Comedian Tim Allen is sharing his thoughts on “Lightyear” for the first time.
The “Home Improvement” star voiced the character of Buzz Lightyear, an astronaut toy, in the “Toy Story” franchise. Pixar’s “Lightyear,” now in theaters, focuses instead on Buzz, the fictional movie character that inspired the Buzz toy, and is voiced by Chris Evans.
In an interview with “Extra” that aired this week, Allen attempted to set that record straight and, in doing so, shared his somewhat mixed take on the new film.
“The short answer is I’ve stayed out of this because it has nothing to do [with my character],” he said. “We talked about this many years ago … but the brass that did the first four movies is not this. This is a whole new team that really had nothing to do with the first movies.”
“There’s really no ‘Toy Story’ Buzz without Woody,” Allen continued, referring to the cowboy toy character voiced by Tom Hanks in the “Toy Story” franchise.
Noting that he assumed “Lightyear” would be a live-action film, he added, “It’s a wonderful story. It just doesn’t seem to have any connection to the toy. ... It just has no relationship to Buzz. I wish there was a better connection to this.”
Watch a clip from Tim Allen’s “Extra” interview below.
The somewhat confusing premise of “Lightyear” has prompted some fans on social media to accuse Pixar ― a subsidiary of Disney ― of replacing Allen with Evans.
In June, “Everybody Loves Raymond” star Patricia Heaton tweeted that not casting Allen in “Lightyear” was a “HUGE mistake,” adding, “Tim IS Buzz! Why would they completely castrate this iconic, beloved character?”
Later that day, she clarified her thoughts somewhat by noting that the new film was “an origin story.” Still, she griped: “Why remove the one element that makes us want to see it?”
Speaking to Entertainment Weekly earlier this month, Evans admitted to having “reservations” about taking on the role of Buzz Lightyear given Allen’s “Toy Story” performances.
“I love what Tim Allen did, and I love what ‘Toy Story’ meant to me,” he told the publication. “You have to understand there will be a lot of people who have an idea in their heads, but this is like when I signed on to Captain America. You know there is a baked-in-the-cake fanbase, but that fanbase is there because they have an understanding in their mind of what the character already is. So you have to honor that when you’re making your choices.”