New post by Kelly of karma&kismet – Disney aficionado and honorary Central Florida resident!
Disney released the newest live-action retelling in a long line of nostalgia films that are taking the box office by storm on July 19th, “The Lion King.” With a star-studded cast that included everyone from Beyonce to Seth Rogen, the film has out performed even Disney’s expectations, earning $191.7 million in its opening weekend.
To determine Orlando’s Restaurant Scene, we limited the list to sit down (table service) restaurants and counter order (quick service) restaurants. Snack stations like Storybook Treats, Golden Oak Outpost and Aloha Isle — while great for some of the best Disney snacks of all time — weren’t eligible for our list. Seasonally operating quick service spots and counter service locations that change their menus regularly, such as Tortuga Tavern, also were not considered.
But is it really a surprise that it did so well? Being a 90’s Disney-kid myself, I remember growing up surrounded by “The Lion King.” From backpacks, to clothing, to fully-Lion-King-themed Birthday parties, anyone who grew up in the 90’s lived the “Hakuna Matata” lifestyle. It seems though, that love for “The Lion King” isn’t specific to one generation, with people of all ages rushing to see the live-action retelling and showing their support for the Pride Lands. To this day, the original animated film, released in 1994, remains the highest grossing G-rated movie of all time, bringing in $422.7 million domestically. Plus, it is in the top 10 highest-grossing animated feature films, alongside others like “Toy Story 2,” “Finding Nemo,” and the top-spot holder, “Frozen.”
If you can’t get enough of Simba and his friends, it is time to plan a trip to Walt Disney World. To celebrate the release of “The Lion King,” Walt Disney World guests have the opportunity to take part in several Limited Time Magic experiences and new entertainment across property that are sure to delight!
Jiko transports guests to the heart of Africa through an exclusive three-course menu crafted as a one-of-a-kind culinary celebration of Simba’s journey. Live music will accompany the dining experience, paying tribute to the award-winning “The Lion King” soundtrack. The limited-time prix fixe menu is available during the dinner period at Jiko – The Cooking Place and is $65 per person, tax and gratuity not included, with the option to add your choice of two levels of wine pairing for an additional cost.
Rivers of Light: We Are One is the nighttime entertainment at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. The enhanced show highlights the milestones we all share in out journey through the great circle of life and includes footage from animal-inspired Disney animated films, including “The Lion King. Rivers of Light: We Are One can be viewed in multiple locations across Asia. FastPass+ and dining packages are available and will help to ensure you have the best viewing location.
Hakuna Matata Time Dance Party takes place daily at the Discovery Island Stage in Disney’s Animal Kingdom and offers guests of all ages the chance to sing, dance, and play games with their favorite “Lion King” characters such as Timon and Rafiki.
Festival of the Lion King, a broadway-style performance, is a fan favorite at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. To elevate the experience and ensure you get the best seats in the house, take advantage of the Festival of the Lion King Signature Dining Package. The experience includes 3 distinct experiences – a three-course lunch or dinner at Tiffin’s, VIP seating for Festival of the Lion King, and a safari tour escorted by a special guide. Package price for adults and children 10 and older is $99, plus tax and gratuities; for children age 3 to 9, the price is $49, plus tax and gratuities.
If you are brave enough to try it, D-Luxe Burger in Disney Springs has created a slimy yet satisfying “Lion King” burger. The signature patty is topped with tomato worms, a basil grasshopper, balsamic vinegar spiders, fresh tomato salad, fried mozzarella, and lettuce on a parker house.
Limited Time Magic “The Lion King” Snacks
Several snacks are available across Walt Disney World property celebrating
“The Lion King” for a limited time. Snacks include the “No Worries Panna Cotta” from Refreshment Outpost in Epcot, Simba cupcake at Pizzafari in Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Peanut Butter Paws cupcake from Landscape of Flavors at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort, and Simba ice cream sandwich at Tamu Tamu in Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
If you’d rather show off your love of “The Lion King,” Walt Disney World also has new merchandise celebrating the beloved film.
Kelly is a twenty-something creative entrepreneur who works to create a life filled with Mickey Bars and Pixie Dust. With a lifelong love of Disney and a background in Graphic Design and communications, Kelly began a small business, called karma&kismet, in the hopes of bringing a little bit of magic into others day through her art. Kelly grew up going to Walt Disney World and other Disney Resorts multiple times a year and has continued visiting as an adult. She enjoys sharing tips from her latest Disney adventures, ways to bring the magic home, and the best Gluten-Free Disney treats! Connect with her on Instagram @karmankismet