It’s a timeless tale about a savage raised by men and a man raised by savages. Tarzan has existed in the annals of history since Edgar Rice Burroughs 1912 novel, Tarzan of the Apes. Since the 1999 Disney film, however, the classic literature has taken a back seat and the animated film has taken over as the primary inspiration for the modern perception of the king of the jungle.
Directed by Kevin Lima and Chris Buck, Tarzan is based on Burroughs original story. Though it takes some liberties with the story, specifically so it will fit better into a children’s movie, Tarzan keeps many of the same themes and follows the titular character and his quarrel with a man named Clayton. The award-winning film quickly became a Disney classic and a major part of the production company’s library of animated feature films.
Join the King of the Jungle on his animated adventure whenever you want and watch Tarzan online.
Here’s how to stream Tarzan right now:
How to Stream ‘Tarzan’ Exclusively on Disney+
Disney’s Tarzan is a classic animated Disney movie and it is streaming exclusively on Disney’s new subscription streaming service, Disney+.
The service costs $6.99/month. You may also opt for this discount bundle of Disney+, Hulu and ESPN+ for $12.99/month.
- 1. Sign up for Disney+ here
- 2. Go to Disneyplus.com or download the Disney+ app on your device
- 3. Log in using your information
- 4. Search for “Tarzan”
- 5. Tap on Tarzan
- 6. Tap the PLAY button
Disney+ also boasts a vast library of Disney-owned movies and series — plus several new original series coming soon. The service includes unlimited downloads so you can watch offline whenever and wherever you want. The list of compatible devices and smart TVs includes iPads, Apple TV, Amazon devices, Amazon Fire TV, Android, Chromecast, Roku, PS4, and Xbox One.
Release Date: 1999
Creators: Stephen Anderson, Mark D. Kennedy, Carole Holiday, Gaetan Brizzi, and Paul Brizzi
Director: Kevin Lima and Chris Buck
Starring: Tony Goldwyn, Minnie Driver, Glenn Close, Lance Henriksen, and Brian Blessed
When a British expedition threatens his home, a man that was raised by gorillas embarks on a quest to learn his place in the world.
How Long Is ‘Tarzan’?
Tarzan has a runtime of 88 minutes.
Orphaned at a young age, Tarzan was cared for by a tribe of gorillas. Having grown up believing he was one of them, his life is turned upside down when a British expedition crosses through the jungle. After meeting Jane, a member of the expedition, Tarzan begins to understand that he is not a gorilla and his place may not be in the wild after all. While trying to figure out where he belongs, Tarzan learns of a ruthless hunter, Clayton, who is threatening the King of the Jungle’s gorilla family.
This touching tale of family and self-discovery is effective due in part to its talented cast. Well-known actors and actresses came together to bring to life this animated interpretation of Edgar Rice Burroughs’ classic story.
Tony Goldwyn as Tarzan
The 20-year-old man raised by gorillas. Brian Blessed may have given Tarzan his signature yell, it was Tony Goldwyn that gave the King of the Jungle a personality. Viewers may have been confused by Tarzan’s American accent, but that is attributed to Goldwyn’s inability to pull off an English accent. Initially, he was to speak to his gorilla family with an American accent and use his English accent when speaking to humans.
Minni Driver as Jane Porter
Tarzan’s love interest, Jane Porter is the ambitious daughter of Professor Porter. She is the first to come into contact with Tarzan and is responsible for him finally realizing he is human. Driver not only provided Porter’s voice, but many of her mannerisms were incorporated into Jane’s animation.
Glenn Close as Kala
Kala is Tarzan’s adoptive mother and mate to Kerchak. She was responsible for finding and initially caring for Tarzan after her son was lost to Sabor. She’s a kind gorilla but isn’t afraid to step up and protect her family against the jungle’s many threats.
Lance Henriksen as Kerchak
Kerchak is a mate to Kala and the leader of the gorilla tribe that takes Tarzan in. Despite Kala taking to Tarzan easily, Kerchak finds it more difficult to connect with the young boy. Henriksen was chosen for the role due to his deep and intimidating voice. Henriksen may have ultimately landed the role, but Harrison Ford was originally considered for it.
