Nearly a decade has passed since the release of Toy Story 3, which is both good and bad. Good because we’ve finally stopped crying, but bad because we could really do with a fourth film by now.
It was all the way back in 2014 that we first learned Toy Story 4 was officially in the works, and a lot has happened since then.
However, after delays upon delays, we finally have a new official release date for the next film to feature Woody, Buzz & co.
It was confirmed on the Toy Story Facebook page that the fourth instalment of the animated series will hit cinemas on 21 June, 2019.
This is almost two years to the day after the original proposed release date of 16 June, 2017, and it looks like some of the initial hiccups have been overcome.
Original writers Rashida Jones and Will McCormack stepped away from the project in November 2017, citing “creative and, more importantly, philosophical differences”.
“There is so much talent at Pixar, and we remain enormous fans of their films. However, it is also a culture where women and people of color do not have an equal creative voice,” the pair said in a joint statement at the time.
So, what do we know about the new release? First of all, it won’t be Pixar’s next release – that honour goes to Incredibles 2, which is due out on 15 June this year.
The screenplay will be written by Stephany Folsom, best known for working on Thor: Ragnarok (but denied a credit).
Randy Newman is also on board, having earned Oscar nominations for his music work on the first three Toy Story films and winning the Academy Award for Best Original Song for ‘We Belong Together’ in Toy Story 3.
Woody, played by Tom Hanks, is expected to remain the focus of the fourth film, while other characters from Toy Story 3 confirmed for the next film include Buzz Lightyear (Tim Allen), Trixie (Kristen Schaal) and Mrs Potato Head (Estelle Harris).
However, what might be more significant is the return of Bo Peep, voiced by Annie Potts in the first two films but absent from the third. Toy Story 4 will, according to multiple reports, focus on the relationship between Woody and Bo Peep and explain the latter’s absence from the third film.
One major character who may not return, however, is Mr Potato Head. Don Rickles, who voiced the character, died in 2017 before having the chance to record any lines for the fourth instalment and there has yet to be an announcement about another voice actor reprising the role.