Early scripts for the film featured a Barbie doll in a prominent role as Woody's love interest. The original ending sequence, in which Buzz and Woody chase the moving truck, was scripted to have Barbie drive her Corvette off the truck and rescue Woody and Buzz from Sid's dog, a-la Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton) in Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991). Mattel, the company that owns the Barbie character, declined on the basis that they thought the film would be a failure and that they didn't want Barbie to have a defined personality, preferring to let children imagine Barbie's personality traits on their own. Thus, Barbie was dropped from the script, and her character was reworked into that of Bo-Peep. When the film proved a huge success, Mattel did allow Barbie to appear in Toy Story 2 (1999).
Billy Crystal was originally offered the chance to voice Buzz Lightyear, but declined. After seeing the finished film, he said the decision was the biggest mistake of his career. Upon learning this, John Lasseter telephoned Billy's house to offer him the role of Mike Wazowski in Monsters, Inc. (2001). Billy's wife answered the telephone and said "John Lasseter wants to speak to you." Billy took the telephone from his wife and said "Yes".
What attracted Tom Hanks to the role of Woody was the fact that, during his childhood, he would always wonder if his toys were alive and moved around when nobody was in his room. What attracted Tim Allen to the role of Buzz Lightyear was the fact that, before him, they offered the role to his biggest influence in his career, Chevy Chase, who turned it down. Billy Crystal had also declined the role.
Hasbro denied Pixar the use of the name G.I. Joe when it was informed that a G.I. Joe doll was going to be blown up by Sid. The doomed action figure was thus referred to as a "Combat Carl". Combat Carl would later become a speaking character in Toy Story of Terror (2013).
Some 3D effects were too complex, or even impossible, to calculate at the time of this film; subtle tricks are used to avoid them. Examples: explosions, thus the viewer doesn't see Combat Carl's demise; hair dynamics, so Andy, Sid, and Molly all have short hair while Andy's mother's hair is always tied back in a simple-to-model pony tail; and flying water droplets, thus the viewer doesn't see any liquid when Woody dumps his burning head into a bowl of cereal.
Woody and Buzz Lightyear are inspired by John Lasseter's own childhood toys. He based Woody on his own pull-string Casper doll, and once he grew out of Casper, he moved on to a G.I. Joe, a flashy toy at the time of his childhood.
Tim Allen has said in many interviews that Pixar originally wanted Jim Carrey to voice Buzz Lightyear, and Paul Newman to voice Woody, but they couldn't due to the low budget they were given for the film. Those casting choices were meant to represent how new Hollywood was taking over old Hollywood - Newman representing old Hollywood, Carrey representing new Hollywood. Newman would later go on to voiced Doc Hudson in Cars (2006) which was his last role before passing away in 2008.
John Lasseter always wanted Tom Hanks to play the character of Woody. Lasseter claimed Hanks had "the ability to take emotions and make them appealing. Even if the character is down-and-out and despicable." Early test footage, using Hanks' voice from Turner & Hooch (1989), convinced Hanks to sign on to the film.
When Sarge looks through his binoculars spying on the party guests when he and the other army men investigate the birthday party, you'll notice that Andy's friends are actually the same character model of Andy just with different skin tones and different clothes and accessories.
Originally the main character was going to be Tinny, the title character in John Lasseter's Oscar winning short film Tin Toy (1988). The story would have involved Tinny being left behind at a highway rest stop and joining up with a sarcastic ventriloquist dummy to try and get back to his family but they eventually make it to a preschool. However, the writers soon realized that Tinny was too old-fashioned to be a child's favorite toy. So he was replaced with a miniature toy astronaut initially named Lunar Larry and later Tempus from Morph. Eventually he became taller and was renamed Buzz Lightyear. The ventriloquist dummy, meanwhile, also changed and evolved; becoming less mean spirited and eventually turning into a cowboy rag doll named Woody.
The first (and as of 2014 the only) animated film to receive a special achievement Academy Award. It was given to John Lasseter for "the development and inspired application of techniques that have made possible the first feature-length computer-animated film." More than fifty years earlier, Walt Disney received an honorary Oscar for Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937).
