The new Pixar movie Light year is an oddity for the studio. It’s a tie-in to the Toy Story film series, though it doesn’t take place in the same universe or continuity, and doesn’t feature characters who are toys. (No, Sox the Robotic Cat doesn’t count as a toy, though of course you can already buy toy versions of Sox.) The film is intended as adult sci-fi more than a children’s film, even if it’s not a kid’s movie. ‘It’s safe for kids and full of humor alongside the serious issues of loss, grief and moving on. Perhaps the weirdest thing about it is that it’s full of opportunities for the types of big emotions that are Pixar’s stock in the trade, but it doesn’t lean into it like long time fans. Pixar date might be expected.
But another quirk about it is that it seems perfectly poised to set up any number of sequels or spinoffs, in a way that isn’t usually true of Pixar films. It comes more from the end of the movie than from the post-credits teasers, but a moment after the credits seems like the sort of “sequel to come” announcement that’s much more typical for other movie studios, whether they’re working in animation or live action.
[Ed. note: Major spoilers ahead for Lightyear, including end spoilers.]
Does Lightyear have a post-credits scene?
You know that, otherwise we wouldn’t be posting this article. Don’t get me wrong, “Does this movie have a post-credits scene?” coins (along with the “End of the Movie, Explained” recaps) are so incredibly popular and heavily trafficked that we wouldn’t be surprised if there were are outlets there displaying “Do Top Gun: Maverick do you have a post-credits scene? » articles when the answer is “No!” and there is not much to say afterwards.
But that’s not true in this case. Light year has Three post-credits scenes – two quick gags, then the shortest possible teaser for the future. This latest teaser is coming everything the way to the end, even past Pixar’s familiar animated logo with the bouncing baby lamp, so don’t be fooled into heading for the door before it’s all over.
The first two credits scenes are just brief, light-hearted callback jokes: In a mid-credits scene, Buzz Lightyear’s new superior officer, Commander Burnside (Isiah Whitlock Jr.) sits at his desk while behind him, one of the giant beetle alien creatures that attack Buzz and his friends throughout the film is zapped by their colony’s giant new defense system, a dome made of lasers. Burnside, who mentioned the laser shield a few times in previous scenes, just laughs and repeats “Laser shield!” to himself, feeling clearly justified.
And after the credits, the film returns to square robot Deric (or as his chassis puts it, “ERIC”, with a scribbled “D” in front of the acronym), who was last seen trying to give to Buzz and his new junior- Izzy, Mo and Darby, friends of the rangers, head to an off-site outpost. It’s unclear what Deric’s function is in the team, but they clearly don’t think much of him as they walk away and always leave him looking at a map and advising them on distances and turns . By the end of the film, he’s still there, now excited about the scenic views they might see along the way.
Then he finally turns around and notices that they’re all long gone, and he’s disappointed. A little disappointing, especially after the film’s triumphant ending, which emphasizes bonding and friendship. It’s kind of sad to be Deric, thinking he’s on a team when that team didn’t even bother to tell him they were leaving. Treat your artificial intelligences better, people!
But after the credits, after the animated Pixar Animation Studios logo, after it really seems like it’s all over, there’s a split second of the film’s villain, Zurg, floating lifelessly in space. .until his red LED eyes suddenly light up back up, indicating he’s still alive, kicking, and ready to come back for the sequel.
Will there be a Lightyear sequel?
Good question! It’s early to ask that – it may depend on how the movie fares at the box office – but it does seem like Light year sets up for one. Not because Zurg is still around, but because the ending is so clearly phrased as “Now that all the main characters have learned their lessons about trust, teamwork, and living in the moment, real adventures can start!” When Buzz, Izzy, Mo and Darby take off on their first mission as newly empowered Space Rangers, it feels like their true story has only just begun.
When asked if Pixar was planning a follow-up, producer Galyn Susman told Polygon, “We haven’t closed the door. And yes, after a few weeks of sleep, we will discuss this further. Director Angus MacLane hinted that there are many more stories to tell about Buzz Lightyear: “We don’t get into his academy years so much, and we don’t get into the adventures afterwards. But it’s certainly quite open [for spinoffs].”
Is Lightyear a sequel or prequel to Buzz Lightyear from Star Command?
MacLane tells Polygon that the 2000 animated series Star Command’s Buzz Lightyear and the movie that launched it have nothing to do with Light year. He compares these shows to the Star Wars animated series of the 1980s Ewoks and Droids, non-canon series that tap into the same mythos as the Star Wars movies, but aren’t set in the same continuity. So he and others at Disney don’t need to tie a potential Light year fallout from this story, which is much more about the battle against Zurg. He is free to chart his own course for the future Light year sequels, which could potentially head into infinity…and beyond.
A Light year the prequel or sequel can take a number of forms. Since the launch of Disney Plus, Disney has done more with TV spinoffs from Pixar projects, from the At the top-series of related short films Off-peak days to the collection of micro shorts Pixar Popcorn thoroughly Monsters Inc. sequel series monsters at work. There is a Cars A TV series and a Pixar original TV series are also in the works. Light yearThe ending of seems particularly well suited to a space series approach, with Buzz and his Rangers traveling from planet to planet, encountering new life and civilizations, boldly going where etc, etc, you know the drill.
But given Pixar’s tendency to franchise its most successful releases – four Toy Story films and three Cars films so far, with The Incredibles, The world of Nemoand Monsters Inc. all also get spin-off movies – Light year might as well set up a theatrical sequel. His ending is entirely open to a big rematch with Zurg, or a series of clashes over time.
What Zurg would specifically want from Buzz at this point is unclear, as Buzz no longer has the power source Zurg was looking for. Maybe the story simply becomes “Zurg is trying to get his perfect power source from a bunch of different alien colonies and civilizations, and the Space Rangers are trying to stop him.” Or maybe, like Buzz, Zurg decides to start living in the present and just focus on becoming the kind of tyrannical warlord – and emperor! – he was in the animated series.
By the way, does Top Gun: Maverick have a post-credits scene?