Pixar’s “Toy Story” has become one of the most memorable and iconic children’s movie since its release on Nov. 22, 1995. It’s hard to believe that it’s been 20 years since the original film, featuring the beloved characters Woody (Tom Hanks) and Buzz Lightyear (Tim Allen), hit theaters.
To celebrate the movie’s anniversary and ABC's 20th anniversary special, International Business Times dug up some fun and surprising facts about the film, its characters and the original plot for “Toy Story.” Check them out below:
1. Everyone knows that Tim Allen is the voice of Buzz Lightyear, but comedian and actor Jim Carrey was one of several people considered for the role. Billy Crystal was originally offered the part of Buzz, but he declined. Crystal later said in an interview that it was the biggest mistake of his career.
2. In the film’s first test, Buzz Lightyear was originally called Tempus From Morph. It was later changed to Lunar Larry and then Buzz Lightyear.
3. Buzz Lightyear was named after Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin. The character’s space suit was originally red but was changed to white, lime green and purple after the film’s director John Lasseter decided to model the costume after real space suits. He chose lime green because that’s his favorite color, and he added purple because his wife likes that color.
4. “Toy Story” wasn’t the original name for the film. During production, the crew used the working title “Toy Story” -- which they decided to keep -- but other titles for the film included “Toy,” “You Are A Toy,” “The Cowboy and the Spaceman,” “I’m With Stupid” and “Did Not, Did Too.”
5. “Toy Story” started off as a sequel to Lasseter’s 1988 short “Tin Toy.” The short was about a toy named Tinny who reluctantly let a baby play with him so he would stop crying. In the 90s, Disney approached Lasseter about creating a Christmas special follow-up to “Tin Toy.” The sequel was originally going to only be six minutes long, but Lasseter asked for 30 minutes. Peter Schneider, former President of Walt Disney Studios, green-lit a full-length feature instead.
6. In the beginning stages of “Toy Story,” the main character was going to be Tinny and the original plot was going to center on the toy getting lost during a family trip and linking up with a sarcastic ventriloquist dummy, named Woody, who was going to help him get home.
7. Lasseter said in an interview that he wanted to make a toy-driven movie because he’s always been fond of toys and loves giving life to inanimate objects. “I think there’s a lot of charm to it,” he said. “And one of the important things is we tried to show people things they’re very familiar with but show it to him in ways we’ve never seen before.”
8. In all three “Toy Story” movies the number 95 is sprinkled throughout several scenes. The number is a reference to 1995, when the first film was released.
9. Pixar camera artist Craig L. Good said there were a lot of brands that initially turned down the film’s request to feature their toys. That meant production had to create new toys like Combat Carl, which was a version of G.I. Joe. Mattel also denied the film the use of Barbie, but eventually the company allowed the doll to appear in “Toy Story 2.”
10. Andy (John Morris) is named after film director Andrew Stanton. Lasseter said in an interview that it was because Andrew and Andy had similar hairstyles at the time.
11. John Morris was only 7 years old when he landed the part of Andy. Morris is now 31. During an interview last year the actor admitted he didn’t really know what was going on during the audition, but thinks he landed the role because he was so engrossed with playing with his toys and could relate to the main human character.
12. Sid (Erik von Detten), Andy’s evil neighbor, is rumored to be inspired after a former Pixar employee who liked to take apart toys and rebuild them into weird creations. During production, Sid was often nicknamed “Little Jack Nicholson,” in reference to the actor’s movie “The Shining.”
13. Tom Hanks admitted in an interview on the “Graham Norton Show” that his brother Jim Hanks voices Woody in video games for the toy doll sold. Many people can’t tell the difference because they sound so much alike.
14. Woody was originally a spooky-looking ventriloquist doll and was mean to the other toys. Disney felt a ventriloquist would be too scary for kids, so Lasseter changed him to a pull-string toy. He also gave Woody a different, much nicer personality.
To celebrate the film's 1995 release, ABC will air "Toy Story at 20: To Infinity and Beyond" TV special on Dec. 10 at 8 p.m. EST. The special will include interviews with the cast and crew as well as tease the upcoming "Toy Story 4," expected to be released June 2018. A showing of the original "Toy Story" will air on ABC immediately after the special.