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Comments (10) Toy Story, Toy Story 20th, Upcoming Pixar

Toy Story’s 20th Anniversary

Toy Story turns 20 on the 22nd of this month! Can you believe it’s been 20 years already? Nia and I wanted to do something special for the occasion, and we’re asking you, our readers, to help us.

Most of us were just four or five when we saw Toy Story. We might even be the same age it is now. This movie revolutionized animation in 1995 and made Pixar a household name, after years of short films and commercials. Much more than that though, Toy Story is also meaningful for those of us who grew up with it. Andy’s toys were our toys. We went on adventures with these characters. The first film led to two more, becoming the best trilogy in recent memory, and now a fourth one is on the way. Toy Story 3 turned five back in June of this year, and that too was a meaningful film for high school graduates and college students.

It seems fitting that 2015 marks 20 years of Toy Story. Inside Out was released to widespread acclaim and love this year, and we also have The Good Dinosaur to look forward to this Thanksgiving. Much has changed about Pixar and computer animation. Toy Story is 20 years old and can stand alongside those films and feel just as new. Because of this, Toy Story represents so much more than nostalgia. It’s timeless; its characters, humor, and heart are as vibrant today as they were in 1995.

What we want you, our readers to do, is to tell us all about your Toy Story memories. Did you see it in theaters? How old were you? Do you have any of the toys? What does it mean to you now? Anything at all you’d like to share is welcome. All you have to do is leave a comment on this post with your name before 11:59 pm est on November 21st. That means you have a week. On the 22nd, we’ll put together all your contributions and share the Toy Story love and magic.

So for everyone who has ever wondered if their toys moved when they left the room, for anyone who’s loved a toy, who still watches Toy Story as enraptured as you did so many years ago, this is for you.

To infinity and beyond!

10 Responses to Toy Story’s 20th Anniversary

  1. Atta Lynne says:

    I was 8 actually. And I have a lot of clear, random memories regarding it. I went to see it in the theater with my dad and I loved it which is surprising because as a child I was deathly afraid of toys coming to life (thanks, Chucky, thanks) to the point that I had vivid and chronic nightmares, my parents had to get rid of select toys/dolls that triggered me, and more and I still wasn’t fully ‘cured’ of the fear. Until this movie. It was the movie that spun it all around for me and made me stop fearing the idea and my nightmares literally stopped.

    Another thing I remember – I love Woody more, but I for some reason I wanted a Buzz Lightyear so badly that my dad went to three or four Burger Kings to find one of the promotional plush that they had (couldn’t afford the actual replica toys that came out in the stores). I’ll always remember the night he brought it to me as a surprise. I literally squealed and Buzz and I were inseparable for months after that. Sharing that movie with him in general is also one of my best memories I have with my dad as a girl. We actually went to see it for his birthday just me and him, as his birthday is the 19th and then he surprised me by pre-ordering the VHS at Blockbuster (a big deal for an 8 year old in the 90s okay) for my birthday the following year as it came out on VHS 5 days after my 9th birthday.

    Another random thing I remember is being at school and it being all the rage and this one boy I had a crush on, but who was also semi jerky because 8 year old boys ugh, was all “I bet you haven’t even seen it” and of course I had and had to defend my fangirl honor. So he dared me to name every single toy in the movie to prove it. I had only seen it once at that point, but you better believe I had a photographic memory and he got schooled to the point he was super nice to me the rest of the year and other classmates who were in on the whole dare were in awe too.

  2. Jkop says:

    Toy Story played a very large part in my childhood. The first one I watched a ton when I was young, and once I got it the second movie became my favorite movie. Toy story 3 was also probably the biggest event of 2010 for me and I also had quite a few toys. I managed to see all 3 movies in 3D which was pretty cool as well. Toy Story was a big part of my life, and with Toy Story 4, the specials, and the shorts it may remain part of a life for a long time.

