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Toy Story (franchise)

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Title: Toy Story (franchise)  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: List of highest-grossing animated films, Toy Story, Toy Story 3, Sheriff Woody, Toy Story Playland
Collection: Animated Film Series, Buddy Films, Disney Franchises, Media Franchises, Sentient Toys in Fiction, Toy Story
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Toy Story (franchise)

Toy Story
Creator Pixar
Films and television
Television series
Theatrical presentations
Video games
Television specials
Short films

Toy Story is a CGI animated film series and Disney media franchise that began with the original 1995 film, Toy Story, produced by Pixar and distributed by Walt Disney Pictures. The franchise focuses on a group of toys that secretly come to life and end up unexpectedly embarking on life-changing adventures. The first two films of the franchise were directed by John Lasseter, and the third by Lee Unkrich, who acted as the co-director of the second film (together with Lasseter and Ash Brannon). Lasseter will return to direct the upcoming fourth film.[1]

All three films, produced on a total budget of $320 million, have grossed more than $1.9 billion worldwide. Each film set box office records, with the third included in the top 15 all time worldwide films. Critics have given all three films extremely positive reviews.[2][3][4] Special Blu-ray and DVD editions of Toy Story and Toy Story 2 were released on March 23, 2010.[5] They were also re-released in theaters as a Disney Digital 3-D "double feature" for at least two weeks in October 2009.[6][7] The series is the 21st highest-grossing franchise worldwide, the fourth highest-grossing animated franchise (behind Shrek, Ice Age and Madagascar),[8] and is among the most critically acclaimed trilogies of all time. On November 1, 2011, all three Toy Story films were released in Disney Blu-ray 3D as a trilogy pack and as individual films.


  • Films 1
    • Toy Story (1995) 1.1
    • Toy Story 2 (1999) 1.2
    • Toy Story 3 (2010) 1.3
    • Toy Story 4 (2017) 1.4
  • Television 2
    • Toy Story of Terror! 2.1
    • Toy Story That Time Forgot 2.2
  • Toy Story Toons 3
    • Hawaiian Vacation 3.1
    • Small Fry 3.2
    • Partysaurus Rex 3.3
  • Reception 4
    • Box office performance 4.1
    • Critical response 4.2
    • Awards and nominations 4.3
      • Academy Awards 4.3.1
  • Cast and characters 5
  • Crew 6
  • Other media 7
    • Buzz Lightyear of Star Command 7.1
    • Buzz Lightyear of Star Command: The Adventure Begins (2000) 7.2
    • Comic books 7.3
    • Video games 7.4
    • Merchandising and software 7.5
  • Theme park attractions 8
  • Impact 9
    • "To infinity and beyond!" 9.1
  • References 10
  • External links 11


The Toy Story series consists of three CGI animated films: Toy Story (1995), Toy Story 2 (1999), and Toy Story 3 (2010). A fourth film, Toy Story 4, is in production and set for release in 2017. Toy Story was the first feature-length film to be made entirely using computer generated imagery. The films were produced by Pixar Animation Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Pictures.

All three films were universally acclaimed, with the first and second films getting a perfect 100%, and the third a 99% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The third film in the series is the second highest-grossing animated film and the 12th highest-grossing film of all time. It also became the third animated film in history to be nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture, following Beauty and the Beast and Up.

Toy Story (1995)

Toy Story, the first film in the franchise, was released on November 22, 1995. It was the first feature-length film created entirely by CGI and was directed by John Lasseter. The plot involves Andy getting a new Buzz Lightyear toy, and Woody thinking that he has been replaced as Andy's favorite toy. As a result of Woody's jealousy, he tries to knock Buzz behind a table, but accidentally knocks him out the window causing his allies to assume that he tried to murder Buzz and exile him from Andy's house. Determined to set things right, Woody attempts to save Buzz, and both try to escape from the house of the next-door neighbor Sid Phillips, who likes to torture and destroy toys. The film was critically and financially successful, grossing over $361 million worldwide.[2][9] The film was later re-released in Disney Digital 3-D as part of a double feature, along with Toy Story 2, for a 2-week run,[6] which was later extended due to its financial success.[7][10] In January 2013, a fan-made live-action version of the film was posted on YouTube which has gone on to have more than 12 million views.[11]

