Toy Story of Terror "Behind the Scenes" and Fun Facts

Toy Story of Terror Screencap

Pixar has just released a quick “behind the scenes” look at Toy Story of Terror! with additional insights from Director, Angus MacLane, and Producer, Galyn Susman. The video is packed with additional never-before-seen snippets from the film that really play up the hilarity as well as some throwbacks to Angus’ short film, Small Fry. Who couldn’t help make the comparison to Small Fry when we saw the figure Combat Carl Junior – which completely pairs with the Buzz and mini-Buzz as featured in the short. Enjoy the video and then read some additional fun facts we compiled below.


You can’t go wrong with some behind-the-scenes facts, so we wanted to put together a few fun facts that we have found regarding the film. So, did you know that something in the film was actually not CG animation? Did you know that the film is separated into four “acts” as opposed to Pixar’s standard three “acts”? Read on to learn more.

Director, Angus MacLane recently mentioned in this Disney Insider post that, everything you’ll see on screen is indeed computer-animated with the exception of one element–a bat you see flying through a spooky graveyard was in fact a prop filmed on a green screen. “That effect of the cheesy rubber bat was amazingly achieved, brilliantly by doing it the old-fashioned way: ordering a few bats off of the internet and seeing which was the floppiest.” How would you have liked to have been on that research team to have to locate rubber bats online?!

Toy Story of Terror Combat Carl Screencap

Pixar fans will also find it interesting that Andrew Stanton helped develop the 40-page script for Toy Story of Terror!. Previously, Stanton had a hand in co-writing the previous Toy Story films as well as writing and directing other films at Pixar Animation Studios (Wall-E and Finding Nemo).

As many know, Pixar’s feature and short films can take years to create and Toy Story of Terror! is no exception as it took a team of roughly 150 Pixarians nearly two-and-a-half years to complete. What we found to be interesting from a WSJ article was how Stanton assisted in the creation of the short having four separate “acts” which will allow the film to flow better with television commercials – however, in regular feature films/shorts the story is broken down into three acts. “Nobody at Pixar knows anything about television,” said Galyn Susman, the film’s producer, “so the storytelling perspective had to be completely different.”

Toy Story 3 Bonnie

Fans of the Toy Story franchise will be interested to know that Toy Story of Terror is set just six months after Toy Story 3 (leaving Bonnie at the same age as we last her) – though we tend to think that Toy Story of Terror is set AFTER PartySaurus Rex, as Bonnie’s mom eludes to going to her Grandmother’s house in the short as Bonnie gets out of her rave-inspired the bath. What do you think? Does this literally pick up as Bonnie changes and gets out of the bath? That would be a really amazing connection if it were the case (in our eyes).

Did you know that the film had approximately 27,171 storyboards? In an interesting comparison, there were 100,856 storyboards drawn for Monsters University. And in case you wanted to get nerdy for a moment (and I do), that would mean that there were approximately 970 storyboards drawn for each minute of the final film for Monsters University (104-minute film) – whereas there were approximately 1,208 storyboards drawn for each minute of the final twenty-two-and-a-half minute film for Toy Story of Terror!. Whew, that’s a lot of sketches and digital ink flying around! I wouldn’t have imagined that there would be proportionally more storyboards for the special as there were for Monsters University, would you? Learn more about the animation process for Toy Story of Terror! in our previous post.

Toy Story of TERROR! Storyboard

Some of the new characters are:

  • Pocketeer (voiced by Ken Marino)
  • Pez Cat (voiced by Saturday Night Live’s Kate McKinnen)
  • Hotel Desk Clerk (voiced by Stephen Tobolowsky)
Toy Story of Terror Pocketeer and PEZ Cat

Additionally, we were also really excited to learn of the studio’s commitment to keep these amazing characters “alive” for future generations of kids and kids-at-heart. “We’ve got to constantly keep these characters alive and in the younger kids’ minds,” said Jim Morris, Pixar’s general manager and a member of the “brain trust,” a collective of executives and filmmakers who green light and shape each of the studio’s projects. Mr. Morris has been discussing an evergreen television special with Mr. Lasseter since he arrived at the company in 2005 and also mentioned that if Toy Story of Terror! is well received that they would be more likely to produce additional television specials – which we would absolutely love to see. It’s an amazing thing to be able to unveil a new brand new story with some of our favorite characters in our home.

Be sure to also brush up of a few more fun facts and learn about the easter eggs that will also be hidden in Toy Story of Terror! in our earlier post – there you’ll learn about more of the fun references to traditional horror films as well as what hidden items (e.g., Pizza Planet Truck) to keep an eye out for while watching tomorrow night.

Comments 4
  1. This. This is why, even though I won't be getting a \”full\” PIXAR feature next year, I can still wet my whistle with a short that is hopefully just as satisfying, hilarious and charming as a full film.It's a little ironic isn't it- that PIXAR is making a half hour Toy Story short when that's originally how the film was envisioned? Let's just hope that if TSoT does well we can finally get that \”Toy Story: Christmas Special\” one day!

  2. It is a little bit of a full circle thing with Pixar creating the TV special! Yes, Julie and I have wanted to have a Christmas special for years and that would be great! We need more classics for future generations to watch each season.

  3. No sir, this cannot be right after Bonnie dresses up from the bath and goes to Grandma's house, because Rex and all the toys can't be two places at one time 😉 Along this line, I think that timeline in the post-Toy Story 3 era is not relevant anymore. The adventures after the toys have the new owner (Bonnie) will probably not relate to each other, so it doesn't really matter what happens before or after what.

Leave a Reply

You May Also Like
%d bloggers like this: