Kimba the White Lion

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Kimba the White Lion
Kimba.JPG
Artwork created for the recent Kimba Ultra Edition DVD set.
ジャングル大帝
(Janguru Taitei (Jungle Emperor))
GenreComing of age, Adventure, Drama
Manga
Jungle Emperor
Written byOsamu Tezuka
Published byGakudosha
Kobunsha
Kodansha
DemographicShōnen
MagazineManga Shōnen
Original runNovember 1950April 1953
Volumes3
Anime television series
Directed byEiichi Yamamoto
Music byIsao Tomita
Toriro Miki (Theme Song Composition)
StudioMushi Production
NetworkFuji Television
Original runOctober 6, 1965September 28, 1966
Episodes52
Anime film
Jungle Emperor Leo: Feature Film
Directed byEiichi Yamamoto
StudioMushi Production
ReleasedJuly 31, 1966
Runtime75 minutes
Anime television series
The New Adventures of Kimba The White Lion
Directed byTakashi Ui
StudioTezuka Productions
Licensed byPioneer Entertainment
NetworkTV Tokyo
Original runOctober 12, 1989October 11, 1990
Episodes52
Anime television film
Jungle Taitei - Yūki ga Mirai o Kaeru
Directed byGorō Taniguchi
Written byOsamu Suzuki
StudioTezuka Productions
NetworkFuji Television
ReleasedSeptember 5, 2009
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Kimba the White Lion
Kimba.JPG
Artwork created for the recent Kimba Ultra Edition DVD set.
ジャングル大帝
(Janguru Taitei (Jungle Emperor))
GenreComing of age, Adventure, Drama
Manga
Jungle Emperor
Written byOsamu Tezuka
Published byGakudosha
Kobunsha
Kodansha
DemographicShōnen
MagazineManga Shōnen
Original runNovember 1950April 1953
Volumes3
Anime television series
Directed byEiichi Yamamoto
Music byIsao Tomita
Toriro Miki (Theme Song Composition)
StudioMushi Production
NetworkFuji Television
Original runOctober 6, 1965September 28, 1966
Episodes52
Anime film
Jungle Emperor Leo: Feature Film
Directed byEiichi Yamamoto
StudioMushi Production
ReleasedJuly 31, 1966
Runtime75 minutes
Anime television series
The New Adventures of Kimba The White Lion
Directed byTakashi Ui
StudioTezuka Productions
Licensed byPioneer Entertainment
NetworkTV Tokyo
Original runOctober 12, 1989October 11, 1990
Episodes52
Anime television film
Jungle Taitei - Yūki ga Mirai o Kaeru
Directed byGorō Taniguchi
Written byOsamu Suzuki
StudioTezuka Productions
NetworkFuji Television
ReleasedSeptember 5, 2009
Portal icon Anime and Manga portal

Jungle Emperor (ジャングル大帝 Jungle Taitei?), titled in English as Kimba the White Lion, is an anime series from the 1960s. Created by Osamu Tezuka and based on his manga of the same title which began publication in 1950, it was the first color animated television series created in Japan.[1] The manga was first published in serialized form in Manga Shōnen magazine. The anime was produced by Mushi Production. The later series was produced by Tezuka Productions.[2]

This anime series has enjoyed popularity worldwide — including in the United States, Australia, Europe (where it has been translated into several languages such as French, Italian, Catalan, Spanish, German, Dutch etc.) and the Middle East.

A new TV special premiered September 5, 2009 on Fuji TV. Produced in commemoration of Fuji TV's 50th anniversary, it was directed by Gorō Taniguchi, written by noted novelist and drama writer Osamu Suzuki, and featuring character designs from noted illustrator Yoshitaka Amano.

Plot[edit]

In Africa during the mid-20th century, as mankind encroaches, the white lion Panja gives the jungle's wild animals a safe haven. However, he angers nearby villagers by stealing their cattle and their food to feed the jungle carnivores. (In the English dub Panja merely frees the cattle.)

A professional hunter, Viper Snakely (known as Ham And Scrambled Egg in the original Japanese), is called in to stop these raids. He avoids directly attacking Panja. Instead, he records the sounds of Panja and uses them to trap his mate, Eliza, who then becomes bait in a trap for Panja. Panja is killed for his hide, and the pregnant Eliza is put on a ship, destined for a zoo.

