Entertainment

Chris Evans to play ‘original Buzz Lightyear’ in new Pixar movie

Fans were confused about how the Sudbury native would be playing "the original Buzz Lightyear."

Chris Evans will play Buzz Lightyear in Disney-Pixar's "Lightyear." Disney-Pixar

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A new role for Chris Evans next summer is set to take the Sudbury native to infinity and beyond.

As part of Disney’s massive programming announcement on Thursday evening, the company announced that Evans would be voicing the “original Buzz Lightyear” in the upcoming Pixar movie “Lightyear,” which is slated to hit theaters June 17, 2022.

After Disney fans expressed confusion about what “the original Buzz Lightyear” meant,  given that Tim Allen had voiced the character in every “Toy Story” movie since 1995, Evans tweeted that he wouldn’t be playing “Buzz Lightyear the toy,” but instead would be voicing “the human Buzz Lightyear that the toy is based on.”

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This only brought about more confusion, after which Evans tweeted a video from Pixar explaining the full pitch behind “Lightyear.”

“When we created the very first ‘Toy Story,’ we designed Buzz Lightyear with the idea that he was a toy based on some very cool character from an epic blockbuster film,” a Pixar employee said in the video. “Well, all these years later, we decided it’s time to make that film. ‘Lightyear’ is the definitive origin story of the original Buzz Lightyear, and it reveals how this young test pilot became the space ranger we all know him to be today.”

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Over on Instagram, where he was unconstrained by Twitter’s 280-character limit, Evans expanded on how he came to accept the role and credited Allen for his years of work as Lightyear.

“My team could barely contain their excitement when they told me that Pixar had a pitch for me. All they said was ‘Buzz Lightyear,'” Evans wrote on Instagram. “I didn’t know what that meant, since Tim Allen is Buzz Lightyear, and no one could ever touch his performance. I needed to know how this character was different and why this story was worth telling.

“I can say 2 things with absolute confidence: 1. I didn’t stop smiling through the ENTIRE pitch. Ear to ear. 2. Everyone can rest easy. And get very excited,” Evans continued. “Trust me when I say that they REALLY know what they’re doing over there. This one is gonna [be] special, and it doesn’t step on a single thing. I can’t even put my excitement into words. I smile every time I think about it.”

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Evans is certainly keeping busy after stepping away from the role of Captain America in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. He will be playing a lead role in Netflix’s “The Gray Man,” an action-thriller that is the streaming giant’s most expensive movie to date, and has reportedly joined the cast of Netflix’s “Don’t Look Up,” which is currently filming in the Boston area.

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