Can You Feel The Love Tonight

Album: The Lion King Soundtrack (1994)
Charted: 14 4
  • This was featured in the Disney movie The Lion King when the main character, Simba the Lion, falls in love with his childhood friend Nala, to the dismay of his friends Timon and Pumbaa. This version was performed by the voice actors in the film (including Nathan Lane, who voiced Timon); the Elton John version plays over the end credits of the film.
  • Working on The Lion King was a welcome opportunity for Elton, who had a say in how the songs he wrote for the film were used. He contributed most of the songs on the soundtrack, including "Circle Of Life," which was also hit (Elton says that "Circle" is a better song and more deserving of the Academy Award).

    Just a few years out of rehab, the soundtrack provided a career resurgence for Elton and led to more work writing for musicals - he would later write for Aida and Billy Elliot.
  • Elton wrote the music, Tim Rice wrote the lyrics. Rice made a name for himself putting lyrics to showtunes by Andrew Lloyd Webber. They wrote songs for Joseph And The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Jesus Christ, Superstar, and Evita. Like Elton, Tim Rice has been knighted.
  • Elton had the Academy Award for Best Original Song locked up tight in 1995 with this song, along with two of his other Lion King contributions - "Circle of Life" and "Hakuna Matata" - nominated along with "Look What Love Has Done" by Patty Smyth (from the movie Junior) and "Make Up Your Mind" by Randy Newman (from The Paper).

    "Can You Feel The Love Tonight" was the winner, and Elton performed the song at the ceremony. After the ceremony, Elton hosted his lavish after-party for the third year; the event was a benefit for his AIDS foundation.

    Elton won the award again in 2020 for the Rocketman song "(I'm Gonna) Love Me Again." That one he wrote with Bernie Taupin, earning Taupin his first Oscar.
  • This is performed as part of the Lion King Broadway show - a lavish, wildly successful production based on the movie. It is also featured in the Lion King show at the Animal Kingdom park at Disney World.
  • A #1 Adult Contemporary hit, this was the most played song on US radio and TV in 1994.
  • Kiki Dee, Rick Astley, and Gary Barlow sang backup. Kiki Dee sang a duet with Elton on the '70s hit "Don't Go Breaking My Heart," Astley had a series of hits in the early '90s, and Barlow was a member of the group Take That.
  • This won the Grammy Award for Best Male Pop Vocal, marking just the third Grammy win for Elton.
  • Elton reworked a handful of the film's classic songs for the 2019 live-action/CG remake, directed by Jon Favreau. Like the original version, Timon (Billy Eichner) and Pumbaa (Seth Rogen) introduce the tune and it segues into a romantic duet between Simba (Donald Glover) and Nala (Beyoncé).
  • The song was originally supposed to be a parody by Timon and Pumbaa, but Elton was keen on singing a big romantic number, so it was reworked as a love song about Simba and Nala's budding romance.
  • According to lyricist Tim Rice, the Disney executives weren't sold on Elton's demos. "In retrospect, I can tell now, they weren't very excited about the demos," he told the Los Angeles Times. "We had a lovely demo from Elton singing 'Can You Feel the Love Tonight,' but it's Elton singing at the piano. I don't think they could quite relate to it being the voice of the characters... They felt like, 'Oh, we're getting Elton John tracks.' I knew they weren't, but they didn't know that."

    Rice had to get creative to help the bigwigs see how the songs would function in the movie. "I went into the studio and redid a couple demos on my own with some other singers," he explained. "I turned 'Can You Feel the Love Tonight' into a duet with Lea Salonga and Brad Kane, the two voices from Aladdin. I just hired them as session singers, and I put in some jungle noises. I thought, 'Well, if it doesn't work then I won't tell anyone about it.' And I did another for the song 'I Just Can't Wait To Be King.' But it showed them that you had to see beyond just Elton doing the songs."
  • Brian Wilson recorded this for his 2011 album, In The Key Of Disney.
  • Beyoncé and Donald Glover (who sometimes records under the name of Childish Gambino) performed this for the 2019 live-action remake of The Lion King. The pair laid down their parts separately, as Glover was working in London on Solo: A Star Wars Story at the time. So while Beyoncé recorded her vocals in the States, Glover did his at Abbey Road Studios.

    Beyoncé and Donald Glover play Nala and Simba, respectively in the movie. They are joined on the new version of "Can You Feel The Love Tonight" by Billy Eichner and Seth Rogen, who play Timon and Pumbaa, respectively.

