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- NOTE: This article is about the original Scar from the 1994 movie. The 2019 remake version can be found here.
|“|| Mufasa: Don't turn your back on me, Scar!|
Scar: Oh, no, Mufasa. Perhaps YOU shouldn't turn YOUR back on me.
| ~ Scar provokes his brother Mufasa by telling him not to turn his back on him, and foreshadowing his intentions.|
|“||Long live the king.||„|
| ~ Scar showing his true nature to Mufasa before throwing him off the side of the gorge to the stampede below to his death - his most infamous quote.|
Askari, better known as Scar, is the main antagonist of Disney's The Lion King franchise, serving as the main antagonist of Disney's 32nd full-length animated feature film The Lion King, a posthumous antagonist in the 1998 sequel The Lion King II: Simba's Pride and the overarching antagonist of both the 2004 prequel/parallel film The Lion King 1 1/2 and the animated television series The Lion Guard, initially serving as the posthumous overarching antagonist of Season 1, before being resurrected in the special "The Rise of Scar" and becoming the main antagonist of Season 2 and the special "Battle for the Pride Lands", and later as a posthumous antagonist for the remainder of the third season.
He is Mufasa's envious younger brother and Simba's uncle and arch-nemesis. His desire to rule Pride Rock drives him to enact a regicidal plot to kill both his brother and nephew to leave himself the sole royal in line for the throne as the "true" ruler.
- In the original film, he was voiced by Jeremy Irons, who also played Simon Gruber in Die Hard with a Vengeance, Profion in Dungeons & Dragons, Alan Rikkin in Assassin's Creed, Rodrigo Borgia in The Borgias, and Ozymandias in the HBO series Watchmen.
- In the 1998 sequel The Lion King II: Simba's Pride and the game Simba's Mighty Adventure, he was voiced by Jim Cummings, who was his singing voice in the first film and also voiced Jacques from Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island released that same year.
- In the Kingdom Hearts franchise, he was voiced by James Horan, who also played Skull Face in Metal Gear Solid V.
- In The Lion Guard, he was voiced by David Oyelowo, who also played Steven Jacobs in Rise of the Planet of the Apes, and Agent Kallus in Star Wars Rebels.
- In the 2019 CGI live action remake, he was voiced by Chiwetel Ejiofor, who also played Victor Sweet in Four Brothers, Luke in Children of Men, and Baron Mordo in Doctor Strange.
|“||Well, as far as brains go, I got the lion's share, but when it comes to brute strength..... I'm afraid I'm at the shallow end of the gene pool...||„|
| ~ Scar remarking on his poor genetics despite his high intelligence.|
Scar is a slender lion, but stands eye to eye with Mufasa and Simba, making him tall - otherwise bulky - like they are. He has sharp features and is a gangly lion, thanks to poor genes, with orangish-brown fur and yellow eyes with striking green irises. He has a silky black mane, elbow tufts, a goatee beard and his claws are always extended. He also has a pink scar over his left eye, earning him his name. Despite his poor genetics, Scar is surprisingly strong, as he held his own very well against the much younger and more powerfully built Simba during their final battle.
As a young lion, Scar was leader of the Lion Guard that protected the Pride Lands from danger. Scar proved to be a good leader and always followed his duties and was loyal, though had a lust for power and attention. One day he met a strange lion and Scar was attacked and evenomated by his cobra. The venom brought out Scar's desire for power, his greediness and his hatred for Mufasa. After betraying and killing the lion, he reported to Mufasa, spinning the narrative in his favor, only to be mocked by his older brother with the nickname of "Scar," showing Scar's lack of forgiveness to his brother and pettiness.
As an adult, Scar is a cunning, sarcastic and narcissistic lion with a cultured and chivalrous demeanor, and a wry and cynical wit. However, even with his evil and deceiving ways, he is still very cowardly and prefers to run rather than fight, though if cornered Scar has shown the ability to hold his own as seen in his final fight with Simba.
Scar is filled with hate and disgust for his brother and nephew, and most likely everybody against him. He does not care much about the hyenas and seems to view them only as tools and weapons to use for his own gain, which ultimately resulted in his death when he tried to blame his crimes on them.
Scar is also shown to be very antipathetic and intolerant of failure, berating the hyenas for their failure to kill Simba, even though it wasn't their fault, and angrily throwing them out after they made the mistake of mentioning his brother, Mufasa, of whom Scar was extremely jealous.