Toy Story 2 (1999)

Toy Story 2, the second film in the franchise, was released on November 24, 1999. John Lasseter reprises his role as director. The plot involves Woody getting stolen by a greedy toy collector named Al. Buzz and several of Andy's toys go around the Tri-County Area to save him. Toy Story 2 was not originally intended for release in theaters, but as a direct-to-video sequel to the original Toy Story, with a 60-minute running time.[12] However, Disney's executives saw how impressive the in-work imagery for the sequel was, and due to pressure from the main characters' voice actors Tom Hanks and Tim Allen, they decided to convert Toy Story 2 into a theatrical film.[13] It turned out to be an even greater success than the original Toy Story, grossing over $485 million worldwide.[14] The film was re-released in Disney Digital 3-D as part of a double feature, along with Toy Story, on October 2, 2009.[6]

Toy Story 3 (2010)

Toy Story 3, the third film in the franchise, was released eleven years later, on June 18, 2010. It is the first Toy Story film not to be directed by John Lasseter (although he remained involved in the film as executive producer), but by Lee Unkrich, who edited the first two films and co-directed the second. Set ten years after the events of the second film, the plot focuses on the toys accidentally being dropped off at a daycare center while their owner, Andy, is getting ready to go away to college. The film contains over 150 new characters, according to Pixar.[15] It is Pixar's highest-grossing film of all time worldwide and domestic, surpassing Finding Nemo. Toy Story 3 grossed more than the first and second films combined, making it the first animated film to have crossed the $1 billion mark.[16] In August 2010, it surpassed Shrek 2, becoming the highest-grossing animated film of all time until it was surpassed by Frozen, another Disney production, in March 2014.[17] Toy Story 3 was released on DVD and Blu-ray on November 2, 2010.[18]

Toy Story 4 (2017)

Toy Story 4 was announced by Disney during an investor's call in November of 2014, tentatively scheduled for theatrical release on June 16, 2017.[19] Lasseter will return to direct, while the screenplay will be written by Rashida Jones and Will McCormack from a story by Lasseter, Andrew Stanton, Pete Docter and Lee Unkrich. Galyn Susman will produce.[20][21] Lasseter has hinted that Toy Story 4 will be a love story and will pick up where Toy Story 3 left off.[22] According to Lasseter, "Toy Story 3 ended Woody and Buzz’s story with Andy so perfectly that for a long time, we never even talked about doing another Toy Story movie. But when Andrew, Pete, Lee and I came up with this new idea, I just could not stop thinking about it. It was so exciting to me, I knew we had to make this movie—and I wanted to direct it myself."[23]


In 1996, Pixar created a series of shorts known as "Toy Story Treats" which were used as interstitials on ABC Family and Disney's One Too. They did not necessarily follow the continuity from Toy Story, taking place before, during and after the events of the first film. They were aired roughly around the time of the Toy Story's release to home video.[24]

Pixar has also developed two 22-minute Toy Story television specials.[25] The first, a Halloween themed special, titled Toy Story of Terror!, aired on October 16, 2013 on ABC,[26] while the second, titled Toy Story That Time Forgot, will air on December 2, 2014.[27]

Toy Story of Terror!

