Woody, Buzz and friends have continued to draw audiences to the box office in droves since they first hit the screen in 1995 with the release of “Toy Story,” and this weekend that tradition should hold true when the next film in the franchise, “Toy Story 4,” hits theaters.
Research on the Rotten Tomatoes website shows that the first three films, produced on a total budget of $320 million, have grossed more than $1.9 billion worldwide.
Each film set box office records - with the third included in the top 15 all time worldwide films - and all three films have received generally positive reviews from critics and audiences.
According to The Number’s website, the series is the 24th highest-grossing franchise worldwide and the fifth highest-grossing animated franchise behind “Despicable Me,” “Shrek,” “Ice Age,” and “Madagascar.”
In the first film, Buzz Lightyear threatens to replace Woody as their owner Andy’s favorite toy. In the second film, Woody meets Jesse and the rest of his cowboy family as his toy friends try to take him back from a toy owner who has stolen him, and finally, in the third film, all of the toys deal with a stint in a daycare after they’re donated when Andy moves off to college.
In the upcoming fourth film, Woody (Tom Hanks, “Forrest Gump” and “Saving Private Ryan”) has always been confident about his place in the world, and that his priority is taking care of his kid, whether that’s Andy or Bonnie, according to the film’s production company. So when Bonnie’s beloved new craft-project-turned-toy, Forky (Tony Hale, “Arrested Development” and “Veep”), declares himself as “trash” and not a toy, Woody takes it upon himself to show Forky why he should embrace being a toy. But when Bonnie takes the whole gang on her family’s road trip excursion, Woody ends up on an unexpected detour that includes a reunion with his long-lost friend Bo Peep (Annie Potts, “Ghostbusters” and “Designing Women”). After years of being on her own, Bo’s adventurous spirit and life on the road belie her delicate porcelain exterior. As Woody and Bo realize they’re worlds apart when it comes to life as a toy, they soon come to find that’s the least of their worries.
Directed by Josh Cooley, the film is rated G.
Other films being released to theaters this weekend include:
n “Child’s Play,” directed by Lars Klevberg and staring Aubrey Plaza, Brian Tyree Henry, Gabriel Bateman, Mark Hamill and Tim Matheson. A contemporary re-imagining of the 1988 horror classic, Child’s Play follows Karen, a single mother who gifts her son Andy a Buddi doll, unaware of its more sinister nature.
The film is rated R for bloody horror violence and language throughout.
n “Wild Rose,” directed by Tom Harper and staring Jessie Buckley, Julie Walters, Sophie Okonedo and Jamie Sives. The film tells the complicated story of Rose-Lynn, a woman on a quest to become a country music star, while also grappling with the responsibilities of being recently released from prison and a young mother of two children.
The film is rated R for language throughout, some sexuality and brief drug material.
The synopsis for each film is from rottentomatoes.com.