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The Lion Guard - Entire BluRay Collection Project

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The DVD releases (let alone any Bluray) of The Lion Guard is pathetic, only 17 Episodes out of 79 made have been released on DVD.

The Lion Guard - for myself and many Lion King fans was a welcome addition to the "Lion King Universe" and would of been a very welcome addition for collectors who wanted to own physical versions themselves of all the episodes.

There seems to be no hope at all for a DVD/Blu-ray collection of all seasons... so I made it myself !

All images can be clicked to be enlarged so you can see in better detail.


Part One - High quality rips of all episodes. (few months back before lock down)

All torrents I've tried to use are rubbish, not even half decent quality to what you expect if you want to put this thing on Blu Ray, plus the rips I found always had the "ABC" Logo or some other channel watermarked on the side, ew.

So I went the Stream ripping route. With out a doubt the way to stream these episodes is (recently noticed this has been taken down...good thing I done this project now, its a shame its gone :c ) but with my crappy internet the stream would only allow me to watch it in half decent quality but I was confident that high quality lurked on their servers somewhere. I spent many hours of trying different downloading tools/programs that failed one after the other. Either not getting that high quality rip or just not working at all.

But I finally found something that worked ! 64GB's later of down

loading each episode individually I finally got that perfect rip quality *dies*




Part 2 - Encoding

These video files are big....a bit too big. I could just whack these on a Blu Ray as a data disc but it wouldn't look as pretty and legitimate, I want to have it as a proper playable Blu Ray Disc with proper menus etc and due to how the encoding works, it wont be enough space (eg. My 1.6gb Rip of Return of the roar would take 8gb on a playable Blu Ray when I imported it to Nero !!!) So it may seem kinda superfluous to try and shrink the files down thus potentially loosing quality but I knew there were ways to reduce file sizes without loosing quality, just all a matter of using the right compression methods. After trialing many different ways and settings, that 1.6gb file came down to 850mb and now only took 1GB of Blu Ray Space.

Now it was time to encode the other 74 Episodes xD Each episode on average took 35 mins to encode so my computer was working overtime of about 43 hours xD.



Part 3a - Menu Buttons

Now, I've rambled on a lot..... and if I went into detail on what I done in this section I would probably write a book. I went through tonnes of trial and error and constant changing of things to just improve it that little more because the more I changed...the more I learn....then the more I changed.... xD. So I will just lay out the summary of what I done and leave out the things in between.

I wanted this thing to look and feel like Lion Guard as much as possible, I may have went a little overboard in the end but I don't care xD

Nero is very limiting to what you can do but with some program file modifications it can go a little further.

Nero doesn't allow custom Navigation buttons or video clip preview windows, so I simply made my own and renamed them the same file name as a random selected button in Nero's file system and hey presto it pops up in the program.

As seen in the first and second images, the black and white images are instructions.

-One tells Nero where the highlight selection should be when you select an episode, this is shown in white

-The other one tells Nero where to show the preview clip, anything down in white is where the Video clip will play so some light dabbling in photo shop sorts that out. The image in Part 3c and the video in Part 6a shows you this in action.


Part 3b - Menu Backgrounds

The backgrounds are always the fun therapeutic part ^_^. The backgrounds created are unique for each Season.

Season 1 revolves around Kion Discovering and learning to use his Roar so it had to be an image of Kion Roaring

Season 2 its all about the return of Scar, so what better fitting image then....scar returning xP

Season 3 is the journey of Kion and the Guard to the tree of life and what follows after, so this background may seem like a "spoiler" to some as you can see they are all there by the tree of life. But this image just seemed too good not to use as it fits perfectly. Lets face it, we knew they were going to make it and that really only half the story when the get there, so I let it slide xP

That big "Lion Guard" logo in the middle may seem obtrusive but its important for my nice little 'blend in' with the Introduction videos (Part 4 below) before each menu. This gives off a more professional fluid transition between the intro video and the menu.

