Despite its iconic title character, “Lightyear” hasn’t reached infinity and beyond at the box office. According to Forbes, the spin-off film has yet to pay back its $200 million budget. Though the original Toy Story films are loved by audiences and boast a 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, Lightyear is a rare bombshell for Disney amid competition from franchises like Jurassic World and Minions, as well as backlash by conservatives for its LGBTQ characters. Additionally, Lightyear replaced Tim Allen, the original voice actor, with Knives Out star Chris Evans. Evans has explained (via Radio Times) what makes his Lightyear different from Allen’s version: Allen plays the toy, while Evans plays the human the toy is based on. Got it?
Amid the controversy, Allen was mostly silent until he told Extra, “The short answer is I stayed out of it because it’s unrelated [with my Buzz Lightyear].” Everyone Loves Raymond’s Patricia Heaton even jumped in, saying, “Why would they completely neuter this iconic, beloved character?” Yikes! Now Allen’s “Toy Story” co-star Tom Hanks joins the chorus.
Tom Hanks wanted to compete against Tim Allen
There has been a lot of controversy (via Forbes) surrounding Disney’s new movie, Lightyear. And now Tom Hanks has given his opinion on a Tim Allen recast. In a new interview with CinemaBlend, the legendary actor, who played Woody in the original Toy Story series, said: “How about this? I wanted to play Tim Allen, but then they wouldn’t let Tim Allen do it. I don’t get it.”
Hanks is referring to his own film, Elvis, in which he plays the manager of the King of Rock and Roll, Tom Parker. Although “Elvis” and “Lightyear” don’t necessarily have the same audience, they are currently showing in theaters at the same time. “Elvis” sits third and sixth respectively ahead of “Lightyear” at Box Office Mojo, while the newly released “Minions: The Rise of Gru” crushes everything in its path.
Though Hanks expressed confusion about the new “Lightyear” movie without Allen, he still diplomatically closed the soundbite: “As long as people are getting back to the movies…I want to go back to the movies with a bunch of strangers and go with something in common.” Amen!