Nevertheless, Scar is also very sophisticated, charismatic and persuasive, able to rally the hyenas to his cause and inspire fanatical loyalty from Zira and her pride of lionesses. He retained his manipulative side after returning as a spirit; using his charismatic persona to inspire the Outlanders to help him kill Simba and control the rest of the Pridelands.
He is also shown to be highly intelligent and knowledgeable, able to manipulate conversations and situations to his advantage with relative ease. Scar also proved to be extremely sadistic and merciless, convincing his own nephew, Simba, that he was responsible for the death of his father, Mufasa, and later going on to taunt him that he himself was in fact responsible for Mufasa's demise, which also led to his own demise.
Upon his return as a ghost in The Lion Guard, Scar became more chaotic in nature, as he was willing to break the Circle of Life and take over the entire Pride Lands by turning it into chaos as revenge for his defeat. He also becomes more sadistic; gleefully attempting genocide to get revenge on Simba and the rest of the Pridelands.
The Lion King
The Lion King II: Simba's Pride
|“||Gotcha! Trust me!||„|
|~ Scar stops Simba in saving Mufasa|
The Lion Guard
Scar has received widespread acclaim from both critics and audiences alike, who consider Scar to be one of Disney’s greatest villains, with some stating that he was a better character than Simba. Critics who didn’t like the film tended to enjoy Scar’s characterization and Irons’ performance. Irons himself said that compared to most villains he played, Scar "measures very highly," having "charm," "Machiavellian qualities" and being "iconic in some of the things he says. Irons would then win an Annie Award for Best Achievement for Voice Acting. Watchmojo.com placed Scar as #1 on “Top 10 Animated Disney Villains”. Scar is also considered widely as one of Disney's darkest villains due to his murder of his own brother, Mufasa. Watchmojo.com also 1st Scar's act of fratricide as #2 on "Top Worst Thing Disney Villains Have Done", behind Judge Claude Frollo's acts of attempting genocide, killing Quasimodo's mother and lusting Esmeralda. Despite worldwide acclaim, he did meet some mild controversy, being perceived as a racist, effeminate and homophobic and fans did complain he was less enjoyable after becoming king. Critics and parents alike warn that Scar's behavior can frighten small children. Due to being one of Disney's most infamous villains, Scar is one of the primary members of the Disney Villains franchise.
- Before the The Lion Guard revealed Scar's true name to be Askari, written works such as the book The Lion King: Six New Adventures had his name as Taka, which is Sawhili for 'trash' or 'garbage'. However, the stories were confirmed to be non-canon with the films and television series.
- Askari is the Swahili word for 'soldier' or 'military'.
- Although his nickname did not come from Swahili, his real name in Swahili is never mentioned outside of an Instagram post by Ford Riley stating that Scar's original name was 'Askari.'
- He is ranked 3rd in the Top 30 Disney Villains by DVD Dizzy.
- According to Andreas Deja, Scar is modeled after his voice actor Jeremy Irons.
- Scar is notable for being voiced by Jeremy Irons and animated by Andreas Deja (who also animated Jafar, Alameda Slim, Dr. Frankenollie, and Gaston).
- In Disney's Hercules, the Nemean Lion that Hades sends to fight Hercules bears an exact resemblance to Scar after it is killed and turned into a skin by the former. Given that Andreas Deja was the lead animator of the film, this cameo was likely a reference to his previous work; and may also be a reference to Zazu's joke that Scar could make "handsome throw rug" as well.
- Scar's character is loosely based on Claudius from the Shakespearean play Hamlet; both are the uncle of the main character, and both kill their brother, the main character's father, in order to rule over a land originally lorded over by said brother. This is part in due to the various parallels The Lion King shares with Hamlet. However, unlike Claudius, who seems to hold some regret over killing his brother, Scar holds no guilt over killing Mufasa, although a deleted scene where he goes into a panic attack after seeing Simba return to Pride Rock could hold some evidence. Also, unlike Hamlet (who kills Claudius to avenge his father's death), Simba refuses to kill Scar (as he doesn't want to be like him).
- Scar is also based on real-life dictator Adolf Hitler; as the scene where Scar is over looking his hyena army mimics the scene where Hitler over looks his army and stretches out his hand over them.