Brian Blessed as William Clayton
Brian Blessed provided Tarzan’s yell and also voiced William Clayton, the intelligent but arrogant hunter seeking to claim Tarzan’s family and sell them. He is the Porters’ guide but has an ulterior motive for wanting to be in the jungle. Before Blessed auditioned for Clayton, Sir Patrick Stewart and Sir Ian McKellen were being considered for the role.
‘Tarzan’ Songs and Soundtrack
As with most of Disney’s animated feature films, Tarzan comes with a soundtrack full of memorable songs produced by the best in the industry. Composed by Phil Collins and scored by Mark Mancina, the Tarzan soundtrack includes songs like “You’ll Be in My Heart,” which won the Academy and Golden Globe awards for Best Original Song and the Grammy for Best Song Written for a Motion Picture, Television or Other Visual Media. The full album also earned a Grammy Award for Best Soundtrack Album while Collins was recognized for his contributions with the American Music Award for Favorite Adult Contemporary Artist. Additional notable songs include “Two Worlds,” “Son of a Man,” and “Strangers Like Me.”
‘Tarzan’ at the Box Office
Tarzan was an undeniable success at the box office with an opening weekend projection of $170 million. Made on a production budget of $130 million, it took home a worldwide box office of $448.2 million. In 1999, it was the fifth-highest grossing film and the second-highest animation release, falling behind Pixar’s Toy Story 2. Tarzan’s box office fell behind Disney’s The Lion King by only $40.9 million in opening weekend gross earnings.
‘Tarzan’ Reviews – What the Critics Said
Tarzan was noted for its improved visual enhancements over previous Disney animations. Though some outlets felt the film fell short of Disney’s best, others praised it for its detailed set pieces and Disney’s constant need to “push the envelope” with each new release. Tarzan was appreciated for its faithfulness to Edgar Rice Burroughs’ original novel and incorporation of humor into the largely dramatic narrative.
Where ‘Tarzan’ Fits in the Disney Movie Pantheon
With every animated release, Disney showcases the latest and greatest in animation technology. Tarzan is no different, and the movie is still recognized today for the advancements it made in 1999. The film has a legacy that’s gone on to spawn direct-to-video sequels, live-action spin-offs, and video game appearances. Many movies have since been added to Disney’s ever-expanding library, but Tarzan will always be a favorite. Tarzan may best be known for ending the Disney Renaissance, or the period where Disney was primarily producing successful films based on well-known stories.
‘Tarzan’ Trivia: 5 Fast Facts
A movie as revered and remembered as Tarzan is bound to have plenty of history behind its production. These five fast facts showcase just a small fraction of the interesting tidbits of information that spawned from the film’s creation.
1. Perfecting Tarzan
To perfect the many aspects of Tarzan, Disney turned to a few sources. First, to determine how he would look sliding down a log – a maneuver inspired by animator Glen Keane’s son – the animators studied the movements of pro skateboarder Tony Hawk. Additionally, to ensure Tarzan’s body looked right, specifically when it came to his muscles, Disney brought in an anatomy professor for a consult. The professor superimposed the proper muscles over the animators’ drawings to show how Tarzan’s frame should appear.
2. A Matter of Improv
You don’t hear too often of improvisation in an animated film. In Tarzan, though, one of the longest animated scenes ever was completely ad-libbed by Minnie Driver. When Jane Porter goes to tell her father and Clayton of Tarzan, the exasperated speech was completely improvised by the actress.
3. Switching Genders
In the original script for Tarzan, Terk was intended to be a boy. When it came time for auditions, however, none of the male actors seemed to fit the role. Then, Rosie O’Donnell came in and it was clear that Terk’s gender needed to be swapped. Producer Bonnie Arnold approved of the change, stating “You don’t have to be a guy to be a best friend.”
4. Clayton’s Rifle
It’s easy to mistake William Clayton’s rifle for a double-barrelled shotgun. The design is very similar and the shotgun isn’t uncommon for hunters. However, Clayton’s weapon of choice is a double-barrelled rifle, which British hunters used to carry. The rifle fired large bullets that could bring down larger animals.
5. Whose Idea Was It?
The movie uses a new technique known as Deep Canvas animation, which creates a 3-D effect while still using 2-D characters. Though Eric Daniels is credited for developing the process – and winning an Annie Award for Technical Achievement in the Field of Animation – it was John Lassetter who first suggested using the process. Lassetter was fired from Disney and went on to direct the first fully 3-D animated movie – Pixar’s Toy Story.
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