Director: John Lasseter
Stars: Tom Hanks, Tim Allen, Don Rickles
Plot: A cowboy doll is profoundly threatened and jealous when a new spaceman figure supplants him as top toy in a boy's room.
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.
This was the first animated film in Oscar history to be nominated for a Best Screenplay Academy Award - Adapted or Original.
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).
When Woody is sitting on the bed talking with Slinky, there is a drawing of him on the wall behind them. This is actually an early sketch of the Woody character.
The carpet in Sid's house has the same hexagonal pattern as the carpet in the Overlook Hotel from The Shining (1980).
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.
Buzz Lightyear's name was inspired by Buzz Aldrin, the second man to walk on the moon, and the term light-year, which means the amount of distance a beam of light travels in one year.
HIDDEN MICKEY: The painted clouds on Andy's wall that begin the film feature a cloud comprising of Mickey's two distinct circle ear and large circle head below them.
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.
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.
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.