Lightyear Star Chris Evans Speaks Out on Reciting Tim Allen's Iconic Toy Story Line

Chris Evans is boldly going where Tim Allen has gone before: to infinity and beyond. In Pixar’s Lightyear, the Captain America actor voices “the original” Buzz Lightyear — the legendary space ranger who inspired the toy famously voiced by Tim Allen since the first Toy Story in 1995. In an interview with Variety at the Lightyear world premiere, Evans revealed how he found a voice for the man behind the toy in the Buzz Lightyear origin story blasting into theaters on June 17.

“It’s tough. The first time you have to do that iconic line — ‘To infinity and beyond’ — you kind of just do a shameless Tim Allen impression because it’s intimidating,” Evans said. “But Angus [MacLane, director] and everyone at Pixar is so collaborative. You let them guide you, and eventually you feel comfortable enough to try and make your own tracks in the snow and find your own interpretation while still using Tim Allen as the blueprint.”

In the world of Toy Story, Allen’s Buzz is the at-first delusional toy who believes he’s a real member of the elite Universe Protection Unit of the Space Ranger Corps. Allen voiced Buzz in all four Toy Story movies between 1995 and 2019, also voicing the character in numerous shorts and specials. (Patrick Warburton voiced the space ranger in Buzz Lightyear of Star Command, the 2D-animated spinoff series that exists in the Toy Story universe.)

“‘Set in the world of Toy Story‘ is kind of weird. Another way to get at it, it’s a straightforward sci-fi action film about the Buzz Lightyear character,” Lightyear director MacLane explained to EW. “In the Toy Story universe, it would be like a movie that maybe Andy would have seen, that would have made him want a Buzz Lightyear figure.”

MacLane clarified Lightyear doesn’t end with “Andy eating popcorn,” referring to the child who owned the toy Buzz in Toy Story. “This is its own thing… This is standalone. It’s the Buzz Lightyear movie. It’s that character but as the space ranger, not as the toy.”

From Disney and Pixar comes an animated sci-fi action-adventure – the definitive origin story of Buzz Lightyear (voice of Chris Evans), the hero who inspired the toy. Lightyear follows the legendary space ranger on an intergalactic adventure alongside ambitious recruits, Izzy, Mo and Darby, and his robot companion Sox. As this motley crew embark on their toughest mission yet, they must learn to work as a team to escape the evil Zurg and his dutiful robot army who are never far behind.

Starring Chris Evans, Uzo Aduba, James Brolin, Mary McDonald-Lewis, Keke Palmer, Efren Ramirez, Peter Sohn, Dale Soules, Isiah Whitlock Jr., and Taika Waititi, Pixar’s Lightyear opens exclusively in theaters June 17.


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