According to John Lasseter and Lee Unkrich, all the Pixar movies starting with Toy Story, released in 1991, to Planes, released in 2014, are connected. They hint that the “Pixar Theory” only involved Pixar animators; however Ollie Johnson and Frank Thomas elude that multiple movie ideas were being tossed about then they worked under Disney.
The “Pixar Theory” really begins with The Good Dinosaur, released in 2015. It is set in an alternate universe over 65 million years ago. In The Good Dinosaur we see that animals, including dinosaurs, can speak but can also communicate with people, where we see the first interaction between the two. Brave, the second on the timeline was released in 2012, but set in the 14th to 15th century Scotland. In Brave, Merida (the princess) discovers “The-Will-Of-The-Wisps,” otherwise known as magic. She followed these wisps to an old witch who helped turned her mother into a bear. As shown in the movie, the bear version of the Queen acted like a human for a bit. The Queen did regress as a bear but was turned back into her human-self at the end. The magic from the wisps eventually created a superhero gene.
This brings us to The Incredibles, set in the 1950s to 1960s Chicago. “The Incredibles,” which was released in 2004, tells the tale of a family of superheroes who battle the first self-serving artificial intelligent bot called the “omnidroid. ”Omnidroid was created by Buddy, a wanna-be superhero, who also created Zero Point Energy to destroy the superheroes. At some point the Zero Point Energy was absorbed by toys. This is because the energy is able to travel in unseen wavelengths.
Toy Story, released in 1991 and set in 1997 to 198 Ohio, is next on the timeline. Toy Story reveals the first signs of life in toys and shows how they have a code of rules. Toy Story also shows that the toys have learned that the best way to survive is on human love. What happens when the toys are separated from their owners? We find out in Toy Story 2, released and set in 1999, which explains how dangerous it is for them. Toys start questioning their purpose and begin hating their owners. Hate towards humans wasn’t just from toys it was also from animals. In 2003 we meet Nemo, Dory and Marlin in Finding Nemo which is the story of Marlin (Nemo’s father) who searches for Nemo after he was captured by a human. On his search he meets Dory, a very forgetful fish. In Finding Nemo we see that fish and other marine animals are just as advanced as humans and toys but we also find that the oceans are being polluted and that some fish are being used for experimentation. This would explain Dory’s behavior, between her being forgetful and yet can read. In Finding Dory, which takes places a year later, we learn the backstory of Dory and how she knows more than most, as well as being able to speak other languages, like whale.
Another movie that shows the animals resentment is in Ratatouille, released and set in 2007, Paris, France. Ratatouille is about a little rat, Remy, demonstrates a multitude of human characteristics and connects to Linguini, a human. Remy controls Linguini because it is the only way Remy can cook. However Remy’s rat clan disagree with Remy’s interaction. They feel both fear and hate towards humans.
This leads us back to Toy Story 3, released in 2010, where we see the toys rallying to revolt. Lots, the Huggin’ Bear, is the leader of the rebellious toys and tries to take care of his own kind. Lots is tired of being physically and emotionally abused, as are machines. However Andy, the owner of Buzz and Woody, was warned by Carl and Ellie about an uprise from the toys. They write to him saying they are planning on living in solitude.
UP, also released in 2010 but set in 2011 to 2016, mostly in South America, begins with Ellie and Carl’s friendship blooming into a loving marriage. Ellie dies and Carl decided to keep her promise and go to Paradise Falls. Before Carl has the courage to do so, the city is trying to force him to move because they want to expand. Finally Carl is brave enough, thanks to Russell a boy scout trying desperately to earn his badges, to move Carl and Ellie’s house to Paradise Falls. During their adventure Russell and Carl meet Dug, a talking dog, and even, a rare bird. They are faced against Charles Muntz, an explorer, and his pac of dogs who want Kevin. Years later the uprising between animals and humans occurred. The animals lost because machines teamed up with the humans, This caused more pollution so Buy N’ Large sent the humans off to space in the spaceship Axiom, which we see in later films.
In 2015, Pixar releases Inside Out, which explains how humans run on emotions and imagination. There are different levels to it, which takes a lot from experiences, including Riley’s imaginary friend Bing Bong, which was inspired by Monster’s Inc. We are then taken to Mexico with the film Coco, which we assume takes place in 2017, the same year it is released. In Coco we learn that our energy translates to the afterlife, and that we live on through our ancestors emotions. It is also extremely similar to how Will-of-the-Wisps were created.
On Earth, though the machines are now running things, which we see in Cars (2006), Cars 2 (2011), Cars 3 (2017) Planes (2013) and Planes: Fire and Rescue (2014). All four if these movies were set in 2100 to 2200, spread across the world to show us that no humans were left on earth. In Cars 2 there is an energy crisis. The big company Allinol, which is owned by Buy N’ Large, uses green energy to fuel a war in order to turn cars away from the energy alternatives. This green energy actually decommissioning many vehicles. This caused a lot of pollution. In WALL-E we see the implications of this mass amount of pollution, which has collected over the years. Set in 2800 to 2900 Earth we see a little robot WALL-E who is the one of a few survivors thanks to his fascination with human culture an his cockroach companion. While on Axiom, the machines have developed a sense of purpose, which is when we meet the robot Eve. Eve is sent to Earth to see if it is habitable for the humans on Axiom, which is when we meet the robot Eve. Eve is sent to Earth to see if its habitable for the humans on Axiom, when she meets WALL-E. WALL-E shows Eve the last living plant and she signals for Axiom to come down to Earth to have a new beginning. In the credits of WALL-E we see the last plant having grown into a mighty tree. This brings us to A Bug’s Life, released in 1998 but set in 2898 to 3000. This movie shows how bugs now live longer. The bugs do not mention humans in this movie but do say there are “snakes, birds and bigger bugs” which is believed to be a reference to a mutated gene, which later becomes a dominant species.
This species are called monsters and we are first introduced to them in Monsters University, released in 2013 but set in 4500 to 5000. In Monsters University we see that the monsters are falsely taught that humans are toxic and are from another world. They were afraid that the humans were going to erase their existence and alter history. In Monsters Inc., we see that the machines and the monsters have realized their mistake when it came to humans. They discovered that they need the humans to sustain their life’s energy. With the help from machines they have created a way for the monsters to travel back in time using doors to visit the humans, which brings us Boo. Boo learned how to use the time traveling system and continued to search for her monster friend Sully. Boo travels back and leaves clues throughout the movies.
Onward, according to Negroni, hasn’t been completely flushed out but he suspects that it takes place between WALL-E and Monster’s University. He thinks it is possible that magical creatures o took the places of humans and somehow harnessed the energy to create their own modern cities. He also thinks that the human energy, aka those emotions, can create magic, which is what Monsters have been doing since 1313, according to Monsters University.
However, I think it goes far beyond that. Actually I know it does. All the movies from Snow White to Onward have linked through the Easter Eggs and Hidden Mickey’s. If you want to find out more, please subscribe and buy my book The Disney Pixar Connection.