When Disney’s 37th animated feature, TARZAN, hits theaters on June 18th, don’t look for the title character to belt out a ballad as he swings from vine to vine. “We said, from the very beginning, ‘Tarzan cannot sing!"” said Kevin Lima, who co-directed the film with Chris Buck. “We do not want this character to open his mouth and burst into song about how he loves living in the jungle. That’s something that we just couldn’t see happening.”
Music and other comfortable elements will play a large role in TARZAN, but there won’t be too many of the trappings you’ve come to expect from Disney animated features, as the film makers behind the studio’s latest effort are attempting to, once again, shake loose from the now-familiar formula. “We wanted to do something different and not just a movie that was a sequel to itself,” said TARZAN’s producer Bonnie Arnold (TOY STORY).
Long before Tarzan joined the ranks of such Disney “celmates” as Snow White, Peter Pan and Simba, however, the character was the brainchild of writer Edgar Rice Burroughs. A jack-of-all-trades, who worked as a gold miner, cowboy and even railroad policeman, before finding success as an author, Burroughs published the first of the character’s novels, Tarzan of the Apes, in 1914.