The pixar theory 2016

The pixar theory 2016 DEFAULT
Quick Answer: The Pixar Theory is a fan theory authored by Jon Negroni that connects all the Pixar films into one coherent timeline, starting with The Good Dinosaur and ending with Monsters, Inc. It explains the existence of magic, intelligent animals, and even talking cars all in one interconnected universe. Negroni has updated the theory several times to incorporate recently released films.

Back in , Pixar enthusiast Jon Negroni connected every single Pixar film into one massive timeline known as the Pixar Theory. Negroni describes a single Pixar universe that explains the co-existence of everything in the Pixar filmography, from magic to talking cars. Since the theory must adapt to every new Pixar release, Negroni has made a number of edits to his original theory in order to include Inside Out(), The Good Dinosaur () and Finding Dory ().

The current version of the timeline begins over 65 million years ago with the events of The Good Dinosaur. In this movie, the asteroid that would have caused the extinction of dinosaurs misses Earth, allowing all prehistoric creatures to continue to evolve into intelligent creatures. Therefore, The Good Dinosaur provides the foundation for the fact that, in the Pixar universe, animals can become just as intelligent as humans.

Intelligent dinosaurs can build and maintain farms in The Good Dinosaur ()

Even without the asteroid, as the Earth’s climate begins to change and humans become the dominant species, the dinosaurs still eventually become extinct. After the humans rule the Earth, the next film on the timeline is Brave (), which takes place in medieval Scotland. In the film, Merida discovers and follows a will-o’-the-wisp (a magical spirit) that leads her to a powerful Witch. Although Brave is the first movie in the timeline that uses magic, it never answers the question of how magic comes to exist. Negroni believes that Kevin from Up () is the answer to this question.

Will-o’-the-wisps are the first evidence of magic in the Pixar Universe

Although Up takes place long after Brave, within Up Kevin the bird is a living fossil whose ancestors most likely predate the events of Brave. As a colorful flightless bird, Kevin resembles the prehistoric creatures seen in The Good Dinosaur. Negroni explains that the elderly explorer Charles Muntz discovered that Kevin’s eggs could slow down the aging process, which explains how Muntz is still alive during the events of Up. It is possible that the prolonged evolution of these prehistoric creatures created a sort of “magic” that could be harnessed by humans.

According to Negroni, evolution may explain why Kevin the bird has special abilities

Negroni continues that, around the time Muntz first discovered these magical abilities, people began to gain superpowers as seen in The Incredibles (). This means that it is possible that the abilities that Muntz discovered were used to alter humans into superheroes through government experiments. Interestingly, although The Incredibles takes place in the s and 60s, the technology that we see in the movie surpasses anything that exists in our real world today. Negroni believes that this is because of a dearth of oil in the Pixar universe. Since the dinosaurs did not go extinct all at once, there were fewer deceased organisms to become oil. To avoid an energy crisis, scientists began to develop new technology at a much faster pace. During this time, Incredibles villain Syndrome was able to develop A.I. and Zero Point Energy. According to Negroni, Zero Point Energy is the energy that toys and objects absorb in order to become sentient.

Syndrome using a weapon that is powered by Zero Point Energy

By the s and s, toys finally come to life (thanks to Syndrome’s Zero Point Energy), leading to the Toy Story series. Although the toys rely on humans to provide them with life through love and attention, in all three Toy Story movies, we see toys being abandoned and misused. Negroni infers that eventually the toys would begin to resent their neglectful human owners. In Negroni’s timeline the toys, dissatisfied with their treatment, join with other objects and machines to plot an uprising.

Around the same time, Negroni says animals become concerned about pollution and reckless human behavior. In Finding Nemo () and Finding Dory, we see that humans are the sea creatures’ biggest threats. Even in Ratatouille (), we meet a group of rats angry and afraid of the humans who try to kill them. Angered by the destructive actions of humans, Negroni says, the animals eventually go to war against the humans.

