Lightyear is a sci-fi action adventure and the definitive origin story of Buzz Lightyear produced by Pixar Animation Studios and Walt Disney Pictures.
The film is not a story about the Toy Story action figure, but the origin of the in-universe astronaut who inspired the cartoon and toy. It follows the legendary Space Ranger on an intergalactic adventure alongside a group of ambitious recruits and his robot companion Sox.
As we approach Lightyear’s June 17, 2022 release date (in theaters as well as IMAX), here are five interesting facts about the movie that you need to know.
Andy’s Favorite Movie
“Lightyear” is the movie that Andy saw that made him want a Buzz Lightyear toy. Film Director Angus MagLane explained that Andy might not even have watched “Lightyear” when it was a new movie. To MacLane, the movie was made in the late 1970s or early 1980s. Andy watched the movie some time after.
“I’ve always wondered what movie was Buzz from,” director-screenwriter Angus MacLane explains. “Why couldn’t we just make that movie? So that’s what we did.”
Lightyear is “the movie that Andy saw that changed his life… Andy’s Star Wars.”
This will be the second Toy Story spin-off
Lightyear will be the second Toy Story spin-off after Buzz Lightyear of Star Command. Buzz Lightyear of Star Command was a TV show that premiered in 2000 and ran for 65 episodes.
Chris Evans as Buzz Lightyear
Since Toy Story first premiered in 1995, Tim Allen has voiced the animated Buzz Lightyear toy character in every sequel. Lightyear has recast Tim Allen with Chris Evans and producer Galyn Susman explains why.
Susman says that not confusing audiences was paramount to making Lightyear work. “There was so much initial confusion about our pitch, that it became really clear that we needed to have some clear delineators,” she tells IGN. “We needed a different voice. And our Buzz had to have hair. We needed some things that made it clear that this is not the Toy Story Buzz.”
IMAX 1.43:1 Aspect Ratio
Pixar Animation Studios is breaking new ground with Lightyear. A fully virtual IMAX camera with an aspect ratio of 1.43:1 was created and used by Pixar to shoot a version of the film suitable for IMAX showings, enabling several scenes in Lightyear to be shot on a bigger scale than any other previous animated project.
“I think this is the first animated movie that has been made for IMAX in this way,” said Jeremy Lasky, Lightyear‘s director of photography (via ComicBook.com).
SOX is Buzz’s personal companion robot, who is also a cat. SOX not only serves the role of an adorable sidekick but is also Buzz’s “constant” through time.
SOX isn’t just cuteness though, he is outfitted with at least 17 features that makes him formidable even though he’s small and lovable.