Thank you to Disney for hosting me at Pixar Studios to learn about Toy Story 4.
Toy Story 2 gave us Jessie and Bullseye, Toy Story 3 gave us Trixie and Dolly and Toy Story 3 introduces us to Forky, Gabby Gabby, Benson, Ducky and Bunny, Giggle McDimples and Duke Caboom. Each new toy is added to the Toy Story world with a lot of thought as to how they will help the story progress and how they will interact with other toys.
Pixar does such a wonderful job at bringing the new toys into the world that once we meet them, we can no longer remember Toy Story without them. The new characters from Toy Story 4 will soon become part of this permanent world for us to love.
Forky [Tony Hale] is my new favorite character. Created by Bonnie out of trash, Forky instantly becomes a favorite toy in Bonnie’s eyes, but he still believes he is trash. He doesn’t understand why he is suddenly more than just trash and continuously questions everything. Woody and his friends must show this spork why he is important and teach him how to become a toy.
My kids can’t wait for his new series, “Forky Asks A Question” coming to Disney+ in November.
Gabby Gabby [Christina Hendricks] is the first doll in the Toy Story world, and she just wants to be loved by a kid. Her many years in the antique mall, and creepy henchmen, have helped her shape the role of toy kingpin. But there is more to her story as the movie reveals. Her animation is so detailed. From the flecks in her eyes to the individual strands of hair, she is truly a beautiful doll.
Read more about Gabby Gabby in my Toy Story 4 cast interview.
The Bensons are terrifying – made even more terrifying by the fact there are four of them. They are the perfect combination of everything creepy about old ventriloquist dolls. With their lumbering movements and voiceless bodies, they make the perfect evil henchmen.
Ducky and Bunny
Ducky and Bunny [Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele] are the comic relief. Attached by the hand, they are a pair of carnival prizes who can’t wait to meet their new kid. Until their plans are rudely interrupted by Buzz Lightyear and they find themselves on an adventure.
My only gripe about Ducky and Bunny is that most of the toys I have seen for them are separate. It’s silly, but it bugs me.
Giggle McDimples [Ally Maki] is the friend every girl needs. The pocket-sized toy is the smallest in the Toy Sory universe. She has clearly been by Bo Peep’s side for some adventures, and she knows a bit about Bo’s past as well. She is loyal and supportive, and much like Jiminy Cricket, she is also a voice of reason to Bo Peep. I love that Giggle McDimples is also an officer of the law (head of Pet Patrol for Miniopolis) mirroring Sherif Woody.
Duke Caboom [Keanu Reeves] is a Canadian daredevil stuntman, with a soft side. He has all the swagger, but when it comes to his stunts he’s never quite lived up to the hype. But he’s willing to put his skills to the test to help his friends. Yes, he CANADA!
Read more about Duke Caboom in my Toy Story 4 cast interview.
The Closet Toys
Last, but not least, let’s talk about a series of cameos you might have overlooked. Early in Toy Story 4, Woody finds himself in the closet during playtime (and questioning his position at Bonnie’s head toy). While in the closet he finds himself among some of Bonnie’s other long-forgotten toys who are voiced by comedy legends – Melephant Brooks [Mel Brooks], Chairol Burnett [Carol Burnett], Carl Reineroceros [Carl Reiner], and Bitey White [Betty White].
It’s a short scene, but proof that every toy is important in the Toy Story Wold.
Toy Story 4 is in theaters June 21. Go see it!!!
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