A Halloween-themed 22-minute television special, titled Toy Story of Terror!,[28] aired on ABC on October 16, 2013.[28][29] It was directed by Angus MacLane, produced by Galyn Susman, with Tom Hanks, Tim Allen, Joan Cusack, Don Rickles, Wallace Shawn, Timothy Dalton, and Kristen Schaal reprising their roles of Woody, Buzz, Jessie, Mr. Potato Head, Rex, Mr. Pricklepants, and Trixie with Carl Weathers as Combat Carl and Stephen Tobolowsky as the motel manager.[29] Michael Giacchino composed the music for the special.[30] The film's soundtrack was released on October 15, 2013, on in digital format.[31]

The special follows the toys on their road trip, when a flat tire leads Bonnie and her mother to spend the night in a roadside motel. After one of the toys goes missing, the others begin to search for it, but they too are picked off one by one. The toys discover that they are being targeted by the hotel manager's pet iguana, Mr. Jones, who has been trained to steal the toys of his guests so that they can be sold via the Internet. The manager nearly succeeds in selling Woody and Jessie, but Jessie manages to escape—overcoming her old fear of being packed away in the process—and draw Bonnie's attention to the cabinet where the toys are being kept. As a result, Bonnie recovers her toys, and her mom calls in the police, who then presumably arrests the manager for theft.

Toy Story That Time Forgot

A Christmas-themed 22-minute[27] television special, titled Toy Story That Time Forgot, aired on ABC on December 2, 2014.[27] It was directed by [32]

Toy Story Toons

Logo for Toy Story Toons

In 2011, Pixar started releasing short animated films to supplement the Toy Story films, called Toy Story Toons. The shorts pick up where Toy Story 3 has left off, with Woody, Buzz, and Andy's other toys finding a new home at Bonnie's. So far, three shorts have been released; Hawaiian Vacation, Small Fry, and Partysaurus Rex. Another short,[33] titled Mythic Rock, was in development in 2013, but has not been confirmed for release As of December 2014.[34]

Hawaiian Vacation

Toy Story Toons: Hawaiian Vacation is a 2011 Pixar animated short directed by Gary Rydstrom. The short features characters from the Toy Story series and takes place after the events of Toy Story 3. It was released in theatres before Pixar's feature film Cars 2. In the short film, Ken and Barbie want to go to Hawaii, but get left behind, so Woody, Buzz and the other toys from the previous film console them by making a Hawaiian vacation in Bonnie's room.

Small Fry

Toy Story Toons: Small Fry,[35] another Toy Story short, premiered before The Muppets.[36] This marks the second time a Pixar short has screened with a non-Pixar film, after Tokyo Mater screened with Bolt. Directed by Angus MacLane, the short involves Buzz getting trapped at a fast food restaurant at a support group for discarded toys, with a kids' meal toy version of Buzz taking his place.[35]

Partysaurus Rex

Toy Story Toons: Partysaurus Rex, the third of the series, was released with the theatrical 3D re-release of Finding Nemo. Directed by Mark Walsh with music composed by electronic artist BT, the short involves Rex getting left in the bathroom and making friends with bath toys.[37]


Box office performance

Toy Story '​s first five days of domestic release (on Thanksgiving weekend), earned the film $39,071,176.[38] The film placed first in the weekend's box office with $29,140,617, and maintained its number one position at the domestic box office for the following two weekends. It was the highest-grossing domestic film in 1995,[39] and the third highest-grossing animated film at the time.[40]

Toy Story 2 opened at #1 over the Thanksgiving Day weekend, with a three-day tally of $57,388,839 from 3,236 theaters. It averaged $17,734 per theater over three days during that weekend, and stayed at #1 for the next two weekends. It was the third highest-grossing film of 1999.[41]

Toy Story 3 had a strong debut, opening in 4,028 theaters and grossing $41,148,961 at the box office on its opening day. In addition, Toy Story 3 had the highest opening day gross for an animated film on record. During its opening weekend, the film grossed $110,307,189, making it #1 for the weekend; it was the biggest opening weekend ever for any Pixar film. Toy Story 3 stayed at the #1 spot for the next weekend. The film had the second highest opening ever for an animated film. It was the highest-grossing film of 2010, both domestically and worldwide.[42][43] Toy Story 3 grossed over $1 billion, making it the seventh film in history, the second Disney film in 2010, the third Disney film overall, and the first animated film to do so.[44]

