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Hakuna Matata

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"Hakuna Matata" is a song sung by Timon, Pumbaa and Simba from Disney's 32nd animated feature, The Lion King. It was composed by Elton John, who also composed other songs from the film, and with the lyrics by Tim Rice. It was nominated for the 67th Academy Award for Best Original Song, but lost to another song in the film, "Can You Feel the Love Tonight?". The song is also ranked #99 on the list AFI's 100 Years... 100 Songs,[1] along with "When You Wish Upon a Star" (#7), "Some Day My Prince Will Come" (#19), and "Beauty and the Beast" (#62). It is one of the only four songs from Disney that made the cut.

History

"Hakuna Matata" is a Swahili phrase that is literally translated as "There are no worries." It is sometimes translated as "no worries," although is more commonly used similarly to the American English phrase "no problem."[2]

In 1994, Disney's animated movie The Lion King brought the phrase to international recognition, featuring it prominently in the plot and devoting a song to it. A meerkat and a warthog, named Timon and Pumbaa, teach the main character, a lion cub named Simba, that he should forget his troubles. The song, like the rest of the soundtrack, was written by Elton John and Tim Rice, who respectively composed the music and lyrics. During production of the film, the filmmakers had planned to use a song titled "Warthog Rhapsody", but after the production team returned from their safari trip in Kenya, they decided "Hakuna Matata" would be a better phrase.[3]

The Lion King

In the movie, the song was sung after the wildebeest stampede and Mufasa's death. Timon and Pumbaa tried to cheer the depressed Simba, who feels guilty for his father's death. The song is to teach Simba to slack and relax and enjoy the life with no worries, while he grows older as time passes. At one part, Pumbaa almost said that every time he "farted," but Timon cuts him off, warning Pumbaa, "Not in front of the kids!" (referencing the audience [or unseen animal kids] and Simba).

Lyrics

Original version

Timon: Hakuna Matata, what a wonderful phrase!
Pumbaa: Hakuna Matata, ain't no passing craze!

Timon: It means no worries, for the rest of your days.
Timon and Pumbaa: It's our problem-free philosophy.
Timon: Hakuna Matata!

[Speech not heard on the album version]
Simba: Hakuna Matata?
Pumbaa: Yeah, it's our motto.
Simba: What's a motto?
Timon: Nothing. What's a-motto with you? [laughs]
Pumbaa: You know kid, these two words will solve all your problems!
Timon: That's right. Take Pumbaa for example.

Why, when he was a young warthog...
Pumbaa: When I was a young warthooooooooog!

[Speech]
Timon: Very nice.
Pumbaa: Thanks.

Timon: He found his aroma lacked a certain appeal
He could clear the Savannah after every meal
Pumbaa: I'm a sensitive soul
Though I seem thick-skinned
And it hurt that my friends never stood downwind

And oh, the shame!
Timon: He was ashamed!
Pumbaa: Thought of changing my name!
Timon: Oh, what's in a name!
Pumbaa: And I got downhearted
Timon: How did you feel?
Pumbaa: Everytime that I...

[Speech]
Timon: Hey, Pumbaa! Not in front of the kids!
Pumbaa: Oh, sorry.

Timon and Pumbaa: Hakuna Matata! What a wonderful phrase!
Hakuna Matata ain't no passing craze.
Simba: It means no worries for the rest of your days.
Timon: Yeah, sing it, kid!
Timon and Simba: It's our problem free...
Pumbaa: Philosophy!
All: Hakuna Matata!

[Speech not heard on the album version]
Timon: Welcome to our humble home!
Simba: You live here?
Timon: We live wherever we want.
Pumbaa: Yup! Home is where your rump rests! Heh.
Simba: It's beautiful!
Pumbaa: [burps] I'm stuffed!
Simba: I'm so hungry, I could eat a whole zebra.
Timon: Eh-heh, we're fresh out of Zebra.
Simba: Any Antelope?
Timon: Nuh-uh.
Simba: Hippo?
Timon: Nope! Listen kid, if you live with us, you have to eat like us. Hey, this looks like a good spot to wrestle up some grub!
Simba: Eww! What's that?
Timon: A grub. What's it look like?
Simba: Eww! Gross!
Timon: Tastes like chicken.
Pumbaa: Slimy, yet satisfying!
Timon: These are rare delicacies, mmm! Pecans with a very plesant crunch.
Pumbaa: You'll learn to love 'em!
Timon: I'm telling ya, kid, this is the great life. No rules, no responsibilities...ooh! The little cream-filled kind. And best of all, no worries! Well, kid?
Simba: Oh, well. Hakuna Matata. Slimy...yet satisfying.
Timon: That's it!

[Instrumental bridge]

Timon and Pumbaa:
Hakuna! Matata! (3x)
Hakuna...

Simba: It means no worries, for the rest of your days.
All: It's our problem free, philosophy.
Timon: Hakuna Matata
Pumbaa: Hakuna Matata
Simba: Hakuna Matata...

Timon and Pumbaa version

Timon: Hakuna Matata, what a wonderful phrase!
Pumbaa: Hakuna Matata, ain't no passing craze!