When the Pizza Planet delivery boy enters the Dinoco gas station, he asks for directions to West Cutting Boulevard. West Cutting Boulevard is the street where Pixar Animation Studios was located in Richmond, California at the time (Pixar moved its entire operation to Emeryville, California, in 2000).
Andy's last name is Davis. Although this is never stated in the film, during the end credits, Laurie Metcalf (who voices Andy's mom) is credited as voicing "Mrs. Davis". (Andy's last name is also revealed in Toy Story 3 (2010).)
The filmmakers have indicated in interviews that the moving-van chase scene at the end of the film was partially inspired by the toy train chase scene from The Wrong Trousers (1993). The Pixar animators considered the toy train sequence to have set a standard for action which they had to surpass in this full-length computer animated film.
When the film was re-released on DVD, it was found that almost twenty percent of the original animation files were corrupted, proving to the studio that digital storage was not as feasible as they thought it would be at the time the film was made.
Jeffrey Katzenberg often gave notes that he wanted more edge. Pixar presented an early draft of the film to Disney on November 19, 1993. The result was disastrous. The film was deemed unwatchable and John Lasseter recalls simply hanging his head in shame. It presented Woody as a "sarcastic jerk" who was constantly insulting the other toys. Katzenberg took Walt Disney Feature Animation president Peter Schneider in the hall after the screening and asked him why it was bad, Schneider responded that it "wasn't theirs anymore." Disney immediately shut down production pending a new script. The story team spent a week on a new script to make Woody a more likable character, instead of the "sarcastic jerk" he had been.
In Andy's bedroom, you'll notice that there are books on the book shelf with the following titles: Tin Toy (1988), Knick Knack (1989), Red's Dream (1987), and Luxo Jr. (1986). These titles are the names of the animated short films that Pixar made in the 1980s.
The toy shark, wearing Woody's hat, proclaims, "Look, I'm Woody! Howdy howdy howdy!" This references a cowboy-eating vulture in one of Gary Larson's "The Far Side" daily comic strips, from the early 1980s: "Hey everyone, look at me, I'm a cowboy! Howdy! Howdy! Howdy!"
Hamm's voice actor John Ratzenberger later would go on to voice a character in every Pixar film since, becoming Pixar's "good luck charm," with Pixar being the only animation studio to have a voice actor in every movie of theirs.
The top of Sid's backpack reads "Julie Macbarfle has cooties!", a reference to camera manager Julie M. McDonald, who lobbied people to put her name in the film. "Juju's house of food" is another reference to her.
During the "Mrs. Nesbit" scene, Buzz was with two headless dolls. He says, "One minute you're defending the whole galaxy, and suddenly, you see yourself Darjeeling with, Marie-Antoinette and her little sister." Marie-Antoinette was queen of France during 1774-1792. She was guillotined on 1793 in the French Revoultion with her sister-in-law Élisabeth.
Buzz Lightyear's colors are purple, green and white. This was because John Lasseter's favorite color is green, his wife's favorite color is purple and the character was based on the white suits astronauts used to wear in the Apollo missions.
Buzz Lightyear's facial features are loosely based on those of the film's John Lasseter; most notably his eyebrows, cheekbones and the dimple in his chin. Lasseter demonstrated this by sketching a rough self-portrait on the U.K. breakfast show The Big Breakfast (1992), and then adding the spacesuit helmet to transform himself into Buzz.
The presence of Bo Peep in Toy Story (1995) is a reference to the fairy tale "The Shepherdess and The Sweep" (1849) by Danish author Hans Christian Andersen. His story was also about toys in a children's room coming to life when no one is looking.
When the soldiers are watching the pile of presents disappear during the birthday party, two silhouette pictures can be seen on the wall. These pictures are available at Walt Disney parks worldwide, and are cut freehand, with no prior sketchwork, using nothing but paper and scissors by the park's employees.
Initially Steve Jobs had real reservations about the film, to the point where he was considering selling off Pixar. However, as production was underway, he got more and more excited about the way it was shaping up, firmly believing that it would be a milestone in motion picture history.