Film Release date Revenue Rank Budget Reference
North America Outside North America Worldwide All time North America All time worldwide
Toy Story November 22, 1995 $191,796,233 $170,162,503 $361,958,736 #151
#221 $30 million [9]
Toy Story 2 November 24, 1999 $245,852,179 $239,163,000 $485,015,179 #86
#127 $90 million [14]
Toy Story / Toy Story 2
(Disney Digital 3-D)
October 2, 2009 $30,702,446 $7,295,354 $37,997,800 #2,179 N/A N/A [45][46]
Toy Story 3 June 18, 2010 $415,004,880 $648,167,031 $1,063,171,911 #12
#11 $200 million [47]
Total $883355738. $1064787888. $1948143626. #15 #16 $320 million [48]
List indicator(s)
  • (A) indicates the adjusted totals based on current ticket prices (calculated by Box Office Mojo).

Critical response

According to Rotten Tomatoes, the Toy Story trilogy is the most critically acclaimed trilogy of all time.[49] The first and second films received a 100% "fresh" rating, while the third holds a 99% "fresh" rating. According to the site, no other trilogy has had all of its films so highly rated - the Before Sunset trilogy comes closest with 98%, and Dollars trilogy and The Lord of the Rings film trilogy come after with average ratings of 95% and 94% respectively, while the Toy Story trilogy has an average of an almost perfect 99.7%.

According to Metacritic, the Toy Story trilogy is tied as the most critically acclaimed trilogy of all time, it and The Lord of the Rings film trilogy each having an average rounded score of 91 out of 100. As of July 20, 2010, every film in both trilogies is placed in the Top 100 of the site's Best Reviewed Movies List, but each Toy Story film is placed beneath a film in The Lord of the Rings trilogy.[50][51]

Film Rotten Tomatoes Metacritic
Toy Story 100% (77 reviews)[2] 92 (16 reviews)[52]
Toy Story 2 100% (162 reviews)[3] 88 (34 reviews)[53]
Toy Story 3 99% (266 reviews)[4] 92 (39 reviews)[54]

Awards and nominations

Toy Story was nominated for three Academy Awards, including Best Original Screenplay, Best Original Score and Best Original Song for Randy Newman's "You've Got a Friend in Me". John Lasseter, the director of the film, also received a Special Achievement Award for "the development and inspired application of techniques that have made possible the first feature-length computer-animated film".[55] Toy Story was also the first animated film to be nominated for the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay. At the 53rd Golden Globe Awards, Toy Story earned two Golden Globe nominations - Best Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy and Best Original Song. It was also nominated for Best Special Visual Effects at the 50th British Academy Film Awards.

Toy Story 2 won a Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy and earned a single Academy Award nomination for the song "When She Loved Me" performed by Sarah McLachlan. The Academy Award for Best Animated Feature was introduced in 2001, after the first two Toy Story installments.

Toy Story 3 won two Academy Awards - Best Animated Feature and Best Original Song. It earned three other nominations, including Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Sound Editing. It was the third animated film in history to be nominated for Best Picture, after Beauty and the Beast and Up. Toy Story 3 also won the Golden Globe for Best Animated Feature Film and the award for Best Animated Film at the British Academy Film Awards.

