Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Will There Be A Toy Story 5?

Despite animation house Pixar's virtually unblemished record of excellence, fans were a bit surprised when Toy Story 4 proved to be a worthy continuation of the tale told by the first three films, which many consider to be among the finest cinematic trilogies ever made in any genre. Its critical and financial success has inevitably raised a question in the minds of fans: will there be a Toy Story 5?

Well, the creative minds at Pixar haven't let us know one way or the other, but there are some telltale signs that we can examine to reach a possible conclusion — and since we here at Looper have a fondness for engaging in wanton speculation, we're going to be doing some of that now. Before reading any further, however, please be advised that minor spoilers for Toy Story 4 will follow.

First, consider that if you had asked any Hollywood executive a few years ago, they likely would have told you that Toy Story 4 was not only unlikely to happen, but that it probably shouldn't happen. There's certainly plenty of room in the marketplace for belated sequels to beloved properties, a fact plainly illustrated by Toy Story 3, which is by practically any measure a masterpiece — and which hit screens a full eleven years after the previous installment. But that film put a lovely, heartstring-tugging bow on the entire series, and there's something to be said for not tinkering with perfection, even when box office success is pretty much guaranteed.

The very idea of Toy Story 4 was met with skepticism by many Pixar die-hards, who rightly wondered leading up to the film's release if the venerable studio had finally reached the cash-grabbing stage of its existence. This skepticism was only compounded by the film's numerous stumbling blocks during production, including the departure of Pixar chief John Lasseter over numerous allegations of sexual impropriety and the departure of the original screenwriters, which necessitated a complete reworking of the script.

But then, a wonderful and (for some reason) unexpected thing happened: Toy Story 4 turned out to be a triumph, smaller in scale yet just as sweet and funny as any film in the series. Immediately, the conversation was turned on its head; if Pixar can keep making them this good, why shouldn't the series continue with Toy Story 5

The fourth film certainly does nothing to shut the door on the idea — in fact, it leaves it cracked pretty wide. Unlike Toy Story 3, the movie left a narrative thread or two dangling, not the least of which involves the fate of Woody (Tom Hanks). At the conclusion of Toy Story 4, he joined his long-lost love Bo Peep among the lost toys at the carnival that comprises much of the flick's setting. He parted ways with his longtime friend Buzz Lightyear (Tim Allen) and the rest of the gang that has always looked to him to serve as a sort of compass, and was looking into an uncertain future — which doesn't seem like quite the right place to end the character's onscreen journey.

Of course, Toy Story 5 could involve a reunion between Woody and his makeshift family, perhaps even employing it as the crux of its story — and it could also give us more of the memorable new characters we were introduced to in Toy Story 4. Characters like Forky (Tony Hale), Gabby Gabby (Christina Hendricks), and Duke Caboom (Keanu Reeves) seem destined to tickle us for more than just one go-round, and simply popping up for appearances in one or two of Pixar's celebrated shorts could be seen as giving them short shrift. 

In fact, it's easy to see how a continuation of the series, involving characters both old and new, could happen even absent Toy Story 5 — as has been suggested by Allen, who implied in an interview that Pixar may be kicking around the idea of spin-off films. Asked whether he thought Toy Story 4 constituted a decisive end to the series, the star said, "I can't give that away. There's very little to suggest that this isn't, at the very least, [part of] a much bigger world. It reminds me of the Avengers movies — there are not only offshoots of characters that have simultaneous stories, but the world itself got much bigger... I would find it difficult not to just continue."

The door to more Toy Story was likewise left open by Hanks, who was asked the same question at Toy Story 4's London premiere. "With the fourth one we don't know if it's the last, we don't know if it's the beginning of a new generation of it all," he said. "But I have always been knocked out by the words on the paper and the investment everyone takes on. These movies take the better part of five or six years... and they can't just be good or facile, they have to be worthwhile."

Well, Toy Story 4 proved itself to be quite worthwhile, and you can bet your bottom dollar that if Toy Story 5 were to ever happen, it would be just as heartfelt and lovingly crafted as the films that came before it. With doubts about whether the series even should continue after Toy Story 3 put to rest, fans would be sure to welcome a new chapter with open arms — and with a solid tale to tell, getting the principals of the voice cast back to the negotiating table wouldn't be too daunting of a task.

We're going to go out on a limb to predict that, yes, we find it likely that Toy Story 5 is an eventuality. That being said, considering the series' history, we may very well not see it for another decade or so. Even if that turns out to be the case, we're pretty sure it'll be worth the wait.