Director Lee Unkrich

Producer Darla K Anderson

Production company Pixar Animation Studios

US distributor Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

International distributor Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures International

US release date June 18, 2010

Pixar revolutionised animated film-making in 1995 with Toy Story, the first feature-length CG-animation. Fifteen years later, the return of Buzz, Woody and the gang for the franchise’s third outing has been a global commercial smash for Pixar/Disney, and packs an emotional wallop at its climax that had adults teary-eyed and critics reaching for the superlatives.

The film has proved the best-performing of the three Toy Story films, scoring more than $1bn worldwide. The use of 3D has also helped extend the film’s reach and it is undoubtedly a contender in the best picture race as well as a frontrunner for the animated feature Oscar, a category Pixar has won for the past three years. It also won the animated feature Golden Globe, and Bafta nominations for animated film, adapted screenplay and special visual effects.

Toy Story 3 catches up with Andy as he is about to go to college. He donates his toys to Sunnyside Daycare — but all is not as it appears there and the toys must mount an audacious prison break. The film also introduces new characters, including psychotic bear Lotso and the preening Ken.

The third film was directed by Lee Unkrich, the co-director of Toy Story 2, with Darla K Anderson producing. It was written by Michael Arndt, who won the original screenplay Oscar in 2007 for Little Miss Sunshine.

“We had to stay true to the world of Toy Story, but keep it fresh, get it right, make it entertaining,” says Anderson. “We had to keep ourselves grounded in the design language and the look and feel of the characters, but recreate them with our current technology. So between the story and the world and the characters and the technology, we had to find this place of telling a compelling new story but staying in line with this classic feel and timeless space.”

Toy Story picked up three Oscar nominations and a special achievement Oscar for John Lasseter. Toy Story 2 picked up an Oscar nomination in the original song category.