Academy Awards

Award Film series
Toy Story[56] Toy Story 2[57] Toy Story 3[58]
Best Picture Nominated
Adapted Screenplay
Music (Original Score) Nominated
Original Song Nominated Won
Original Screenplay
Sound Editing Nominated
Animated Feature Award not yet introduced Award not yet introduced Won
Special Achievement Award Won (John Lasseter)

Cast and characters

Character Main films Spin-offs
Toy Story Toy Story 2 Toy Story 3 Buzz Lightyear of Star Command: The Adventure Begins Buzz Lightyear of Star Command
Woody Tom Hanks Jim Hanks Intro cameo
Buzz Lightyear Tim Allen Tim Allen
Javier Fernandez-Peña
(Spanish Buzz)
Tim Allen Patrick Warburton
Aliens Jeff Pidgeon
Debi Derryberry
Jeff Pidgeon Jeff Pidgeon
(Andy's Room sequence)
Patrick Warburton
Hamm John Ratzenberger Andrew Stanton
Rex Wallace Shawn Intro cameo
Slinky Dog Jim Varney Blake Clark Silent cameo
Jessie Joan Cusack
Mary Kay Bergman
Sarah McLachlan
Joan Cusack Silent cameo Intro cameo
Mr. Potato Head Don Rickles
Sarge R. Lee Ermey
Emperor Zurg (Mentioned only) Andrew Stanton Silent cameo Wayne Knight
Wheezy Joe Ranft
Robert Goulet
Silent cameo Joe Ranft Intro cameo
Bo Peep Annie Potts Silent cameo Intro cameo
Mrs. Potato Head (Mentioned only) Estelle Harris
Andy Davis John Morris John Morris
Charlie Bright
(Young Andy)
Ms. Davis Laurie Metcalf
Molly Davis Hannah Unkrich Beatrice Miller
Lenny Joe Ranft Silent cameo
Barbie Jodi Benson
Mr. Pricklepants Timothy Dalton
Buttercup Jeff Garlin
Trixie Kristen Schaal
Dolly Bonnie Hunt
Mr. Shark Jack Angel Silent cameo
Sid Phillips Erik von Detten (Mentioned only) Erik von Detten
Hannah Phillips Sarah Freeman
Ken Michael Keaton
Bonnie Anderson Emily Hahn
Peas-in-a-Pod Charlie Bright
Amber Kroner
Brianna Maiwand
Chuckles Bud Luckey
Stinky Pete Kelsey Grammer
Al McWhiggin (Mentioned only) Wayne Knight
Bookworm Richard Kind
Jack-in-the-Box Lee Unkrich
Chatter Telephone Teddy Newton
Lotso Ned Beatty
Twitch John Cygan
Sparks Jan Rabson
Chunk Jack Angel
Stretch Whoopi Goldberg
  • Note: A dark grey cell indicates the character did not appear in that medium.


Film Director Producer Executive producer Writer Composer Editor
Toy Story John Lasseter Ralph Guggenheim
Bonnie Arnold
Ed Catmull
Steve Jobs
Joss Whedon
Andrew Stanton
Joel Cohen & Alec Sokolow
John Lasseter
Pete Docter
Andrew Stanton
Joe Ranft
Randy Newman Robert Gordon
Lee Unkrich
Toy Story 2 John Lasseter
co-directed by:
Lee Unkrich
Ash Brannon
Karen Robert Jackson
Helene Plotkin
Sarah McArthur screenplay:
Andrew Stanton
Rita Hsiao
Doug Chamberlin & Chris Webb
John Lasseter
Pete Docter
Ash Brannon
Andrew Stanton
Edie Bleiman
David Ian Salter
Lee Unkrich
Toy Story 3 Lee Unkrich Darla K. Anderson John Lasseter screenplay:
Michael Arndt
John Lasseter & Andrew Stanton
Lee Unkrich
Ken Schretzmann
Toy Story 4 John Lasseter Gayln Susman TBA screenplay:
Rashida Jones
Will McCormack
John Lasseter, Andrew Stanton, Pete Docter & Lee Unkrich

Other media

Buzz Lightyear of Star Command

Buzz Lightyear of Star Command is a spin-off TV series. The series takes place in the far future. It features Buzz Lightyear (voiced by Patrick Warburton), a famous, experienced Space Ranger who takes a crew of rookies under his wing as he investigates criminal activity across the galaxy and attempts to bring down Evil Emperor Zurg once and for all. It aired on ABC from August 8, 2000 to January 13, 2001.