- Scar is the first of three Disney villains to be blood related to the film's main protagonist. He would later be followed by Hades and King Runeard.
- It is said that there is no blood relation between Scar and Kovu, who appeared in The Lion King II: Simba's Pride, so there is no blood relation between Kovu and Kiara. However, Nuka mentions that Scar took Kovu in before he died, making Kovu the unrelated son of Scar.
- In the early drafts of The Lion King II: Simba's Pride, Scar was meant to be Kovu's father. However, this was changed as this would have made Kovu and Kiara's relationship incestuous as they would have been first cousins once removed.
- In an earlier draft for The Lion King, Scar was originally a baboon as the plot of the film would have been about a battle between lions and baboons. The only thing that was kept was the scar in the his left eye.
- In an early script for The Lion King, Scar was a rogue lion who was never related to Mufasa and Simba. However, this was changed after the writers decided later in production that the threat should come from within the family for a bigger impact on the characters.
- Scar was originally going to reveal his allegiance with the hyenas to the pride some years into his reign instead of straight after becoming king.
- The fact that Scar adopted Kovu and makes him his successor to the throne is an incoherence with the character itself because Scar was known to care about no one but only himself. This is further supported in The Lion Guard, because at no point did Scar show concern for where Kovu was and was obsessed only by his revenge against Simba.
- It's likely that Scar was mesmerized by a cub who shared similarities with him despite their lack of blood relation.
- Tim Curry, Malcolm McDowell, James Caan, Robert Duvall, and Ray Liotta were all considered for the role of Scar before Jeremy Irons was cast.
- Scar was initially thought to be the main antagonist of the third season of The Lion Guard much like in the second season, but this later turned out to be false as Scar gets destroyed for good in the season premiere and Makucha takes over his role as main antagonist, having bigger plans than Scar. However, even after his ultimate defeat, Scar still serves as a posthumous antagonist for the rest of the season due to Kion questioning himself if he will succumb to his great-uncle's fate or not.
- Whenever Scar had hyenas as his minions, he always betrayed them. In the first film, Scar betrayed the Hyena Clan to try to escape his fate, which turned out to be his loss. In The Lion Guard, he betrayed Janja because he began to doubt his allegiance to him. However, unlike the last time he had considered that in case it did not work, he gave Janja a false information before the betraying for things to turn in his favor, which almost worked.
- In the episode "Battle for the Pride Lands" of The Lion Guard, it is revealed that Scar got his scar from a cobra who was a friend of a unnamed lion that Scar befriended. The lion promised to cure his scar if Scar agreed to do whatever he said, instead Scar destroyed him and the cobra with the roar. When Scar hoped that Mufasa would praise him for destroying the scheming lion. Mufasa mocked him instead by nicknaming him "Scar". The poison from the cobra later made Scar's personality even darker than it already was.
- This means that Mufasa was partially responsible, albeit unintentionally, for the creation of Scar.
- According to Ford Riley, Scar's original name was "Askari" named after his ancestor and the founder of the original Lion Guard of the same name (who later on appears in Season 3), but was shortened down to "Scar" by Mufasa after he was bitten by the cobra.
- Scar is easily the most evil villain in the The Lion King franchise as most villains have redeeming traits (like Janja and the Outsiders), taken comically (like Nuka or Shenzi, Banzai and Ed) or have noble goals. While Scar does have a motive on being evil by being bitten by the Strange Cobra and then being nicknamed by Mufasa turned him evil, he goes way past from being excused by that by not just by outright murdering Mufasa, but tried to kill his nephew, Simba, mostly when he was a child and blamed Mufasa's death on him and literally wants to turn the Pridelands into a wasteland without life as revenge for his demise, not to mention the venom is only shown to bring out the bite victim's darker instincts and desires and Scar had already wanted to overthrow Mufasa.
- Scar is considered a foil to both Simba and Kion. If Simba didn't realize that being king takes responsibilities and forgot about the past, he would've ended up like Scar. He is also an example of what Kion would have become if he did not decide to search for a cure for his scar.
- Scar is a member of Disney's Sinister Cats, a sub-franchise of the mainline Disney Villains franchise.
- Despite being the main antagonist of the The Lion King franchise, Strange Lion was the one who caused Scar to fall into villainy by having Strange Cobra giving him a scar.