  3. Nellie says:

    Wow, it was that long ago? I was not even born yet! I only saw it in theaters when they did that double feature with the second one. This is as incredible as the Incredibles ( yeah, Pixar simile!) and I am glad I could be here for it.

  4. Susan and Kayla Gordon says:

    My daughter was 4 years old when Toy Story came to be. She had already gone through surgeries, chemo and was starting on radiation when she was mesmorized by Woody and Buzz. She has been a true and dedicated fan since then and has also gone through several bouts of chemo since then letting Woody and Buzz comfort her. She turned 24 last birthday. In fact when we booked a Disney Cruise in September, I asked DCL if there is anything that they can do for her and low and behold, she was treated with a private session with Woody and Buzz. I haven’t seen her smile that much. It brings a grin on my face as I tell this story.

  5. Josiah Mielke says:

    I was just a baby when the first Toy Story came out. But, I loved it when I first saw it on home video and I still love it today. I have all the movies (and the TV specials on Blu-Ray and DVD), I still have a lot of the toys (the main ones like Woody and Buzz I haven’t stored away yet), and I just love this trilogy! May the toys continue to embrace more kids and adults for generations to come! To infinity and beyond!

  6. Allie says:

    I could write a book about how Toy Story has impacted my life and what it means to me. I like to joke that the day Toy Story was released in theaters was the best day of my life… even though I was -4 months old. Toy Story has always been my childhood favorite movie, and it eventually became the film that convinced me to be an animator. I have very fond memories of my Toy Story toys, from playing with little Buzz and Woody figures with my older sister (I was always Buzz, she was Woody) to my dad dressing up one of my other Buzzes in Barbie clothes to act out the Mrs. Nesbitt scene. I’m now in my second year of art school, and the more I learn about the history of animation, the more I see how Toy Story has rocked the industry. Whether you’re a fan of CGI or miss 2D, you have to recognize that Toy Story was a groundbreaking marriage of technology and art and the foundation of many of the films we cherish today. The production of Toy Story itself is a story of having a dream and not giving up on it, no matter how much others try to take control of it or convince you that it’ll fail. This is what inspires me to pursue my own dream and hope to make my own films someday.

  7. Keisha says:

    I can’t remember a time where I didn’t treat my toys as if they were real (I was three years old when the original came out). I probably owned some small toys from the movie, but the one I interacted with the most was the computer game. Generally speaking, I loved playing all the storybook computer games from the ’90s Disney movies, and Toy Story was one of my top favorites.
    The films itself hold a special place in my heart, and though I don’t remember the first time I saw the original and its sequel, they both came out around pivotal moments of my life. The first one came out two months before my first sister was born (the first time I’d become a sibling), and the second one came out seven months before my second sister was born. And the third one came out at exactly the right time: I had just graduated from high school the day before its release, and Andy saying goodbye to his toys sadly reminded me that I’d have to do the same in the next two months as I was moving to another state, away from the friends I grew up with.
    Every time I watch the original Toy Story it’s like visiting an old friend, and the movie brings me back to my childhood. I may have outgrown playing with the toys I used to love, but the fond memories are still there.

  8. Noah Carolan says:

    What does Toy Story mean to me?

    It all started when I was around 11 months old. I allegedly didn’t do much, I crawled around a bit, I slept, not much else. So my parents decide to try and spark some interests by putting on movies for me. But I’d only watch one the entire way through; Toy Story.

    And so, that started a very long cycle of rematches and rewatches for years and years. But it’s had such a big influence on me. It’s what made me want to become an animator, made me want to work for Pixar, sparked my hobby in film making, heck, it’s one of the main reasons I started talking.

    I’ve been incredibly respectful to this series, and it payed off. On the 18th of July, 2010, I got a special screening of Toy Story 3 before anyone else in the UK. And I loved every minute of it.

    In fact, any time I go to the Disney parks, I always try to meet the Buzz Lightyear character. Unfortunately, DLP don’t really “get” the Toy Story hype, but luckily, I have met him twice; once in 2006 and once this year, in 2015. Even this year, the ride I went on most was Buzz Lightyear Laser Blast.