This is the only film in the Toy Story trilogy to start in the real world, unlike Toy Story 2 (1999) which started off in a video game setting, and Toy Story 3 (2010), which started in a fantasy setting of Andy's playtime.
Disney pushed hard for the film to be a musical (like most animated features of the time) but John Lasseter was against the idea. He felt the film would work better as a buddy comedy, rather than a musical. Eventually he and Disney reached a compromise in that songs would play at key moments but not be sung by the characters. Pixar wouldn't make a musical until Coco (2017), 22 years later.
The carpet in Sid's house is modeled after the carpet in the Overlook Hotel in The Shining (1980). The Shining is editor Lee Unkrich's favorite movie. When Buzz gets wacky at the "tea party" he calls himself Mrs. Nesbit. The name of one of Pete's grade school teachers and in college, he had a Toyota pickup truck pretty much like the one the pizza delivery guys used. It too had a "YO" on the gate.
During the staff meeting one of the books on Andy's bookshelf behind Woody is titled "Smyrl, Smryl, Twist and Twirl," a reference to Eliot Smyrl on the modeling team. Another is titled "Scooter Run". This is a reference to what filmmakers would do when Pixar consisted of no more than six people. Many of the books are names of Pixar's short films (André and Wally B. (1984), Knick Knack (1989), Tin Toy (1988) etc.) and some of the book authors are named after Pixar staff.
EASTER EGG: The license plate on Andy's mother's car reads "A113". A113 is a room used by the animation department at CalArts - alma mater of a large number of Pixarians, including John Lasseter. This Easter Egg would later carry on over to Future Pixar Films as well.
In April 2008, Toy Story (1995) made its debut as a live action musical on Disney Cruise Line's The Disney Wonder. The musical contains seven songs, six of which are original, and Randy Newman's 'You've Got a Friend in Me.'
Andy's lamp is a red version of the lamp that first appeared in and the ball that bounces down the hall just before the party, up and down from the hand of a guest, then is bounced off of by Buzz is the ball that first appeared in Luxo Jr. (1986). Both have since become Pixar trademarks.
When Woody and Buzz are running around behind the video game consoles at Pizza Planet, one of the video games that can be seen is an extremely sped up version of Pong, a video game by Atari that was originally released in November 1972.
The theme of Andy favoring Buzz (a spaceman) over Woody (a cowboy) is reminiscent of a cultural phenomenon of the 1950s where kids wanted to be cowboys. With the launch of Sputnik and the subsequent space race between the United States and the Soviet Union, more kids wanted to grow up to be astronauts and abandoned their cowboy toys. This phenomenon is literally addressed in the sequel, Toy Story 2 (1999).
Even though she belongs to Molly, Bo Peep has been considered to be one of Andy's toys - being played with by Andy and even being labeled as "Andy's Toys" on a bonus feature on the 2005 Toy Story 1 and 2 DVDs.
In the Black Friday reel, Hamm was depicted as being a bipedal pig (presumably a plush toy) instead of a piggy bank. In addition, he also was given a voice that was more pig-like, similar to Porky Pig, albeit slightly deeper.
The Jim Henson Company produced the Muppet's television movie The Christmas Toy (1986), about toys who come to life when their human owners aren't around. In it, Rugby the Tiger becomes jealous when he discovers he's about to be replaced as the children's favorite toy, and inadvertently releases the new toy, Meteora: Queen of the Asteroids, who doesn't realize she's a toy, and thinks she's landed among aliens. It's then up to Rugby and the other toys to convince her to accept her role as Christmas toy and get back in her present before Christmas morning. The Jim Henson Company was later bought by Disney, like Pixar, who created Toy Story (1995).
The early audience test screening of the movie was disguised as an early screening of "Operation Dumbo Drop" as to disguise the screening from the public. Audience members were only told the screening was actually for Toy Story when they were handed NDAs in line at the theater.
Coincidentally, there's a movie based on the Troll dolls in 2016 made by Dreamworks, Pixar's rival company. This makes the Troll dolls the only characters that appears in a Pixar production and Dreamworks production as character.
Even though they technically aren't mutant toys, Hannah's Janie doll and the Pterodactyl toy were temporarily "mutated" when Sid replaced Janie's head with the Pterodactyl's in an attempt to "make her better". Both parts were separated seconds after and put back to their original places by the other mutant toys later (around the time before they fixed Buzz).
