Toy Story Franchise
Toy Story is a CGI animated film series and Disney media franchise that began with the original 1995 film, Toy Story, produced byPixar and released by Walt Disney Pictures. The franchise is based on the anthropomorphic concept that all toys, unknown to humans, are secretly alive, and the films focus on a diverse group of toys.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. Lasseter will return to direct the upcoming fourth film.
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.
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, an imaginative young suburban boy, getting a new Buzz Lightyear toy, causing Sheriff Woody, a vintage cowboy figure, to think that he has been replaced as Andy’s favorite toy. Jealous, Woody tries to knock Buzz behind a table, but accidentally sends him out the window, causing the other toys to assume that he tried to murder Buzz. 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.
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 set off to attempt to free Woody, who meanwhile has discovered his origins as a historic television star. 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. 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. It turned out to be an even greater success than the original Toy Story, grossing over $485 million worldwide. The film was re-released in Disney Digital 3-D as part of a double feature, along with Toy Story, on October 2, 2009.
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. It is Pixar’s highest-grossing film of all time worldwide and domestic. 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. In August 2010, it surpassed Shrek 2, becoming the highest-grossing animated film of all time.
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