I think it's safe to say that this is one announcement no one saw coming. There had been murmurings of a fourth Toy Story on several occasions before, but most fans had taken them with a grain of salt. Millions of jaws smacked the ground hard today when Disney and Pixar confirmed that Toy Story 4 is indeed happening.
Disney CEO Bob Iger broke the news during an earnings call, and confirmed that Pixar and Disney Animation honcho John Lasseter, who helmed the first two Toy Story films, will return to direct the fourth installment in the series.
Toy Story 4 will arrive in theaters on June 17th, 2017 and will reportedly be a love story. Lasseter said this of Pixar's approach towards sequels in an interview the the LA Times:
"A lot of people in the industry view us doing sequels as being for the business of it, but for us it's pure passion. We only make sequels when we have a story that's as good as or better than the original. We don't just, because of the success of a film, automatically say we're going to do a sequel and then figure out what we're going to do."
|John Lasseter and the crew behind Toy Story 4|
In true Pixar fashion, Lasseter and studio veterans Lee Unkrich (who directed Toy Story 3), Pete Docter, and Andrew Stanton came up with the story for the film over lunch one day in his office, he told the LA Times. He and Stanton spent the past two years crafting the story and later brought in Rashida Jones and Will McCormack to pen the script, having seen their 2012 comedy Celeste and Jesse Forever. Galyn Susman, producer of last year's television special Toy Story of Terror and the upcoming Toy Story That Time Forgot, will produce the fourth full-length Toy Story film.
I leave you with a song from this year's Muppets Most Wanted which, funnily enough, predicted today's big announcement.