Imagine you need “majestic lion roar” sounds for your epic Disney movie. Ask yourself: When was the last time you actually heard a lion roar? Have you ever heard one make a peep outside of movies? How about at the zoo? No? You’ve only ever seen them asleep, occasionally waking up to lazily try to devour a small child protected by glass?
That’s because lions are pretty lazy creatures. And the creators of The Lion King knew that, so when they needed audio of lions roaring, they figured it wouldn’t be cost-effective to bring actual lions into a sound studio, put comically large headphones on them, and hand them scripts that just said “RAWAWARRRR.”
Also, a lion’s typical “roar” sounds far less intense than we imagine it. Enter Frank Welker, whose list of voiceover credits puts the Law & Order IMDb page to shame. Welker grabbed himself an empty metal trashcan just sitting around the studio and began burping and growling into it next to the microphone. And that’s how we wound up with the “regal” lion roars of the titular king: garbage and yelling.
Walt Disney Pictures
Wouldn’t hurt you to check out the Lion King’s soundtrack.
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