Buzz Lightyear of Star Command: The Adventure Begins (2000)

Buzz Lightyear of Star Command: The Adventure Begins is a spin-off animated direct-to-video film, partially based on Toy Story. The film was released on August 8, 2000. It acts as a pilot to the television series Buzz Lightyear of Star Command and features Tim Allen as the voice of Buzz Lightyear, who is voiced by Patrick Warburton in the main series.[59] In this film, Buzz Lightyear is a space ranger who fights against the evil Emperor Zurg, showing the inspiration for the Buzz Lightyear toyline that exists in the Toy Story series. Although the film was criticized for not using the same animation as in Toy Story and Toy Story 2,[60] it sold three million VHS and DVDs in its first week of release.[61]

Comic books

  • A 4-issue limited series, Toy Story: Mysterious Stranger was published by Boom! Entertainment from May to August 2009. This was followed by an 8 issue ongoing series, starting with #0 in November 2009. Two Buzz Lightyear one-shots were released in 2010, for Free Comic Book Day and Halloween. A second 4-issue limited series, Toy Story: Tales from the Toy Chest was published by Boom! Entertainment from July to October 2010.
  • A 4-issue limited series by Marvel Comics was published from May to August 2012.

Video games

Pixar created original animations for the games, including fully animated sequences for PC titles.

Woody and Buzz Lightyear were originally going to appear as summons in the Final Mix version of the Disney/Square Enix video game Kingdom Hearts II. They were omitted from the final product, but their models appear in the game's coding, without textures. The director of the Kingdom Hearts series, Tetsuya Nomura, has stated that he would like to include Pixar property in future Kingdom Hearts games, given Disney's purchase of Pixar.[64]

Merchandising and software

Toy Story had a large promotion before its release, leading to numerous tie-ins with the film including images on food packaging.[65] A variety of merchandise was released during the film's theatrical run and its initial VHS release including toys, clothing, and shoes, among other things.[66] When action figures for Buzz Lightyear and Sheriff Woody were created, they were initially ignored by retailers. However, after over 250,000 figures were sold for each character before the film's release, demand continued to expand, eventually reaching over 25 million units sold by 2007.[67] Also, Disney's Animated Storybook: Toy Story and Disney's Activity Center: Toy Story were released for Windows and Mac.[68] Disney's Animated Storybook: Toy Story was the best selling software title of 1996, selling over 500,000 copies.[69]

Theme park attractions


Toy Story's innovative computer animation had a large impact on the film industry. After the film's debut, various industries were interested in the technology used for the film. Graphics chip makers desired to compute imagery similar to the film's animation for personal computers; game developers wanted to learn how to replicate the animation for video games; and robotics researchers were interested in building artificial intelligence into their machines that compared to the lifelike characters in the film.[70] Various authors have also compared the film to an interpretation of Don Quixote as well as humanism.[71][72]

In 2013 Pixar designed a "Gromit Lightyear" sculpture based on the Aardman Animations character Gromit for Gromit Unleashed which sold for £65,000.[73]

"To infinity and beyond!"

Buzz Lightyear's classic line "To infinity and beyond!" has seen usage not only on T-shirts, but among philosophers and mathematical theorists as well.[74][75][76] Lucia Hall of The Humanist linked the film's plot to an interpretation of humanism. She compared the phrase to "All this and heaven, too!", indicating one who is happy with a life on Earth as well as having an afterlife.[72] In 2008, during STS-124, astronauts took an action figure of Buzz Lightyear into space on the Discovery Space Shuttle as part of an educational experience for students that also stressed the catchphrase. The action figure was used for experiments in zero-g.[77] Also in 2008, the phrase made international news when it was reported that a father and son had continually repeated the phrase to help them keep track of each other while treading water for 15 hours in the Atlantic Ocean.[78]


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External links

  • Official website at Disney
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