The buzz around Pixar’s new ‘Lightyear’ movie


Buzz the Space Ranger from the new ‘Lightyear’ movie is depicted on the left. On the right is Buzz Lightyear from the 2000’s movie ‘Buzz Lightyear of Star Command: The Adventure Begins’. Photo via Screen Rant

Audra Gullquist, Layout and Design Editor

Pixar’s new movie, “Lightyear” is a prequel of “Toy Story” that focuses on the real Buzz Lightyear’s previous life as a space ranger, and his rise to fame within Star Command. The movie is set to be released on June 17, 2022. It introduces the human space ranger that inspired the “Buzz Lightyear” toy that was featured in the “Toy Story” franchise. The producers of Lightyear stated that it is not a “Toy Story” spin off. The movie does not include any characters from Toy Story. Instead, it focuses on the origin of the “Buzz Lightyear” story and the adventures that the real-life Lightyear endured. They also stated that while writing “Toy Story,” they planned on providing a backstory to Lightyear in the future. This could explain Lightyear’s existential crisis in “Toy Story” about him believing that he is a real space ranger and not a toy. 

This is not the first time Lightyear has been in the spotlight by starring in his own movie. In 2000, Pixar released the movie “Buzz Lightyear of Star Command: The Adventure Begins.” This movie focused on Lightyears’s ongoing battle with his nemesis the evil Emperor Zurg. The 70-minute animated movie received a lot less positive reviews than “Toy Story,” which was loved by many fans. A cartoon series called “Buzz Lightyear of Star Command” was later developed based on the movie. However, the TV series was also received by fans with little praise and only ran for about six months. 

Lightyear is controversially voiced by Chris Evans and not Tim Allen, who voiced Lightyear in the “Toy Story” series, “Buzz Lightyear of Star Command: The Adventure Begins” and “Buzz Lightyear of Star Command.” It has been released by the producers that they chose Evans to voice Lightyear because their new movie is not a direct continuation of the “Toy Story” franchise. They wanted to create and star a completely different Lightyear compared to the toy version that was shown in “Toy Story.” However, fans theorized that this recasting decision was made due to Allen’s recent political controversies. Evans says he is extremely excited to voice Buzz and stated to reporters that, “The phrase ‘a dream come true’ gets thrown around a lot, but I’ve never meant it more in my life.” Lightyear is produced by Galyn Susman, who is known for her work on “Toy Story 4,” “Up,” “Ratatouille” and “Monsters, Inc.,” and was written by Angus MacLane, who is known for his work on “Finding Dory” and “The Incredibles.” 

Lightyear has been a very popular character in pop culture since 1995 when the first “Toy Story” movie was released. Lightyear’s character arc throughout the five “Toy Story” movies has made him into a beloved character. Although there is not much released about the new “Lightyear” movie, it can be predicted from the movie trailer that Lightyear will still have the same lovable personality that made so many fans obsess over the character.

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