework the musical tracks once he completes his residency at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas in May.
With James Desborough