While the live-action version of The Lion King has been well received by critics and viewers alike, some fans of the film have suggested that the highly realistic rendering of the animals took away some of the original humour from the animated version. However, despite it's more serious tone, even the 2019 version avoided the Lion King's originally planned ending! Early storyboards from 1993 revealed that during the great showdown between Simba and Scar on Pride Rock, Scar manages to throw Simba off the cliff.
Scar throws Simba off the cliff in the original storyboard
They also show the original plans for Scar to say, "Goodnight sweet prince," before throwing Simba to his death, a quote from the Shakespeare play that the Lion King is based on, Hamlet. As Scar celebrates while thinking he is victorious, not realising that he has caught on fire. Dark, right? Speaking about the storyboard, one person wrote: "I think that this ending gives a better cap to Scar as a character than the final one. In this one we see Scar is completely consumed by madness and hubris as he believes himself to really be the proper ruler." Another person wrote: "Wow that's pretty dark. Interesting but dark."
Another version of the film was that Scar raises Simba after he murders Mufasa. Chatting on the The Lion King's Walt Disney Signature Collection, the Disney Theatrical Group president Tom Schumacher explained: "The whole idea was that Simba didn't run off with Timon and Pumbaa. Scar was going to kill Simba the same time he kills Mufasa. He's holding Simba in his mouth, and he's about to break his neck. Everyone comes in and says, 'Oh my gosh, you saved him from the stampede!' The idea was [Simba] was going to grow up with Scar, and be the goof-off kid" he continues. "It was all supposed to be this... Ferris Bueller, goofing around, delightful scamp."