‘Lightyear’ Blasts Off to $5.2 Million at Thursday Box Office

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“Lightyear,” Disney and Pixar’s animated feature that’s a spinoff and origin story of the beloved “Toy Story” character Buzz Lightyear, made $5.2 million at the box office in its preview screenings. The film opens in the U.S. and Canada on Friday in over 4,200 theaters.

The preview total for “Lightyear” was inclusive of select early preview showtimes that took place at 6 p.m. Wednesday across 500 IMAX and PLF auditoriums, while all other previews began at 3 p.m. on Thursday. In all it will open on 400 IMAX screens, 850 PLFs, 2,200 3-D locations and 190 D-Box/4-D motion screens.

Most projections for “Lightyear” have the film landing in the $80 million range, which would lift it higher than the $72 million opening of “Sonic the Hedgehog 2” from this spring, the other major family film theatrical release from this year. That film made $6.25 million in its previews.

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Though some other comps for “Lightyear” could include Pixar’s “Inside Out,” which made $3.7 million in Thursday previews and opened to $90.4 million, and 2019’s “Toy Story 4” did $12 million in previews and opened to $120 million.

“Lightyear” is directed by Angus MacLane and takes a new look at Buzz Lightyear. But the film explains that in the ’90s, the “Toy Story” protagonist Andy saw a movie and bought a Buzz Lightyear toy based on that movie — and “Lightyear” is that movie.

Chris Evans voices the “real” Buzz Lightyear, and the film also features the voice work of Uzo Aduba, Peter Sohn, Keke Palmer, Taika Waititi and Dale Soules.

“Lightyear” has an 80% score on Rotten Tomatoes.

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