The Toy Story Toons have been a smart way to reunite with the the Toy Story characters without resorting to a feature-length sequel. They also give some smaller characters a chance to be in the spotlight; just as Rex took center stage in Partysaurus Rex, the upcoming Toy Story of Terror half-hour special will hone in on cowgirl Jessie, according to TV Guide.
"We’ve gotten to see a lot of development in Woody and in Buzz and we felt it was Jesse’s turn to really show some growth," producer Galyn Susman says. But that doesn’t mean other characters will get shafted; in fact, we’ll finally get to know Combat Carl (now voiced by Carl Weathers), the soldier toy who faced Sid’s wrath early on in the first Toy Story.
We previously learned that the 30-minute short will focus on a family road trip gone terrifyingly awry. Director Angus MacLane, who previously helmed Pixar shorts Small Fry and BURN-E, expanded on what that entails:
"There was some support to make a scary, but not necessarily Halloween-themed half-hour Toy Story special for television. There was some concern early on about not making it too scary for kids. I think we’ve done a good job of balancing staying true to Toy Story and staying true to the genre. As far as adults are concerned, I’ve always thought that we make these movies for ourselves. I think it’s funny and like the other Toy Story films, I think there is plenty of stuff in there that only adults will get." MacLane also mentions that the short will explore a road trip family dynamic among the characters — including Bonnie’s toys, who were introduced in the third film.
Sounds like a lot to pack into 30 minutes, but any return to the world of Toy Story is worth getting excited about. Pixar’s first full-fledged TV special will air this October on ABC.