Kimba (Leo in the Japanese-language version) is born on the boat. Eliza teaches him his father's ideals. As a huge tropical storm nears, she urges her cub out through the bars of her cage. The storm wrecks the boat, and he flounders in the ocean. The fish help him learn to swim. As he begins to despair, the stars in the sky form the face of his mother, who encourages him. Guided by butterflies, he makes it to land.

Leo/Kimba lands far from his ancestral home and is found and cared for by some people. He learns the advantages of human culture, and decides that when he returns to his wild home he will bring culture to the jungle and stand for peace like his father.

The show follows Leo/Kimba's life after he returns to the wild, still a young cub, and how he learns and grows in the next year. Leo/Kimba soon learns that only communication and mutual understanding between animals and humans will bring true peace.

Global syndication[edit]

English and Spanish versions were created in 1966. The show has also been translated into many other languages (see Worldwide translations, below).

In other languages[edit]

Broadcast history[edit]

The animated series was first broadcast in Japan, in October, 1965.[3] Then it was broadcast, with English-dubbed voices, in the United States and other English-speaking markets, beginning in September, 1966 (it was first commissioned for U.S. development by NBC Enterprises [and adapted by Fred Ladd], for syndicated broadcast).[4]

Broadcast countries[edit]

Japan Japan (Original)

United States United States

Australia Australia

Canada Canada

Mexico Mexico

Sri Lanka Sri Lanka

Saudi Arabia Saudi Arabia

France France

Spain Spain

Iran Iran

Indonesia Indonesia

Philippines Philippines

Croatia Croatia

Bosnia and Herzegovina Bosnia and Herzegovina

Italy Italy

An entirely new series with a different cast performing the voice-overs was produced in 1994. It carried exactly the same name.[5]

Characters[edit]

Note: The original Japanese names are given first, with the English names given in parentheses. If no English name was given to replace the character's original name, then no parentheses are given.

Voice casts[edit]

Original Japanese voices (1965)[edit]

1966 English dub (United States)[edit]

1993 English dub (Canada)[edit]

1998 English dub[edit]

The information for the 1998 English dub cast is not available, except for Brad Swaile who voices as Kimba and Kelly Sheridan who voices Raiya

Chronicle[edit]

Image of Kimba (Leo) from the anime, Kimba the White Lion

Episodes[edit]

Home media[edit]

On July 9, 2013 Bayview Entertainment/Widowmaker will release a complete collection of the 1965 - 1966 series containing all 52 episodes as a region 1 release.

The Lion King controversy[edit]

Screenshot from an early presentation reel of The Lion King that shows a white lion cub and a butterfly.

As a number of media journalists and fans watched Disney's animated feature film The Lion King they noticed characters and events in the story resembled those of Kimba. Although The Lion King has a different screenplay, there are a number of strong artistic similarities, including scenes that appear to be copied from those in Kimba. One similarity is the protagonists' names: Kimba and Simba. Although the pronunciations of the two names are similar, the word simba means "lion" in Swahili. Another similarity is the situations; for example, in the pictures below, a comparison of Panja (Caesar) and Mufasa on Pride Rock, the two frames of two different cartoons are fairly similar. Panja stands on a large ledge that would become an iconic pose since it was seen at the beginning of every show in the series; in the movie, Mufasa stands atop Pride Rock, which becomes something of an icon for the film.

In regards to the controversies, Disney has stated that the similarities are all coincidental. Additionally the filmmakers have said the story of The Lion King was inspired by the Biblical stories of Moses and Joseph as well as William Shakespeare's Hamlet.[9][10]

Matthew Broderick has said that when he was hired as the voice of Simba in The Lion King, he presumed the project was related to Kimba the White Lion.[11][12][13][14] "I thought he meant Kimba, who was a white lion in a cartoon when I was a little kid," said Broderick. "So I kept telling everybody I was going to play Kimba. I didn't really know anything about it, but I didn't really care."[15]

Comparison of Kimba the White Lion and The Lion King on Pride Rock. Left: Panja, right: Mufasa.

The Tezuka-Disney connection extends back decades before the movie. Tezuka met Walt Disney at the 1964 New York World's Fair, and Disney said he hoped to "make something just like" Tezuka's Astro Boy.[citation needed] Earlier, Tezuka had asked for and got the license to adapt Disney's Bambi into a manga for the Japanese audience which was published in 1951. More recently, Disney animators were hired to train Tezuka's crew in the use of color when production was started on the Jungle Emperor/Kimba the White Lion TV series.[citation needed] It was said that an animated film of Kimba the White Lion was planned but later scrapped.[citation needed]

The controversy has been referenced in a number of national newspapers in the United States, including a June 2007 Los Angeles Times article.[16] In the episode "'Round Springfield" of The Simpsons, a parody of the Lion King's Mufasa says to Lisa Simpson, "You must avenge my death, Kimba...er, I mean Simba!".

Zira, the antagonist in The Lion King II: Simba's Pride is a close resemblance to Bella Donna who claimed to be Kimba's aunt in the 1967 episode "The Hunting Ground".

Music[edit]

The series uses several themes. The 1966 Japanese version uses an opening theme and a closing theme. The opening is called "Jungle-Taitei" (ジャングル大帝 Janguru-Taitei?, "Jungle Emperor"). The end song is "Leo no Uta" (レオのうた Reo no Uta?, "Leo's Song"). For the Japanese remake, the opening song is "Savanna o Koete" (サバンナを越えて Sabanna wo Koete?, "Past the Savanna") sung by Ichiro Mizuki, and the ending is "Yūbae ni Nare" (夕映えになれ?) sung by Tomoko Tokugai. The opening song for the sequel series is "Go Ahead Onward Leo!" written by Isao Tomita and sung by Mieko Hirota. The US-American theme song known as "Leo the Lion" was written by Mark Boccaccio and Susan Brunet of Miami, Florida's SONIC-Sound International Corporation in 1984.

In popular culture[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Kimba Boxed Set : DVD Talk Review of the DVD Video". Dvdtalk.com. Retrieved 2012-11-28. 
  2. ^ "Kimba the White Lion Dub.DVD - Review". Anime News Network. Retrieved 2012-03-21. 
  3. ^ "Jungle Emperor (1965–1967) "Janguru taitei" (original title)". IMDb.com. Retrieved 2012-11-28. 
  4. ^ [1]
  5. ^ "Kimba the White Lion (1994–)". IMDb.com. Retrieved 2012-11-28. 
  6. ^ "Allen Kosonic - Hire voice actor for your voice over project". Voice123.com. Retrieved 21 March 2014. 
  7. ^ "TAF 2009: Osamu Tezuka’s "Kimba the White Lion" to be renewed in summer 2009 - GIGAZINE". En.gigazine.net. 2009-03-19. Retrieved 2012-11-28. 
  8. ^ "Kimba the White Lion: The Complete Series". 
  9. ^ Welkos, Robert W. (July 13, 1994). "A 'Kimba' Surprise for Disney : Movies: The Lion King is a hit, but reported similarities to the Japanese-created American cartoon of the '60s are raising some questions.". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2011-01-12. 
  10. ^ Hong, Peter (2002-05-19). "The Lion King/Kimba controversy". Los Angeles Times. pp. L4. Retrieved 2008-08-12. 
  11. ^ Peter Schweizer and Rochelle Schweizer, "Disney: The Mouse Betrayed", pp. 167-168.
  12. ^ Trish Ledoux and Doug Ranney, "The Complete Anime Guide: Japanese Animation Video Directory and Resource Guide", p. 16.
  13. ^ Buress, Charles. "Uproar Over 'The Lion King'", The San Francisco Chronicle, July 11, 1994, pp. A1, A13.
  14. ^ "Did Japanese Animator Inspire 'Lion King'?", The Washington Times, July 15, 1994, p. C15.
  15. ^ Arar, Yardena (June 15, 1994). "Disney studios roar into action for `Lion King'". Austin American-Statesman. Retrieved 2012-11-28. 
  16. ^ Ybarra, Michael J. (June 6, 2007). "Osamu Tezuka has been called Japan's Walt Disney. But his drawings aren't happy fantasies.". Los Angeles Times. p. 1. Retrieved 2012-11-28. 
  17. ^ "Jungle Emperor appears on the uniform of Seibu Lions! : News : TezukaOsamu.net(EN):". TezukaOsamu.net. Retrieved 2014-03-14. 
  18. ^ "Designer Hiroaki Ohya Speaks on LACOSTE L!VE x Osamu Tezuka Collaboration". lifeandtimes.com. Retrieved 24 March 2014. 
  19. ^ "Crunchyroll - VIDEO: Leo Ieiri Collaborates with Osamu Tezuka's "Jungle Emperor" in the Latest PV". Crunchyroll. Retrieved 2014-03-13. 

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]