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Is ‘Lightyear’ Suffering from Tim Allen, Same-Sex Kiss Controversies?

'Toy Story' spinoff gets 'soft' opening as movie theaters roar back to life

The summer box office is performing as if a global pandemic never happened.

Witness (all figures U.S. box office via Box Office Mojo):

Yet Disney’s “Lightyear,” the high-profile spinoff from Pixar’s “Toy Story” franchise, opened to a “soft” $5.2 million Thursday night. That’s the take from Scott Mendelson, a progressive film scribe at

Lightyear | Official Trailer 2

For context, “Toy Story 4” generated a whopping $12 million in 2019 from its Thursday preview screenings.

Based on the opening figures, Pixar’s “Lightyear” could earn $52 million, according to Mendelson. It’s a far cry from earlier estimates, and a number he says would be lower than “most non-event Pixar ‘originals.'”

What happened? Let’s start with two self-inflicted controversies.

RELATED: Unwoke Disney Employees Have Had Enough 

First, Team Disney cut ties with “Toy Story” voice artist Tim Allen, who memorably played Buzz Lightyear in four installments. “Avengers” mainstay Chris Evans, a prominent progressive, got the call instead.

The move seemed odd given Allen’s connection to the saga and outstanding performances. Observers quickly noted Allen’s conservative bona fides may have hurt his chances at a new “Lightyear” production.

In Disney’s defense, the studio is re-teaming with Allen for an upcoming “Santa Clause” series.

The change still made little sense and generated ill will on social media, coming at a time when many Americans are furious with Disney’s progressive agenda.

Next, the film’s creative team not only made the movie’s one romantic relationship a same-sex union but included a lesbian Space Ranger named Hawthorne (Uzo Aduba) kissing her long-time partner.

That gender-based buss, which comes early in the film, outraged some parents who prefer family-friendly content avoid culture war skirmishes. Talk of an audience boycott over the sequence greeted the film’s release. Outside the U.S. a dozen Muslim nations already banned “Lightyear” from showing in local theaters.

Evans didn’t take the diplomatic route over the kerfuffle, saying the film’s critics will “die off like dinosaurs.”

It’s hardly the first film to endure social media-fueled outrage, from the Left or Right. Typically these digital dustups don’t damage the box office totals. That’s especially true for bulletproof franchises like the MCU and, up until now, Pixar.

Did something change? 

Disney is having a horrible, no good year from a cultural perspective. Progressives raged against the company for not immediately protesting Florida’s falsely named “Don’t Say Gay” legislation. Conservatives, in turn, howled over news that Disney will be actively using its content for propaganda purposes.

Is this a rare case of Twitter actually being like real life?

RELATED: Kevin Sorbo: Walt Disney Is Spinning in His Grave

It’s very early “Lightyear’s” release cycle. Word of mouth may still ride to the rescue, although early reviews are far from glowing by Pixar standards. The film should have the kiddie market to itself, at least for now (both “Bad Guys” and “The Bob’s Burgers Movie,” already in theaters, pose no economic threat at this point).

Should “Lightyear” underperform, though, Hollywood may realize stirring controversies can impact the bottom line. 

UPDATE: Two days ago, Variety predicted “Lightyear” would earn between $70-80 million on its opening weekend, far below what “Toy Story 4” earned in its debut frame ($120 million).

Now, says the film is tracking for a $55+ million haul.


  1. I am heterosexual, married and with kids. The reasoning that kids exposed to a same sex kiss is going to turn him or her gay is a stupid and blatantly hypocritical way to excuse personal hate and ignorance towards other individuals. Bugs bunny in drag kissing his hunter on the lips on multiple episodes, not a peep. Sponge Bob in drag on multiple episodes kissing Mr crab….not a peep. Pepe Lepew ( a sexual pervert by the way ) chasing, harassing and pushing himself to kiss a stray cat…not a peep. Hundreds of TV shows, cartoons and movies that millions of children watch every day have not been an issue with drag or kissing until now, simply because it has been politized .
    Disney is on the right track and time will show it, I have no doubt .

    1. Well, according to the $188 billion dollar loss in their latest earnings report, I would have to respectfully disagree.

    2. Well, according to the $188 billion dollar loss in their latest earnings report, I would have to respectfully disagree.

    3. No one is saying its going to turn someone gay. Although its very obvious that societal pressure and peer pressure does have a role in people choosing to be gay or straight. Otherwise the kids of just about every Hollywood actor wouldn’t be queer. Same with kids of academia. And there is nothing hateful about not wanting kids exposed to something. Im getting very tired of this idea that either you need to expose your kids to gay lifestyle, or you hate them. I dont hate people who practice S&M. But I wouldn’t expose my kids to that either. I dont hate military snipers. But I wouldn’t expose my kid to that either. Bugs bunny in drag was 100% fine. It was pointing out the obvious; That a male dressed as a female is funny, and not normal. Thats probably why it didn’t bother anyone. same with a male chasing around females. Its natural, and didn’t bother anyone. Now we have come to a point where we want to make normal things obsolete, and deviant things wholesome? Not happening. Maybe 10 years ago, I would have agreed with you. But now we are all seeing where this is going, and how much worse society has become, and how much more unhappy and unhealthy kids have become in such a short period of time. N o one is telling you how to raise your kids. get them a lap dance from a gay pro if you want. But leave other people’s kids alone.

  2. What’s truly hilarious is that if Andy saw this movie in 1995 as stated in the opening text, a same sex kiss would never have been okay to include in a big budget, mainstream studio film. Ellen DeGeneres hadn’t even come out yet. Maybe tests why it was cut in the first place and should’ve stayed cut.

  3. Not falling for it Disney. Just lost 4 ticket sales. Stay in your lane and go back to your roots not what you think is on “trend” I don’t need you brainwashing my kids.

  4. In Snow White, Snow White was 14 and was kissed by a 31 year old prince while she was unconscious. Now try telling me some side romance of a lesbian couple is supposedly sexualizing children more than that. In addition, Stephanie Beatriz, the voice actor for Mirabel in Encanto is bisexual, and Mirabel wears a bisexual flag on her dress the entire movie. Yes, things are changing, but we need to embrace them and make the world a better place.

    1. You don’t think it’s overkill that companies like Disney and Netflix are trying to force these ideals into almost everything they make? It’s not “normalizing” anything. It’s Rainbow capitalism. The incessant pandering is actually working against the cause. The woke left does not want equality; they want to dominate through canceling, violent mobs, and bullying. The woke left has become exactly what they claim to be fighting against. Many people of all backgrounds, genders, political affiliation, and race are tired of being exploited by Hollywood. It’s now become the norm that the production companies have a queer, minority, and white devil checklist before any media can be released. It’s not inclusive or progressive; it’s highly offensive and many people are sick of it.

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