Toy Story is one of the most beloved film franchises in Hollywood history and one of the highest-grossing animated series ever, with a total box office haul of over $3.3 billion. Check out our guide below to find out where to watch all the Toy Story movies and specials in order.
The good news for fans is that, in general, the Toy Story series is pretty straightforward and there isn’t too much jumping around to do within the timeline. There are a few exceptions though. For example, the first film in the Toy Story series is technically the spin-off, Lightyear.
At the start of the film, a message appears on-screen reading, “In 1995, a boy named Andy got a Buzz Lightyear toy for his birthday. It was from his favorite movie… This is that movie.” So, while Lightyear is much different from other Toy Story films and has a sci-fi story that takes place in outer space, it is connected to the Toy Story universe and takes place before anything else since it’s the movie that inspires Andy to get his Buzz Lightyear action figure.
From there, the series picks up with the first Toy Story film, which gave everyone iconic moments like “There’s a snake in my boot!” and the hilariously creepy cult of little green alien toys who idolize “The Claw”, not realizing they’re inside an arcade game.
Then comes Toy Story 2, where the group meets cowgirl Jessie after Woody is stolen by a greedy toy collector and finds himself in Al’s Toy Barn. Toy Story 2 was especially notable for being much more heart-wrenching and emotional than the original, with Jessie’s origin story being downright tragic. The series has since become known for its ability to bring on both the laughs and the tears with its storytelling.
Next up is Toy Story 3. This time around the gang believes that Andy is trying to throw them away, so to save themselves they hop in a donation box instead. The toys end up in the Sunnyside Daycare center where they meet a whole new group of toys…many of whom have been played with a little too much. This time, the enemy was the nefarious Lots-o’-Huggin’ bear, who was bitter after being replaced by his owner.
The third film had one notable missing character… Bo Peep. Though Peep did return for Toy Story 4, many wondered what happened to her between the second and fourth films. Luckily, Disney+ debuted the short film Lamp Life, which shows what Peep was up to during her hiatus.
Between the third and fourth films, the Toy Story crew also received two television specials, the Halloween-themed Toy Story of Terror, where the toys find themselves in a haunted motel, and Toy Story That Time Forgot, where the gang finds themselves on a playdate with other toys…and everything goes hilariously wrong.
The final installment in the franchise (so far) is 2019’s Toy Story 4. Now living with their new owner Bonnie, the gang meets a new toy… Forky, who is a makeshift toy created from a plastic spork. Throughout the movie, Forky can’t decide if he’s a toy or just trash, and it’s up to Woody and the others to convince him that he’s worthwhile and meaningful just the way he is.
With a fifth Toy Story film on the way, now is the perfect time to catch up on the franchise. Check out our guide below to find out where to stream the Toy Story series in order.