Timon: It means no worries, for the rest of your days.
Both: It's our problem-free philosophy.
Hakuna Matata!
Pumbaa: Yeah!

[Instrumental bridge]

Both: Hakuna! Matata!
Timon! And Pumbaa!
Hakuna! Matata!

Timon: It means no worries, for the rest of your days.
Both: It's our problem-free philosophy.
Hakuna Matata!
Timon and Pumbaa!

Other Versions

Reception

"Hakuna Matata" was instantly popular. It, along with "Circle of Life" and "Can You Feel the Love Tonight" were nominated for "Best Original Song", with "Can You Feel The Love Tonight" being the winner.

Trivia

  • The phrase Hakuna Matata itself means "No worries" in Swahili.
  • One of the bugs that Timon pulls out of a knothole during the song is wearing Mickey Mouse ears.
  • There's a lost verse of "Hakuna Matata" which explained Timon's past situation, like Pumbaa's. It was later cut and used in The Lion King 1½.
  • Part of the song was heard in Toy Story when Molly is in the car and sees the toys in the mirror trying to get into the moving van.
  • This is the most well-known song in the whole Lion King franchise.
  • In Aladdin and the King of Theives, Genie turns into Pumbaa and says "Hakuna Matata."
  • Timon breaks the fourth wall when he says, "Hey, Pumbaa! Not in front of the kids!"

References

  1. AFI's 100 Years...100 Songs.
  2. http://kenya.de/pages/resources_faq.html#2
  3. Schrager, Noah. 10 things you probably didn't know about The Lion King. The Christian Science Moniter.


The Lion King
The Lion King Textless poster 1

Films and Shows: The Lion King | The Lion King II: Simba's Pride | The Lion King 1½ | Timon & Pumbaa (Episode List) | House of Mouse | Timon and Pumbaa's Wild About Safety | The Lion Guard

Video Games: The Lion King | Timon & Pumbaa's Jungle Games | The Lion King: Simba's Mighty Adventure | Kingdom Hearts II

Disney Parks: Fantasmic! | Circle of Life: An Environmental Fable | Festival of the Lion King | World of Color | Disney Dreams! | Celebrate the Magic | The Legend of the Lion King | The Lion King Celebration

Original Film Characters: Simba | Nala | Mufasa | Scar | Rafiki | Timon | Pumbaa | Zazu | Shenzi, Banzai and Ed | Sarabi | Sarafina | Pridelanders | Hyena Clan | Wildebeests | Cape Buffalo | Gopher | Diku (Deleted Character)

Sequel Characters: Kiara | Kovu | Zira | Vitani | Nuka | Outsiders | Crocodiles

Midquel Characters: Ma | Uncle Max | Iron Joe | Meerkat Colony

Timon and Pumbaa Characters: Native Chief | The Three Natives | Monti | Baampu | Nobi | Fred | Quint | Bruce | Stinky | Jackal | Ralph and Eddie | The Cobra | Teds | Savage Lion | Bartholomew | Toucan Dan | Vulture Police | Ned | Rabbit | Uncle Boaris | Uncle Ernie | Boss Beaver | Boy Beaver | Lester the Whale | Speedy the Snail | Smolder the Bear | Little Jimmy | Irwin | El Toro | Mr. Pig | Wolverine | Jumbo Jumbo | Cheetato & Cheetata | Martin Pardon | Rita Book | Captain Bloodbeard | Cisco Pig | Cisco Pig's Gang | Dr. Caliostro | Torgo | The Meerkat Angel | Pumbaa Jr. | Nefu | Dr. Happy | Leslie Lambeau | Sharla | Herman | Lara | Mel | Claudius | Bahuka | Madame Credenza | Duke Meerkat | Tatiana | Mother Eagle | Baby Earl | King Leopold | Princess Claudia | Pimon and Tumbaa | Mad Dog McGraw, Billy the Goat, and Three-fingered Jackelope

The Lion Guard Characters: Kion | Bunga | Fuli | Beshte | Ono

Locations: Africa | Mount Kilimanjaro | Pride Rock | Pride Lands | Water Hole | Elephant Graveyard | The Gorge | Jungle | Rafiki's Ancient Tree | The Outlands | Madame Credenza's Place | Savage Rock | Boss Beaver's Log Land

Songs: Circle of Life | I Just Can't Wait to Be King | Be Prepared | Hakuna Matata | Can You Feel the Love Tonight | This Land | ...To Die For | Under the Stars | King of Pride Rock | Busa | He Lives in You | We Are One | My Lullaby | Upendi | Not One of Us | Love Will Find a Way | Digga Tunnah | That's All I Need | The Morning Report | Lioness Hunt | Rafiki Mourns | One by One | Grasslands Chant | Chow Down | The Madness of King Scar | Shadowland | The Lion Sleeps Tonight | Endless Night | Warthog Rhapsody (Deleted Song)

Other: The Lion King (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) | Broadway Musical | Rhythm of the Pride Lands | The Battle of Pride Rock | Marvel Comics | List of Species seen in The Lion King Franchise

See also: The Disney Afternoon | Find Out Why

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