    Even as I write this in bed, I have a giant TS3 poster looming above me, and the Toy Story characters for Disney Infinity close by.

    So yeah, that’s what it means for me.

    ~ Noah Carolan 😀

  9. What does Toy Story mean to me? Well, where do I start? For starters, it was the first movie I ever fell in love with. My Toy Story experience began early, like a lot of people my age. I was 13 going on 14. Months, that is, 13 months going on 14 months. My dad came home with the VHS for Toy Story. I was hooked. Obviously, I don’t remember this, but my mom has told me that, everytime she popped Toy Story in the VCR, she knew she had about an hour and a half of free time, because I was just mesmerized. Then, Toy Story 2 came out, and I was all in. It’s the first movie I remember seeing in the theaters, and it was great. I’m pretty sure my current physique is due to constant trips to McDonald’s to try and get all of the Happy Meal toys. Even with the Toy Story franchise dormant for 11 years afterwards, I was still hooked on Toy Story. At some point, I discovered the Toy Box Collection version of Toy Story and Toy Story 2, which feature a third disc that was nothing but behind-the-scenes and bonus features, which just helped fuel my interest in both films. Then, Toy Story 3 came out. It’s the first movie I really remember getting emotional at, and when I watch it today, I still cry like a little girl. Even with my general displeasure at the idea of Toy Story 4, I still love the Toy Story franchise. I mean, the big gift I got Christmas 2013 was a Buzz Lightyear toy, a Woody doll, and a Jessie doll, which were the gifts that me and my sisters played with the most that Christmas. Just a few weeks ago, I decided to sit down and watch all three in a row, and I’d really forgotten just how amazing all those movies are. I still laughed at the jokes, even though I know them by heart and use them in my everyday life. I still cried at the end of Toy Story 3, even though I knew what was coming. I referred to it as “catching up with old friends” on an Instagram post I made, and that’s really what I think about the films and characters as. They really are my oldest and closest friends, and, without them, I wouldn’t be the person I am today. So, thank you everyone who has worked on any of these films, for crafting something that people from 1 to 99 can watch and still laugh at and cry at and connect with in a way not many other films can. Thank you Toy Story, and may you continue to inspire people for infinity and beyond.

  10. buzzfan120 says:

    I’ve been a hardcore Pixar fangirl ever since I was little. I wasn’t like most Disney-loving girls my age (i.e. I favored Buzz Lightyear over Disney Princesses). I mean, I don’t call myself buzzfan120 for nothing. Buzz-zinga!

    Every time I watched a Pixar movie (usually Toy Story, Toy Story 2 or Monsters, Inc.) I was enchanted. And all three times we went to Disney World, I went Pixar crazy. I loved riding Buzz’s Space Ranger Spin, playing Toy Story Mania, dancing in Block Party Bash, and meeting the Pixar Pals.

    When Toy Story 3 came out I got REALLY excited. I was one of those people who wait till the movie comes out on DVD to se it, but it was worth waiting for. I was enchanted with Buzz in his Spanish mode, and oh, the best part was Buzz and Jessie’s big dance number. It was like they saved the best part for last. It was Spanish Buzz that got me into flamenco. Besides, I always thought Buzz and Jessie made a cute couple. (wink wink nudge nudge) 😉

    That very same year when we got back from Disney World (I think), we were at my grandma’s and we were channel-surfing when we came across Disney Channel. Much to my surprise and delight, they were showing the Buzz Lightyear of Star Command movie. Not Pixar per se, but still AWESOME!

    Now it’s been 20 years since my favorite dynamic duo of Pixar Pals soared onto the big screen. And to this day Buzz is still my fave character, and I’ve still got Disney magic in my heart. All three Toy Story movies bring back lots of good memories. Thank you Disney and Pixar.

    To infinity and beyond!

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