To some it may not seem impressive which I understand as we are all on different levels of experience in Photoshop, but at the time I was quite proud how I edited the picture to make Kion's head stick in front of the logo seamlessly. Little did I know this will be nothing compared to when making the Cover for the Cases later on in Part 7 xD



Part 3c - Menu Button Video Preveiws

This was a still image preveiw I shown to friends over on some lion king forums I was giving updates to about this project so i thought i should just throw it in here too.

So inside each paw print is a small clip of each respective episode. I manually chose each part of the clip that shows a fitting part of that episode. Took a long time to finish but any small detail to give it that extra professional edge is worth it :)




Part 4 - Season Intro Sequence

The intro videos I spent too much time on.....but worth it !. Getting the Logo to sync with the background when the clip finished was easy. Getting the video to actually work in Nero was more difficult as Nero didn't like chopped up videos for some reason and kept bugging out. After many tries with different software this one worked perfectly and Nero Liked it, it was so good in fact that my original idea of an intro video got alot more complex and fancier xD. Again, each season has its own intro video.

Each intro video I always tried the have some synchronization between the music and the clips used.



Part 5 - So far, so Good.....But I want Better !

I haven't been keeping track because I kinda get too carried away plus very picky/perfectionist but Nathalie estimates I've put about 35+ Hours into this whole thing (excluding waiting for encoding). Alot of that time was just experimenting because before this I hadn't done anything like this in such depth. Then when I think "This is brilliant"......I change the whole thing and start again xD

4 days ago that exact thing happened. Late afternoon after I posted this thread I had 3 final projects of all 3 seasons completed. I looked at the file sizes of each of them and they were all half what the full capacity of the disc is and I'm thinking to myself, "Maybe I compressed the video files too much...but that shouldn't matter I've previewed the videos and they looked fine......oh wait I didn't watch a busy or action shot".....then it looked terrible and blurry, even though its 1080p the video just looks awful....note to self - next time after encoding look at all different shots of a movie.... :(

Soooo, I fired up the the encoding software again and back to experimenting and tweaking, each time I'm making a change to the parameters I'm having to wait a good while to see the result. Then finally after good few a very sharp 1080p image in all type of shots. Now to re-encode all 75 episodes again.....

My computer be like *bleh*

This time encoding took even has stayed on mostly the last 3 days just encoding, CPU constantly between 95-99% , never went bang and great foot warmer :3

After each season completed it was time to re-import them back into the Nero project file....Nero insists I have to re-link each one individually again to each play button/preview window. Luckily made a complete backup of "Mark 1" of this project before I done the whole re-encode thing. So I could write down each start point of the preview window video clips I had done (mentioned in Part 3c. ) as I did take my time and chose fitting moments, didn't want to go through that all again !







Part 6a - Disc production, Disc Burning

Everything has been leading to this moment - to make sure the projects actually export and work successfully. After a few more small tweaks here and there I export all 3 project files and Burn them onto Bluray !! Yay !

As you can imagine, it did take a while, about 2 hours for each disc, the disc encoding took most of the time.

Below is a demonstration of what all 3 Seasons look like now running the bluray from my computer. The screen capture software lowered the frame rate, but you get the idea. In person looking at it, its alot smoother.

Part 6b. - Disc Poduction, Disc Printing

Keeping to the standard of that I want this to look legitimate and professional, The blank Blu Ray discs I bought are the ones that are printable directly onto the dic itself. Some inkjet printers have this feature built in. You create your design, import it to the printer software that crops and aligns it for the disc. You put the disc in the special printer tray and it sucks it in and prints directly onto the surface of the disc, looks like a proper job !.

No messing around with printable labels and sticking them onto the disc, these to me just look bad but these labels overtime are known for peeling off and fading. Something you don't want to happen while the disc is spinning around at so many thousand RPM in your blu ray player or computer. It does happen and it can ruin your player, not for me thanks !

