Earlier this week, the Walt Disney Company barfed pixie dust on everyone with a bunch of huge announcements, including Patty Jenkins directing a Star Wars movie, the director for the MCU’s Fantastic Four movie and news that Chris Evans’ would be voicing a major role in a Pixar movie. The Captain America star will lead upcoming Toy Story spinoff Lightyear, replacing Tim Allen, who has been attached to the voice role for 25 years.
There is a twist, though, to make note of. Chris Evans will be playing the human Buzz Lightyear that the Toy Story character has apparently been based on this whole time. The announcement detailed that the Pixar flick is currently set to be released in summer 2022. But not everyone was happy to hear that Tim Allen would not be fronting the project:
We still don’t know much about Lightyear, other than Disney’s description. Chris Evans will be playing a “young test pilot” who becomes the Space Ranger “we all know him to be today." We’d imagine the Pixar project will be a science fiction adventure that may take the original Buzz on a memorable space adventure to “infinity & beyond” and so forth. But the knee-jerk reaction for many was in mourning Tim Allen’s involvement:
Tim Allen has been attached to the role since Pixar first began, and there are a lot of emotions tied into his Buzz Lightyear. It wouldn’t be unlike Ryan Gosling being cast as Woody in a cowboy origin movie. The actors are so tied to these voice roles that news like this is, of course, going to bother some people. One Twitter user shared why they are completely against it:
We’ll have to wait and see what Pixar’s vision is for Lightyear and, for many, this movie needs more convincing for it to justify Chris Evans over Tim Allen. We don’t know the inside baseball on this project. Allen could have very well been asked first and decided to pass after years and years of voicing the character. Plus, it looks like Lightyear is trying to separate itself from its Toy Story roots and use the popular character as a jumping off point to do some completely different storytelling. Here’s another harsh reaction to the news:
Since the announcement was made, Chris Evans has been vocal about his role not stepping on Tim Allen’s legacy, expressing in a response that “no one could ever touch his performance." The MCU actor also said he loved the pitch Pixar delivered to him and eased fans by sharing how excited he is for the role. And it should be pointed out that not everyone hates this shift in actors:
Chris Evans is certainly finding a lot of work following Avengers: Endgame, such as starring with Ryan Gosling and Ana de Armas in the Russo Brothers’ The Gray Man and a Netflix movie with Leo DiCaprio, Jennifer Lawrence and Meryl Streep. The next Pixar release is Soul, coming to Disney+ on Christmas Day.