But while the machines also resent humans, they depend on them for their energy and existence. Therefore, the machines help the humans win the war against the animals and toys. Still, the conflict leads to an overly polluted Earth. This is when the machines and A.I. decide to take over. Negroni explains that the machines use the omnipresent corporation BNL to slowly take control of humans, starting in the s after the events of The Incredibles.

Even Buzz Lightyear is powered by BNL batteries

BNL’s eventual full takeover as seen in Wall-E ()

At the end of the animal-human war, humans are forced to evacuate the planet and board the Axiom, where they become fully dependent on the machines as seen in Wall-E (). Meanwhile, cars and other machines are left to populate and dominate the Earth. With the planet void of humans, the events of the Cars (, ) franchise are able to take place. During this future time, the energy crisis worsens, and the planet soon becomes barren of any life or sentient machines.

After several generations, EVE is sent back to Earth to search for any sign of life and finds a small plant growing in the soil, leading to the events of Wall-E. With the help of EVE and Wall-E, the humans are able to overcome the evil A.I. keeping them on the ship and go home. Once they return to Earth, the humans plant the sapling that EVE found, and it grows into a large tree that eventually becomes home to the insects of A Bug’s Life ().

The tree seen in the end credits of Wall-E might be the tree seen in A Bug’s Life ()

Hundreds of years after the events of Wall-E and A Bug’s Life, animals became more and more mutated until they became “monsters.” In the distant future, these monsters eradicate human civilization. However, the monsters soon realize that they actually need humans as a source of energy. By using magical doors, the monsters are able to time travel to different human generations and are each assigned a human to scare in order to retrieve their screams for fuel. This is how Sulley is able to meet and befriend Boo in Monsters, Inc ().

The doors that the monsters use may have the ability to travel through time

Eventually, the monsters learn that human laughter is a more powerful source of energy and begin to make children laugh instead. Negroni believes this is where Bing Bong, Riley’s imaginary friend from Inside Out, comes in. Based on his monstrous (yet humorous) design, Bing Bong was most likely Riley’s monster before becoming her imaginary friend.

Riley’s imaginary friend (and, perhaps, monster) Bing Bong in Inside Out ()

While Riley is able to forget about Bing Bong, Boo becomes obsessed with finding Sulley again. By using her knowledge of magical doors, Negroni believes that Boo ends up in medieval Scotland to find the source of all magic and becomes the Witch that Merida meets in Brave.

Could the witch in Brave () actually be Boo from Monsters, Inc. ()?

Of course, this is all a fan theory, albeit a very well-thought-out one, that has never been confirmed by Pixar and contains several far-fetched leaps, including an interspecies world war that happens offscreen. Interestingly, Negroni’s theory posits that human beings are an essential energy source for the survival of the toys, machines, and monsters (the descendants of animals). This founding assumption gives humanity a special status, of spiritual or even magical proportions, within the Pixar universe, whether or not this is the filmmakers’ intention.

Regardless of the theory’s veracity, shared universes are a fun way for fans to connect their favorite movies together. As Pixar continues to release more films, the theory will have to adapt in order to include the new storylines. While Pixar’s recent Finding Dory fits into the theory seamlessly through its connections to Finding Nemo, Pixar’s next scheduled original film Coco () will no doubt alter the timeline once again.

Pixar Animation Studios logo.

The Pixar universe theory, or simply Pixar theory, proposes the existence of a "shared universe" in which every film created by Pixar Animation Studios takes place, sharing characteristics and an internal logic. Although the popularity of the theory started in with blogger Jon Negroni, the idea was already discussed before then.

Speaking in an interview in , Cars "franchise guardian" Jay Ward rejected the theory, saying: "It's almost like the 9/11 conspiracy theories it's like, really? No, the movies were sort of made in a different order by different directors in different times, in different places. It's cool that it all worked out that way, but it probably was not intentional."[1] At the D23 Expo, during the "Pixar Secrets Revealed" panel, director Mark Andrews also rejected the Pixar theory, and Inside Out co-director Ronnie del Carmen said: "Do you know what kinds of meetings we'd have to have to make sure all our movies line up?!"[2] The theory was also criticized by YouTube personalities and other commentators unrelated to Pixar.


