Lightyear director Angus MacLane reveals the creative choice behind the film’s major twist and reveals the film’s villain, Zurg.
Warning: major spoilers for Light year Below!
The director of Light year reveals the decision behind Zurg’s twist in the film. Since its introduction in toy story in 1995, Buzz Lightyear’s backstory was that he was a space guard sworn to protect the galaxy from the evil Emperor Zurg. In the sequel to the film in 1999 toy story 2audiences got to see Zurg for the first time, and it’s revealed that Zurg is actually Buzz’s father, in a nice homage to the twisted ending of The Empire Strikes Back.
When it was announced that Pixar was making Light yearthe in-universe movie that inspired Buzz Lightyear’s toyline, it was all about how the movie would incorporate Zurg being Buzz’s father into the movie, or if they would only consider the toy story 2 moment as a joke. In Light year, the evil Emperor Zurg is actually revealed to be a future version of Buzz (voiced by James Brolin), who traveled back in time to change his future. In a clever joke from the previous movie, when Buzz sees the older version of himself, he first assumes it’s his father.
The decision to change Zurg’s backstory was revealed by Light year director Angus MacLane in an interview with IGN. The filmmakers tried to work with the father element, but realized he was distracted from the story as audience members would just wait for his father’s reveal. In the end, the choice came down to a thematic choice, as making Zurg an older Buzz had to do with Buzz being his worst enemy, both emotionally and now physically manifesting in the form of his self. older. McLane said:
“We explored the dad angle. But the whole time you were like, ‘That’s his dad. It’s his father. Go for it. It’s his father. And then you would really have to establish that his father was important in some way. But what we really discovered, what we were really looking for, is the idea that Buzz’s greatest enemy is himself, both literally and figuratively, and that it’s his passion to go up in the time and to correct error which is actually more self-destructive and world-destroying because it is his pride.
While Zurg appears to have been beaten at the end of the film, Light years The after-credit scene reveals Zurg floating in space with his eyes lit up, implying that the villain will return to threaten Buzz another day. While the hope might have been that the filmmakers could make a sequel to Light yearthe possibility seems far less clear as the film appears to be underperforming at the box office. Light year is in competition with Jurassic World: Dominion for the number 1 spot at the weekend box office and will come well below the opening weekend of the last two toy story movies.
Canon has become an important aspect among creators and fans alike, most recently highlighted in public reactions to some of the recent star wars series on Disney+, with many accusers Obi Wan Kenobi breaking canon writers. Lucasfilm and Marvel pride themselves on their strict canon rules, but this is the second time a Pixar film has had to break canon to tell its story, as monster university sees Mike and Sully meet at college where Monsters Inc. features a line referring to how they knew each other in kindergarten. In both cases of monster university and Light yearthe filmmakers decide to move forward with the decision to tell their story best instead of remaining chained to the constraints of canon for what in many cases are single lines or jokes.
Next: How Monsters University Pieced Together Mike and Sulley’s Origin
Every Upcoming Movie In The Marvel Cinematic Universe
About the Author