With Light year premiering on the 17th, many fans who have grown up with the franchise and animated characters are wondering why Tim Allen hasn’t been called out for his work as Buzz. Landing the voice role of the Space Ranger in 1995 with the original toy storyand spanning many works with the IP up to the most recent toy story 4 in 2019 – it’s been almost 25 years – many scratched their heads when it was announced that Chris Evans would voice young Buzz in Light year.
The slight turmoil comes from Allen’s deep association with the character, tied to the fact that unlike a traditional movie (outside of reboots and Easter eggs) where actors can no longer maintain the character’s image in Due to physical factors like aging, no one really needed to think about a non-Tim Allen voiced Buzz Lightyear. But like Light year producer Galyn Susman explains, “Tim Allen is Buzz Lightyear the toy. We weren’t doing toy story film. We’re doing the Buzz Lightyear movie.” Separating the character from the toy story franchise, this film is intended to be a “live-action” of Buzz Lightyear as a young cadet. Even Allen was frankly surprised saying he wasn’t “replaced” and that Light year is a brand new movie.
Light year director Angus MacLane also explained that Allen’s portrayal needed to be more goofy as Light year has more dramatic scenes where someone like Evans is best suited for the job. “Tim’s version of Buzz is a little goofier and a little dumber, and so he’s the comic relief. In this movie, Buzz is the action hero. He’s serious, ambitious, and funny, but no joke. in a goofy way that would undermine the drama.Chris Evans has the seriousness and that movie star quality that our character needed to separate him and the movie from the toy version of Tim in Toy Story.
Clearly humbled to play such an iconic character, Evans was respectful of Allen’s work as Buzz and even said no one could “touch his (Allen’s) performance.” Check out Chris Evans’ rendition of the famous line “To infinity and beyond” below.
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