Media discussion about a "Pixar universe" has existed since at least ,[3] and has been referred to in disparate sources such as SlashFilm,[4]Washington Times,[5]Reno Gazette-Journal, and MTV News.[6]

In To Infinity and Beyond!: The Story of Pixar Animation Studios, the companion book to documentary The Pixar Story, Karen Paik states that there are many internal references between various films in the Pixar universe.[7] In , CityNews Toronto made comparisons between nine "Pixar universe" films.[8]

In his thesis titled "The Pixar Theory", Jon Negroni wrote that all fourteen Pixar movies released at the time took place in a single fictional universe. He acknowledged that the concepts behind his thesis were derived from a episode of the video series After Hours, written by Daniel O'Brien.[9] In his post, Negroni discusses all of the films and how they relate in a timeline of events. The character of Boo in Monsters, Inc. is said to create a time loop, and consequently is the same character as the Witch in Brave. As Pixar released new movies, Negroni wrote new posts to fit each new plotline in the whole theory: in June , he published an article on and another one on his website explaining how Inside Out also fits into his theory; on December 3, , he wrote another post expanding his theory to The Good Dinosaur[11] and on June 17, another article explaining how the timeline encompasses Finding Dory as well.[12] Negroni had also fit the Cars spin-off series, Planes, into the theory, even though it was not made by Pixar.[13][14][15] The blog io9 described Negroni's work as "a crazy read, one that Negroni has been annotating as readers point to corrections or flaws in his theory. But even as a tinfoil hat theory, it makes some clever connections—and, of course, contains plenty of Pizza Planet trucks."[16]

Kingdom Hearts[edit]

In the universe in which the Kingdom Hearts franchise takes place, the worlds of many Disney/Pixar films are linked through a shared universe. The residents of the different worlds are largely unaware of the existence of other worlds, and it's stated many times by series regular Donald Duck that an order between the worlds must be kept in order to prevent confusion. The only ones able to travel between these worlds are people able to travel through a realm of pure darkness, or cross the universe using special "gummi blocks," disproving such a theory. Toy Story and Monsters, Inc. are series that are represented in the third game as separate worlds, as well.

Negroni's fictional theorized plot[edit]

Jon Negroni proposes that the Pixar universe is an alternative version of our universe where magic made animals intelligent and later rebellious against humans, while some humans were also born with superpowers. This prompts conflicts between these two groups, and later human-made intelligent objects, like machines and toys. Machines and humans later unite and defeat the animals. However, due to manipulation by machines, the Earth gradually becomes more and more polluted to the point of human uninhabitability. Humans begin to live in space where they are controlled by machines for centuries. Humans eventually return to Earth, but are wiped out due to the pollution. The animals survive and, because of the effects of radioactive pollution, evolve into mutated creatures known as monsters. Monsters form a far advanced society capable of time-travelling, but their technology depends on energy obtained from the emotions of humans from the past.[17][18]


The Good Dinosaur (prehistory)[edit]

According to Negroni, the much longer time the dinosaurs had to evolve allowed them to develop their own intelligence: in the film, they have a language and practice farming and animal husbandry. At the time the film takes place, millions of years after their non-occurring extinction, the dominant dinosaurs are obsessed with survival due to scarce food and hostile environments, while mammals (including humans) are beginning to thrive.

Even though dinosaurs still die out, this longstanding evolution causes many weird-looking creatures to emerge, like the dreaded cluckers, those seen in Thunderclap's gang, the anglerfish in Finding Nemo, and those from Paradise Falls in Up. Magic, a result of this alternative evolution, would be discovered and secretly handled by some humans in the future. This includes the witch in Brave, Charles Muntz in Up (who uses it in his inventions to live an exceedingly long and healthy life and make dogs talk), and the government experimentations to create supers in The Incredibles. Magic would also make animals gradually intelligent.

