Ending Woody’s Story
Toy Story 4 sees Woody struggling to fit in among Bonnie’s toys and pining for Andy like any empty-nester would; he can’t help comparing his new owner to his previous kid, and soon realizes that Bonnie doesn’t seem to need him the way Andy did. (More often than not, Woody ends up left in the closet while Bonnie plays with Buzz, Jessie, and his other friends). Still, that doesn’t stop him from putting Bonnie’s happiness above anything else – so when her new favorite toy, Forky, attempts to escape, Woody considers it his responsibility to bring Forky home and make him feel like a member of the family.
But along the way, Woody encounters his lost love, Bo Peep, who ended up in an antique shop after being given away by Andy’s mom several years ago. Rather than wasting her years gathering dust on a shelf, Bo decided to embrace the life of a lost toy and all the independence it brought – like seeing the world by traveling from town to town with a carnival.
We learn in Toy Story 4 that Woody had the opportunity to go with Bo when she left Andy’s house, but he chose to put his own feelings aside because Andy still needed him. But now that Bonnie has moved on too, Woody realizes that he has a chance to follow his dreams of being with Bo and seeing the world. So when he’s offered the chance to return to the life he knew with Bonnie and his friends, or embark on a new adventure with Bo, he finally puts his own feelings ahead of his owner’s. He says a heartfelt goodbye to Buzz, Jessie, Slinky, Rex, Forky, and the rest of Andy’s toys, and walks off into the sunset with Bo.
Is Toy Story 4 Really the End?
According to the producers, yes – at least for Woody. “We see Toy Story 3 as the end of Woody’s time with Andy, and we really see this as the completion of Woody’s arc and the story of Buzz and Woody,” said Toy Story 4 producer Mark Nielsen.
Producer Jonas Rivera joked that they never say never at Pixar, but at least right now, the team behind the film considers Toy Story 4 to be the last Toy Story movie. “This was the final chapter. And as filmmakers, to be honest, we feel satisfied that this is where you can end it. Now, there’s an implied future to all these films and we never say never at Pixar. But as storytellers, we’re satisfied with this as the closing of the chapter.”
But Could There Be a Toy Story 5?
In the video above, Tim Allen told IGN that he tried to pitch an alternate ending for Toy Story 4, but the producers were determined to end with some closure: “I didn’t like it, I immediately pitched them an Easter egg and I came up with just a little bit that would suggest ‘there’s a way out of this,’ and they liked it, and they liked it, and they said ‘we’re not gonna go that way,'” he admitted.
Still, the Toy Story 4 post credits scenes give a sense that even if we’re not following these toys anymore, their adventures will continue, with Buzz and Jessie seeming to take more of a leadership role in Bonnie’s room; Forky getting a new handmade companion who is made from a knife instead of a spork; and Bo, Woody, Ducky, and Bunny helping the toys at the carnival find loving new homes. And even if we don’t get an official Toy Story 5, we’ll at least get to see Forky again as the star of a new Disney+ series called Forky Asks a Question.
What did you think of Toy Story 4’s emotional ending? Do you think it’s a good end for Woody, Buzz and the rest of the gang, or would you still like to see a Toy Story 5? Weigh in below!