Toward the end of the film, when Scud is chasing Buzz and RC, when Buzz gets away from Scud, a blue car nearly crashes into Scud. And, you will only be able to see this if it's in HD and you press pause. The blue car's license plate says "RES1536". This is also the license plate for the famous Pizza Planet truck.
Originally, Slinky Dog was intended to be one of Andy's more unpopular toys and the least played with, with Woody effectively being the only reason Slinky was not hauled off to goodwill, with Woody pointing this out when demanding that Slinky force the other toys off the bed after throwing Buzz out of the window. This backstory, however, was cut out after the scene in question nearly resulted in Toy Story being shut down on Black Friday
John Lasseter reflected on the impact on the movie, saying: "Yes, we worry about what the critics say. Yes, we worry about what the opening box office is going to be. Yes, we worry about what the final box office is going to be. But really, the whole point why we do what we do is to entertain our audiences. The greatest joy I get as a filmmaker is to slip into an audience for one of our movies anonymously, and watch people watch our film. Because people are 100 percent honest when they're watching a movie. And to see the joy on people's faces, to see people really get into our films...to me is the greatest reward I could possibly get".
First Disney film to have a variant of the Walt Disney Pictures logo, in this case, being a more 3D-looking castle that zooms out, which would also be used for all Pixar films until after Ratatouille (2007).
This is the only Pixar film to not have the Pixar logo, where Luxo, Jr. would bounce on the I, with the Disney logo fading into the film at the start. However, in one of the trailers for the film, a different Pixar logo is shown on a black background, with no lamp.
Before the film was released, there was an Australian television series about toys in a boy's bedroom that come alive when the boy has left the room - that series was Johnson & Friends (1990), which had no human characters.
When Andy's family is in the minivan on the way to their new house, a shot is shown of Molly looking in the side mirror at Woody and Buzz on the road. While this is happening, "Hakuna Matata" is playing, a song from The Lion King (1994).
Sid's dog is named "Scud", a reference to missiles that carried biological warfare substances used by Saddam Hussein when he opened an attack on United States allies during the Persian Gulf War of 1991.
Rendered for an aspect ratio of 1.66:1, and it was supposed to be matted in theatres to 1.85:1 (the aspect ratio for which the team tried to compose). For reasons too complex to go into here, they aimed for 1.85:1 and missed, but only by a little. After careful consideration and consultation with John Lasseter, they nudged the window open a tiny bit to 1.78:1 (16 x 9).
The design that Pixar used for Mr. Potato Head is an altered version of the 1980s and 90s design. For instance, in the real world, the toy Mr. Potato Head's eyes are attached to each other with only one hole on the plastic potato to put them in. In the Toy Story films, Mr. Potato Head's eyes are separate and have one hole for each eye on the plastic body to place them in (this is true for the shoes as well). That's why the Toy Story Collection version has connected eyes, in which the eye connection is a "half inaccuracy." The collectors were not pleased. However, we may see more accurate versions in the near future, as Hasbro announced that they may make revisions to their design.
Though not the main character, Mr. Potato Head, not counting the wanted poster, is famously the first character to appear in both the Toy Story series and the Pixar films. Andy is the first character to be heard speaking in the Pixar films as he was throwing his voice for Mr. Potato Head as a villain.
In 1996, a Toy Story-inspired See 'n Say was released. This version was the same 1989 model seen in the film, however, it was adapted to narrate scenes from the movie by Woody. In addition, the arrow now features Woody's picture.
In the tea party scene Tim Allen as Buzz Lightyear says, "One minute you're defending the whole galaxy..." and, "I am Mrs. Nesbit." Four years later he would star in Galaxy Quest (1999) as Commander Nesmith.
This is technically the only film in which Woody serves as the secondary antagonist other than Mr Potato Head as he becomes jealous of Buzz and acts cold towards him but redeems himself by befriending and saving Buzz.
