Steve Daly
July 15, 1994 AT 04:00 AM EDT

The Art of the Lion King

Current Status
In Season
Christopher Finch

We gave it an A-

Among the vast circle of Disney animation artists, there’s not a genus left uncataloged in The Art Of The Lion King, a hefty coffee-table salute to the studio’s new animated feature. It recounts the story line in leaden, portentous prose, but who’ll stop to read that pseudo-mystical text by Christopher Finch when the gorgeously reproduced illustrations speak so well for themselves? Smartly varied, they map the exhaustive preparatory steps that go into a Disney ‘toon movie, from early concept art that sets a mood, to story sketches that block out the action, to ”color key” paintings, to the wonderfully lively original animation drawings that are cleaned up and colored in for finished shots. You probably wouldn’t put any one image on your wall, but the book hangs together as a portrait of process. A-

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