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Last night’s Disney+ announcement was intense. Over the next three years, the streaming platform and entertainment conglomerate will release a dozen new Star Wars properties from TV shows to movies, a slew of new Marvel properties from What If to WandaVision to the Hawk-Eye show and more. Dozens of projects will be hitting the platform over the next three years as the company pivots to streaming in a major way. One of the most surprising projects, however, is Lightyear. But what the hell is it?Lightyear, as you can probably tell, is a prequel film in what could become the Toy Story extended universe (?). Lightyear will follow none other than Buzz Lightyear, the astronaut space cadet of the Toy Story franchise. Except — and this is a big clarification from what we’ve been led to understand about the universe of talking toys and the forgetful kids who lose them – the Buzz Lightyear we’ve come to know and love, voiced by Tim Allen, isn’t returning to the Lightyear movie as a young version of his toy-self. In fact, this movie suggests, Buzz the toy is based on a real-life astronaut who really existed as a real human being in the Toy Story universe, not just a toy. So the film is about “real-life” astronaut Buzz Lightyear who spawned a generation of kid’s toys before he spawned the generation of kid’s toys. That’s a lot to swallow – but it looks like it could be fun! Since the film is a Pixar property, it will be animated, but obviously, Ted Allen isn’t returning to voice the real-life Buzz. Instead, Chris Evans, AKA Captain America, will be taking the role of the real-life Buzz. The film comes out in the summer of 2022.
Lightyear is one of a series of Pixar films — last night was frankly huge — that was announced. Another Cars movie, an Up spinoff, Pixar’s first-ever animated series, Win or Lose, a movie called Luca, and another original film titled Turning Red are all slated in the works. Add that to a dozen Marvel announcements, a dozen Star Wars titles, and you’ve got yourself a couple of busy years spent on the couch — which is great, considering that “normal life” might not return until 2022, according to epidemiologists. Disney+
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