The movies do not explicitly state the years in which they take place, which makes the Toy Story film timeline inexact. However, references within the films can date the first movie as taking place in 1995. This means that Andy, who is turning six in the first film, was born in 1989. Woody and Andy were friends from an early age, so Woody and Andy could have first met when Andy was a baby. Even then, however, Woody is a lot older than Andy. In Toy Story 2, Woody learns that he is a collectible toy based on the 1950s television show Woody's Roundup. Along with Jessie the Cowgirl, Bullseye the Horse, and Stinky Pete the Prospector, Woody is part of a limited edition set of toys that are rare enough to be sold to a Japanese museum. The black-and-white aesthetic always suggested the 50s, and this is confirmed in Toy Story 4 by Gabby Gabby. As a result, Woody would have lived thirty to forty years of his life before meeting Andy. When Al tries to buy Woody at the yard sale in Toy Story 2, Andy's mother apologizes and takes Woody back, saying that he is "an old family toy." Andy is only around eight years old in Toy Story 2, and as his mother identifies Woody as a family toy, rather than her son's toy, that seems to signal that Woody has been in the family's possession longer than Andy has been alive. In Toy Story 2, Woody remarks, "A record player! I haven't seen one of these in ages." It's unlikely that Andy would have had a record player in the 1990s, so this would indicate that Woody does have memories of his life before. It's likely that Woody was owned by one of Andy's parents when they were children. Some fan theories go deep into Andy's missing father, and hinge on the idea that Woody once belonged to him; because Andy associates Woody with his father, he is all the more attached to the toy.
Pixar's only film to not be accompanied by a short film until Toy Story 4 (2019) released 24 years later, although it is Pixar's only film like this before Walt Disney Pictures purchased/acquired the studio in 2006.
Joe Ranft who voiced Lenny in this film would later voice Wheezy in Toy Story 2 (1999) and many numerous characters with large roles in Pixar films until his unexpected death in 2005 (except for Monsters Inc (2001) and The Incredibles (2004) where Joe was simply listed under additional voices).
Joss Whedon, who is one of the screenwriters, would later go on to create a science fiction television series which was a "Western in space", entitled Firefly (2002). Woody is a cowboy doll and Buzz Lightyear is a toy spaceman.
When Woody hides in a milk crate in Sid's room, one of the items inside it is an American military-style manual labeled "TM 31-210: Improvised Interrogation Techniques", a reference to Sid's mock interrogation of Woody with a magnifying glass. There is a real training manual published by the United States Army with a serial number TM 31-210, which details the creation and use of improvised explosives. Though also fitting for Sid's character, it was possibly altered to its current state to prevent viewers from getting any unseemly ideas.
When Woody is trapped under a milk crate in Sid's room with Buzz, behind him can be seen a military field manual. The manual is incorrectly titled "Improvised Interrogation Handbook" with a code of TM-31-210 which is actually the military's "Improvised Munitions Handbook". Improvised munitions seems more likely the fit considering Sid's fascination with explosives.
Buzz' call of "To infinity and beyond!" is a nod to the film 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968). In 2001, once the spaceship Discovery reaches its destination, the title appears: "Jupiter and beyond infinity."
In order to accurately portray the movement of the green army men, various members of the Pixar team took turns hobbling up and down the office with their shoes nailed to a board. They got paid for doing so.
When Woody meets Buzz, Buzz aims his laser at Woody's head, which the red dot goes on his forehead. It is a foreshadowing of Woody being tortured with a magnifying glass which a hot beam of sunlight burns Woody's forehead.
There are two slightly different versions of the film's poster (where Buzz is flying in Andy's room with Woody grabbing his arm). One has Woody side-looking Buzz and the other one is Woody smiling at the sky.
Near the end of the movie, when Woody climbs onto the back of the car, not only does the famous A113 appear on the license plate, but also above A113, it says "Nov" on the left side, and "95" on the right side. which is a reference to the year 1995, in which Toy Story was released.
The first computer-animated film to be passed PG by the BBFC (British Board of Film Classification) when three years later, DreamWorks debut film Antz (1998), the first computer-animated film to be passed PG by the MPAA (Motion Picture Association of America) and the BBFC passed both films with the exact same certificate but the MPAA passed Toy Story (1995) G.
