Patricia Heaton Rips Disney for Not Casting Tim Allen in ‘Lightyear,’ Social Media Sounds Off

by Samantha Whidden

With “Lightyear” hitting theaters this Friday (June 17th), “Toy Story” fans are sharing their thoughts about the upcoming flick. Among those sharing opinions is “The Middle” star Patricia Heaton, who noticed Tim Allen wasn’t a key part of the upcoming animation film. 

In a tweet on Tuesday (June 14th), the actress revealed she saw the trailer for the upcoming “Toy Story” spinoff and wasn’t happy with Tim Allen not being cast for the Buzz Lightyear role. This is a role that Allen has had throughout the “Toy Story” franchise. However, Disney/Pixar offered up the role to “Captain America” star Chris Evans. 

“All I can say is Disney/Pixar made a HUGE mistake in not casting my pal Tim Allen,” Heaton stated in her tweet. “The role that he originated, the role that he owns. Tim IS Buzz! Why would they completely castrate this iconic, beloved character?”

Although Heaton’s nostalgia is entirely understanding, Twitter users are coming to quickly defend the film due to the fact that it is not based on the Buzz Lightyear toy (which Tim Allen has been cast for), but rather it is about Lightyear as an actual “person.”

Twitter Reacts to Patricia Heaton’s Hot Take

On Twitter user explained, “This new Buzz is what the Toy Buzz is based off. The new Buzz is supposed to be the ‘Real Buzz.’ Tim’s Buzz is the Toy Buzz. Two different Buzz Lightyear characters… Get it now?”

“Just to be clear, this isn’t Buzz Lightyear the toy,” the user also shared. “This is the origin story of the human Buzz Lightyear that the toy is based on.”

Heaton clarified she understands the “Lightyear” is an origin story. But noted that the character became so beloved due to Allen. “Why remove the one element that makes us want to see it?” She asked and used the #stupidhollywooddecisions hashtag. 

Chris Evans Talks the ‘Intimidating’ Task of Voice Buzz in ‘Lightyear’ after Tim Allen 

While speaking to Variety earlier this month, Chris Evans, who is playing Buzz in “Lightyear,” spoke about how intimidating it was to voice the beloved “Toy Story” character after Tim Allen. 

“The first time you have to do that iconic line, ‘To Infinity and Beyond…,’ you kind of just do a shameless Tim Allen impression. It’s intimidating,” Evans admitted. “But Angus [MacLane, the film’s director] and everyone at Pixar was so collaborative, and you kind of let them guide you. Eventually, you feel comfortable enough to make your own tracks in the snow and find your own interpretation, while still using Tim Allen as the blueprint.”

Keke Palmer, who plays Izzy Hawthorne in “Lightyear,” praised Evans for his work on the film. “Wait until you guys hear how Chris Evans did Buzz. A lot of people probably feel like, ‘Oh my gosh, how can you do Buzz again? How can you replace Tim?’ There’s no replacing, but there is some evolution, and Chris nailed it. I can’t wait for the kids to get into it, and the parents.”