The designs themselves you may recognize are from either the credit sequences or scenes in the series where they show Rafiki's Drawings. I thought this was great way to show off the discs as its simplistic but looks authentic. The font I found on a free font website, going for the "hand painted" vibe. :P



Part 7a - Case Cover

After so many countless hours editing, encoding, burning videos and being a right pain, it was so nice to do still images for a change, alot of fun doing this ! Using other Disney Bluray cases as a guide in aesthetics so make it look like a genuine Disney case, and using a Bluray sleeve template guidelines so I can be sure everything fits in the case in the right place (most important being that the Spine of the case is centered perfectly. I don't think i have ever used Photoshop that extensively xD A lot of googling how to do certain things but that's how you learn i guess xP. Sooo many layers, 29 in fact xD.

The picture opposite was "Mark 1" and as much as I liked it when it came to just about to actually print it there were alot of things that I wanted to change and some improvements I could make.


Part 7b. Case Cover, Fine Tweaks

The main Kion picture I used had a few weird things in it, what suprised me is this image has been used for alot of wallpapers and official promotional pieces. It was weird things like the random "background" birds that are -in front- of Kion for some reason and also his rear leg doesn't touch the rock. Could be a power stance thing maybe ? To me it just looks like he is lifting his leg "ahem" xP. Didn't bug me at first but every time I looked at it nearer to finishing the more I was Irked. Then when I asked my girlfriend Nathalie to see how the whole design looked in general (second pair of eyes), she pointed out the same things, then I just had to change them XD.

His mane need duplicating and the layer put on top so it goes infront of the logo,(just like in the background image for Season one). This was already done but didn't look at good as the background image version so doing it again.

The birds were easy to get rid of just using the heal brush and few manual artistic paint brush strokes.

Now the Leg, I've never had to virtually move a limb before on photoshop so this was a first experience xP. Nathalie tells me about the Magnetic Lasso (while im very slowly going around with a mouse xD) which is so much easier selecting the leg then using transform to place it lower. I used 2 layers, one of the original position and one of the new position then erasing and heal brushing the bits I need gone while the other layer kept the bits I needed - all make the finish like it was meant to be like that all along ! Maybe an easy thing more many artists/photoshopper's, but for a first attempt I was very proud haha !

As you can see the tweaked version just looks better and makes more sense.



TFinished !!

So, after checking and checking again, I put in a fresh sheet of gloss photo paper (of course xD) fired up the printer and let it do its thing. After it printed I let it dry for a long time and was super careful not to get any messy finger prints. Unfortunalet i dont have a paper gilotene for that super straight cut, so I just can to be super slow and carfull with a pair of scissors xD.

Prior to this I did print out just the template lines and cut them out to make sure the sizes were correct, which they were. But for some reason when I printed out the actual design I had to trim extra off for it to fit, thats why you may notice the Lion Guard logo is a little off center. I still have the project file so will give it another go but for now this will do to show you all ^^.

I started this project when I was Furloughed from my job due to Covid-19 and the UK went into Lockdown. It was a perfect oppurtunity for me to Kill some time, and ended up taking -alot- of time, this was not a bad thing though. I have Learnt so much during doing all this, Photoshop tools, encoding, video editing, stream ripping, Nero being a very good creation tool....but a massive pain at same time !

Stay safe, and thanks for reading me rambling on ! xP.

(Excuse the very basic HTML webpage I made for this, just needed to make something quick and simple to place on my Server, I refuse to use these "Free Webpage" creation websites then plaque it with Ads)

IMG-20200510-192611684 IMG-20200510-192641977 IMG-20200510-192625478 IMG-20200510-195551788 IMG-20200510-195610895

Oh, and just for the laugh xD


Thats alot of GBs for this project xD


All Images and video content are © to Disney. I have no intention to sell or reproduce this project for financial gain whatsoever. This is a personal project intended for myself only.