Mr. Mike was based on a real toy manufactured by Playskool sometime during the late 1980s and early 1990s, known as "Playskool Rockin' Robot." A real-life Mr. Mike was made in response to his appearance in Toy Story.
Mr. Shark's line, "Look, I'm Woody! Howdy! Howdy! Howdy!" is a reference to a cowboy-eating vulture in one of Gary Larson's The Far Side daily comic strips from the early 1980s: "Hey, everyone, look at me, I'm a cowboy! Howdy! Howdy! Howdy!"
Several months before release there were secret screenings held to tweak the film as it was being worked on. Audiences were told they were going to see a screening of Operation Dumbo Drop, and only when they were in the theater were they told it was actually an experimental animated film called Toy Story.
Laurie Metcalf and Annie Potts star in two different shows that take place in the same universe. Metcalf has as recurring role as Mary Cooper on "The Big Bang Theory" while Potts has a main role as Constance "Meemaw" Tucker on the spinoff show, "Young Sheldon". Potts plays the mother of Metcalf's character but at different times. Laurie Metcalf's real life daughter, Zoe Perry, plays a younger version of Mary Cooper on "Young Sheldon".
The moving company, which is called Eggman Movers, shares it name with the main antagonist of the Sonic The Hedgehog video game series, Dr. Eggman. However, in 1995, Dr. Eggman was still known as Dr. Robotnik to the PAL Regions (Europe and Australia) and America.
Here's a double easter egg. So, when Buzz hops onto RC and goes out from under the red car, the car's license plate says "HTT1195". Now, I'm not sure what HTT means but 1195 was on the A113 box in A Bug's Life (1998). And, it's a reference to Toy Story (1995) itself. Because Toy Story (1995) was released in November 1995.
Toy Story on ice. Buzz Lightyear's flying scene. Buzz swings from a giant baseball to a trampoline, and then he bounces over a stack of alphabet blocks and gets a ride on a toy airplane. He then jumps onto a firetruck ladder and climbs onto Andy's bed.
Originally when Woody reveals himself to scare off Sid, Buzz would have wondered if doing so would mentally scar Sid for the rest of his life. Woody would have then casually stated that he would be fine in a comedic way, but for unknown reasons this scene was cut.
There are no visible liquids, fiery explosions or long hair in the movie due to limitations in computer animation at the time. The only exception is the exhaust from the rocket that's used near the end of the film.
This is the only film in the Toy Story franchise where the main villain is not a toy (in the cases of Toy Story 2 (1999) where it's Stinky Pete The Prospector, in Toy Story 3 (2010) where it's Lots-O-Huggin' Bear "Lotso", and in Toy Story 4 (2019) where it's Gabby Gabby), but a human.
Throughout the movie it is hinted that Mr. Potato Head is and has always been jealous of Woody. In the staff meeting scene, Mr. Potato Head mentions that Woody has been Andy's favorite toy since Kindergarten. When Woody and toys meet Buzz Lightyear, Mr. Potato Head insults Woody by saying that his pull string sound box sounds as if a "car ran over it". Mr. Potato Head mocks Woody by suggesting that Andy will find a special place for Andy in the attic. When Buzz accidentally gets knocked out of the window, Mr. Potato Head confronts Woody accusing of him pushing Buzz out of the window and asks Woody if he will also push him out of the window when Andy starts playing with him more and threatens to hang him. When the toys wrongly assume Woody ripped off Buzz's arm, Mr. Potato Head hopes that Sid will pull out his sound box and Mr. Potato Head has the toys throw Woody off the moving truck when Woody tosses RC out of the moving van to rescue Buzz, thinking Woody is doing the same thing to RC like he did to Buzz.
Studio Trademark - (Self Improvement) Pixar's films have a recurring motif of self improvement. in this film, Woody who was Andy's favorite is jealous of Buzz Lightyear becoming Andy's favorite, however at the end he doesn't mind not being Andy's favorite.
In Buzz's first scene, Rex asks Buzz what a space ranger actually does, but Buzz doesn't answer the question, because he is rudely interrupted by Woody who rants about him not being a space ranger. A space ranger is an intergalactic policeman.