Disney has created a pattern of remaking/reimagining their classic properties through live-action projects. And yet, fans have always wondered in the back of their minds when Pixar’s stories might get the “fresh coat of paint” treatment. Wonder no more, as Pixar is now making a solo film for one of their most beloved characters, but rather than going a live-action direction, there is instead a wholly different huge twist. Prepare for Lightyear, the story of Buzz’s exploits as a Space Ranger in Star Command, the brand new movie coming down the pipeline and starring none other than a former MCU star.
This brand new approach to the Toy Story character is an absolute stunner, and the initial pitch to Lightyear has it all. In addition to the sharp character art you see at the head of this story, there’s an absolutely gorgeous title treatment for the film. Oh, and did we mention Chris Evans is playing Buzz Lightyear now? Because Captain America just became the new voice of Star Command’s favorite ranger, and he's got this new logo, shared on Twitter, coming with him:
Pixar Chief Creative Officer/story wizard Pete Docter announced the project during today's Disney investor presentation, and the timing couldn’t have been sweeter. Naturally, there’s not a lot of plot details for Lightyear, save for one crucial piece of information: Chris Evans’ iteration of Buzz Lightyear is going to not only exist in the reality that Buzz once imagined for himself, we’re going to see his pre-Star Command days in action. Merely a test pilot at this point, his maverick ways will help him become the hero we know and love.
Though fans of Toy Story and its spinoffs are probably nodding their heads and saying, “Yeah, but we’ve seen this sort of thing before.” And they’d be right, partially, as we have seen Buzz Lightyear of Star Command show off Buzz’s "reality" through an animated series. However, Lightyear looks like a bold and gritty take that for the first time treats Buzz’s adventures with the reality of an action adventure similar to Top Gun or The Right Stuff. So it looks like Star Wars: Rogue Squadron was just the beginning of Disney’s high flying aspirations.
Lightyear is the first reimagining of a Pixar property, and who knows what sort of future projects this could inspire? Maybe an Up spin-off will show us Charles Muntz’s slow descent into madness? Perhaps the life and times of Auguste Gusteau from Ratatouille will get a bittersweet French romance film in the vein of The Umbrellas of Cherbourg? Neither of those possibilities sound all that bad, especially when Lightyear sounds so damned good.
Lightyear is slated for theatrical release in 2022, and as soon as we have more information on what’s going on, we’ll reveal them when they break. But oh wow, is it going to be a hell of a wait, so we’ll need some distractions in the meantime. Quick, head to our 2021 release schedule, and learn more about the Disney/Pixar offerings coming in the interim.