Disney debuted a sneak peek look at Pixar’s Toy Story 4 during Super Bowl LIII, featuring the return of Woody (Tom Hanks), Buzz Lightyear (Tim Allen) and the long-lost Bo Peep (Annie Potts).
When the toys’ owner Bonnie creates new craft-project-turned-toy Forky (Tony Hale), a makeshift plaything who sees himself as “trash” instead of a toy, leader Woody takes it upon himself to convince Forky why he should embrace being a toy. But when Woody, Buzz and the gang are brought along for a road trip, the pull-string sheriff doll ends up on an unexpected detour that reunites him with old flame Bo, who was sold off in a yard sale long ago.
“Like most people, I assumed that Toy Story 3 was the end of the story,” said first-time Pixar feature director Josh Cooley in a past press statement.
“And it was the end of Woody’s story with Andy. But just like in life, every ending is a new beginning. Woody now being in a new room, with new toys, and a new kid, was something we have never seen before. The questions of what that would be like became the beginning of an entertaining story worth exploring.”
Joining the living toys on their new adventure are series newcomers Ducky (Keegan-Michael Key) and Bunny (Jordan Peele), a pair of tough-talking but fuzzy carnival prizes, and tiny hero toy Duke Kaboom (Keanu Reeves).
“The world of Toy Story is built upon the idea that everything in the world has a purpose,” Cooley said of Forky, the neurotic handmade toy who argues he doesn’t belong among Bonnie’s growing collection that now includes yodeling cowgirl Jessie (Joan Cusack) and Rex (Wallace Shawn).
“A toy’s purpose is to be there for its child. But what about toys that are made out of other objects? Forky is a toy that Bonnie made out of a disposable spork, so he’s facing a crisis. He wants to fulfill his purpose as a spork, but now has a new toy purpose thrust upon him.”
Both Hanks and Allen, who have headlined the franchise since 1995, have teased the film has an emotional and “impactful ending.”
“The way you record Toy Story, you’re in a room with the team that has created it. When I went in for my last day of recording, I wanted to have my back to them, because usually you’re facing him so he can look right up and you can talk about it. I didn’t want to see them and pretended they couldn’t see me,” Hanks said on The Chris Evans Breakfast Show of recording his final lines.
“When I realized what they were going for, I realized, ‘Oh, this is a moment in history.’”
Toy Story 4 opens June 21.