Comments: 25

  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn July 22nd 1994, Billy Joel and Elton John performed in concert before 54,000 fans at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey, it was the first of their five concerts together...
    At the time Elton John's "Can You Feel the Love Tonight" was at #7 on Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart; two days later it rose to #5, then on July 31st it would peak at #4 {for 1 week}...
    {See next post below}.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn June 24th 1994, the Walt Disney animated movie "The Lion King" opened in theaters across the U.S.A. and Canada...
    The movie won two Academy Awards; 'Best Original Song' for "Can You Feel the Love Tonight' and for Hans Zimmer for 'Best Original Score"...
    "Can You Feel the Love Tonight' by Elton John entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart on May 15th, 1994 at position #86; and on July 31st, 1994 it peaked at #4 (for 1 week) and spent a half-year on the Top 100 (26 weeks; and for 12 of those 26 weeks it was on the Top 10)...
    And on July 3rd, 1994 it reached #1 (for 8 weeks) on Billboard's Adult Contemporary Tracks chart.
  • Megan from Stevenson, AlHA!!! I absolutely love The Lion King! I know the whole movie front and backwards, all the dang songs, ect. I can even play the songs on my trumpet! lol Love it!!!!
  • Hannah from Gustavus, OhThe Lion King came out when I was 1, but I got really obsessed with it when I was like 4-5. I used to know all the words to every song. My mom got sick of it, though, so I haven't watched it since then. This song was the first one I ever danced to with a boy, though, so I learned it all over again.
  • Diana from Bronxville, NyThis song came out when my Mom was dyeing of cancer. I would hear it on the radio as I was getting ready to go to the hospital to see her. Now when I hear this song I know she is with me. I love this song it makes me feel close to her.
  • Shawn from Green Bay, WiAbsolutely beautiful and soothing song. One of Elton's greatest, which is really saying something. The first line refers to a "calm surrender," and that is basically exactly what this song is- a calm surrender to nature, love, and the joy of being alive.
  • Brad from Center Line, MiThe LK came out a few years before my brother died of cancer. His daughter watched it 'ad nauseum' before and after he passed. The scene of Simba's dad in the stars kept her going for awhile. Good enough for me. "Cheers!" to Lion King fans.
  • Ryan from Los Angeles, CaI associate this song with being spiritually
    awakened by a woman I fell in love with and almost lost. I self analyzed myself through deep pain, and wanted to change. The twisted kaleidoscope is the false reality presented to us. There is a rhyme & reason as we are all interconnected. We have traveled amongst the stars as energy & will again. Two individual hearts can beat in synchronization if the emotion and mind is strong and aware. All this new awareness can be harnessed into a prominent future by ones design or the reality of that awareness can crack the mind, and emotion of those of weaker willpower, thus becoming a vagabond. Now I am at peace, a calm surrender knowing all will be better in a little more time. I believe in humanity and its ability to evolve into a higher level of consienceness.
    One should always believe the very best no matter what negativity they are confronted with, thus disempowering the force applying that bad energy. I have always been a restless warrior (never satisfied, only pacified),so just being near that someone is enough because of the magic she triggered. I am still wide-eyed to the continuing growth of my being and understanding of the truth of it all, along with this extremely powerful true love I feel for this woman. We are friends barely because I can hardly control the waves of emotions that make me act childish and she has not yet been awakened herself on top of all that. Part of me wants to lay this love to rest. How long can I keep on going through this loop? I must believe the very best...
  • Caitlin from Upper Township, NjTo Brandon : Lion King is not Hamlet. The music, characters and atmosphere set it apart from the shakespeare play. Lion King is the best movie ever and if you don't believe, you can look at how much money it made ad kiss my butt.
  • Brandon from Peoria, IlThe Lion King is an animated version of Sakespere's "Hamlet."
  • Lalah from Wasilla, AkMy kids watched the Lion King daily for four years. I know all the dialogue, all the scenes and all the words to this song. I quit liking it about the 759,399,241st time I heard it.
  • Michelle from Darlington, EnglandLove it! It always reminds me of when I went to see the lion king at the theatre in London! Love the film, love the songs!
  • Sean from Brockton, MaThe lyric that gets me: "It's enough for this restless warrior, just to be with you". Sappy, yes, but sappy genius.
  • Lacie from Whitefish, MtWhat a BEAUTIFUL song!! I mean Lion king is the best movie disney EVER made! This song just gives you the butterfly in the stomach feeling! I LOVE IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • Caitlin from Upper Township, NjThis is easily the greatest love song of all time! The Lion King is the greatest movie of all time, and both deserved their huge sucess!
  • Jon from Oakridge, OrThe Lion King is, if not one of the best, than THE best Disney film of all time; which, in turn makes this song wonderful.
  • Lysa from Houston, TxI love this song so much. The lion king is my FAVORITE movie. I love it. It makes the movie even better. This song is my favorite classical song.
  • Joel Schmendrick from Ottawa, Irelandlove this song. when i heard it the first time i saw lion king, i cried because it was so sad
  • Scott from Perth, Western Australia, AustraliaAJ of Cleveland,GA - when they solicited Elton's opinion, they asked him to watch the film and give his feedback. Originally the song wasn't even in the film at all! I don't know how he did it, but he convinced them the song needed the song, other than that he said it was the best animation he had seen. They actually listened to him (which really doesn't happen in Hollywood), and fair enough Elton John and Tim Rice one an Oscar for the song. Elton John also one a Grammy Award for this song.
  • Michael from Houston, Txits kind of weird when you hear it when your young because at first you don't get it. When I got older I laughed my but off!
  • Aj from Cleveland, GaWhen I was little, if I heard this, I would cry. I used to watch the Lion King EVERY day.

    "Disney solicited Elton's opinion about the movie as they were putting it together"

    What does that mean???
  • Katie from Coopersburg, PaThis song is so romantic! This song reminds me of how close my boyfriend and I are! It brings us closer and closer everyday! It is also my favorite song of the whole movie! Somwtimes i only watch the movie for that song!
  • Martha from Firebaugh, CaThis is a great song and I really love that is in the Lion King Soundtrack. Ive owned it since I was 4. And still listen to it once in a while.
  • Julia from London, Englandlove this song, it reminds me of this sad story i heard on the radio, where a woman wrote in asking to play it for her recently deceased boyfriend who died in a car crash( he was driving on his way to meet her). she wanted to play it to keep his memory alive. she also said that months earlier before his death, she phoned the radio show to request "can you feel the love tonight" for him, because they were spending so much time apart and so this song was special to them.
  • Ed from Chicago, IlGreat song! Sure it's a little sappy, but it's got a easy tune and melody. It also reminds me of an ex-girlfriend, so that brings memories.
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