- Scar is pictured on one of the 10 USA non-denominated commemorative postage stamps celebrating "Disney Villains", issued as a pane of 20 stamps on July 15, 2017. The set was issued in a single sheet of 20 stamps. The price of each stamp on day of issue was 49 cents. The other villains depicted in this issue are the Evil Queen from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Honest John from Pinocchio, Lady Tremaine from Cinderella, the Queen of Hearts from Alice in Wonderland, Captain Hook from Peter Pan, Maleficent from Sleeping Beauty, Cruella De Vil from 101 Dalmatians, Ursula from The Little Mermaid, and Gaston from Beauty and the Beast.
- At around 29 minutes, Jim Cummings (the voice of Ed the Hyena) had to fill in for Jeremy Irons for the finale of "Be Prepared". Irons threw out his voice after performing the line "you won't get a sniff without me!". The rest of his recording did not sound powerful enough.
- When Scar was the leader of his Lion Guard, he seems to have been the youngest member because the other lions were clearly adult and fully grown, while Scar was a teenager.
- Naturally, this could imply that when Scar lead the Lion Guard at Kion's age, he recruited teenage members of his Pride.
- Scar is Jeremy Irons' second voice acting film role.
- Originally, Scar was going to send Nala as a fully grown lion away from Pride Rock because she ignored his romantic approaches, after which she finds Simba alive and well with Timon and Pumbaa. This idea was ultimately abandoned, as sexual harassment was considered improper in a family film and may have gotten the film a PG-13 rating and it took too long to finish. However, the stage musical adaptation includes this plot development as part of director Julie Taymor's efforts to expand the female characters' presence in the story.
- In the first conversation between Scar and Simba, Simba comments to Scar, "You're so weird..." to which Scar retorts a cryptic, "You have no idea...", a line spoken by Jeremy Irons in similar fashion in Reversal of Fortune (1990).
- Scar suffers from the seven deadly sins. He believes himself to be deserving of power. He also refuses to abandon the Pride Lands, even if it means the death of his subjects (Pride). He is indolent even as the Pride Lands fall into ruin (Sloth). He enjoys food while letting the rest of his kingdom, including his loyal followers, starve (Gluttony). He is envious of his brother and nephew for getting the throne, and plots their deaths for it (Envy). In a deleted scene, he attempts to woo Nala, eager to produce heirs (Lust). He wants power and will destroy anyone to get it (Greed). He gets enraged when Mufasa is mentioned to him, and he attacks Sarabi for comparing him unfavorably to Mufasa (Wrath).
- Jeremy Irons had at first refused the role due to not being comfortable going from the dramatic performance as Claus von Bülow in Reversal of Fortune (1990) to a comedic role. Once he came in, however, Irons' performance even inspired the writers to incorporate more of his acting as von Bülow - even adding one of that character's lines, "You have no idea" - and animator Andreas Deja to watch both Reversal of Fortune (1990) and Damage (1992) to pick up Irons' facial traits and tics.
- Jeremy Irons was reluctant to lend his voice as Scar, until he saw the animation and fell in love with the character.
- When Scar is signing along to 'Lovely Bunch of Coconuts' with Zazu, he holds up a baboon skull and moves its jaw to the lyrics. While the context is very different from the original play, one can't help but be reminded by the Shakespearian inspiration of the film.
- Jeremy Irons came prepared with cigarettes for his voice recordings. He was smoking including during Be Prepared. Rob Minkoff stated that the people involved in the making of the movie had to edit out all of the smoking.
- Near the start of the film Scar tells a mouse that himself will never be King and the mouse will die. Ironically Scar does become 'King' later in the film while the mouse lives after Zazu prevented him from eating the mouse. Also foreshadows Scars death at the end when the hyenas devour him alive
- During the early stages of production, the film's climax had a different ending. After their battle on top of Pride Rock, Scar is left hanging on the edge of a rock and asks Simba for mercy, saying that Simba is not like him, that he is not a murderer, and asks for his forgiveness. Simba pulls him up, but he's thrown over by Scar to the raging fire below and lands safely into a tree. Scar, believing Simba to be dead, starts laughing over his victory before he is burned alive by the fire. The sequence was story boarded, but it was not used, being considered too dark for a Disney film.
- Unlike the other lions, Scar's claws are always displayed throughout the movie.