The scarcity of fossil fuels, another effect of dinosaurs existing for more time, prompts humanity to look for alternative fuels much before they would in our timeline. This is alluded to in the Cars franchise, in which an oil crisis related to "dead dinosaurs" is mentioned, and Dinoco's logo is a living dinosaur. As a result of this earlier concern about an oil crisis, humanity develops technology faster, and this would explain the advanced technology seen in The Incredibles, which takes place in the s, and the survival of humans much after Cars. The zero-point energy discovered by Syndrome would be the "human energy" which is so important in this universe.[11]

Brave (10th century)[edit]

Early in the Middle Ages, objects and animals are seen behaving like humans due to magic handled by a witch apparently related to mysterious blue lights known as will-o'-the-wisps, which appear in the woods. The witch experimented on various animals, which acquired intelligence and personality and interbred, eventually expanding their population. The witch is in fact Boo from Monsters, Inc., who had used magic to time travel to that time.

The Incredibles and Incredibles 2 (s and s)[edit]

Brad Bird, the director of The Incredibles, confirmed that it takes place in an alternate version of the early s, thus placing the film's prologue at the late s. Both the superpowers and the zero-point energy mastered by Syndrome are results of the same magic seen in Brave. Toys would eventually absorb the zero-point energy, which can travel through wavelengths, and acquire the potential they offer. Negroni also states that one of the signs of the machine rebellion against humans in this chronology is seen when the Omnidroid v, a highly improved AI machine, turns back on Syndrome, its own creator, and starts attacking random people.

Toy Story and Toy Story 2 (–)[edit]

An inanimate-object organized society is first shown, with toys living under their own code of rules, in secrecy of humans. They later find out that human love can be a source of energy, and learn that being abandoned by humans is dangerous, thus questioning their purpose of life. For example, Jessie feels resentful towards the fact that her former owner, Emily, abandoned her.

Finding Nemo and Finding Dory (–)[edit]

The first known intelligent animals after dinosaurs are seen. Fish form a fairly advanced society, with schools and network systems, and birds are also shown to be intelligent. This would be a result of experimentation with the same mysterious energy handled by the witch, and that gave supers their powers. Dory's short-term memory loss would mean that fish are evolving very fast, with the intelligence failing to fully or properly develop in some of them. Even though they do not communicate with humans yet, fish show resentment towards humans because they pollute the environment and cage them. The dentist's aquarium fish devise elaborate plans which eventually allow them to flee their captivity. In Finding Dory, Hank is the first to show a clear despise or fear about human treatment of sea creatures, and a toy fish (an inanimate object) apparently helps Marlin and Nemo to escape a small aquarium.[12]

Up ()[edit]

After a judicial decision, Carl has to give up his old house to a corporation that is expanding in the city, while in WALL-E, Buy n Large is the cause for polluting the Earth and wiping out life in the distant future, as a result of technology overreach. Negroni proposes that the two movies refer to the same corporation. Charles Muntz invents collars which allow dogs to express verbally. This would be another use of the old magic. Furthermore, Negroni concludes that Up may take place after Toy Story 3, because an easter egg in the latter shows a postcard from Ellie and Carl. Luxo, Inc. is seen once again near the beginning. Carl's pills come from "Luxo Drugs".

Ratatouille ()[edit]

Communication between humans and animals is first seen, with Remy mimicking to Linguini and controlling his movements, and later his entire rat colony working in Gusteau's kitchen. Remy has outstanding abilities in cooking, better than any human seen, perhaps even Gusteau; he also walks on two paws, cleans his hands and reads. It is shown that his colony, especially his father, sees humans as enemies, prompting a negative sentiment in animals towards humans. Negroni suggests that after the events of the movie, the main villain, Chef Skinner, spread the rumour that animals, or at least some of them, were intelligent and capable of even outperforming humans.

Toy Story 3 ()[edit]

A postcard of Carl and Ellie in Andy's room, an easter egg in the movie, puts it chronologically before or after Up as it is unknown when Carl gave this postcard to Andy, it could have been given after the events of Up. Lots-o'-Huggin' Bear shows a strong animosity towards humans after his owner Daisy replaced him. Moved by hatred, he starts to lead a toy population and believes that every toy will be sooner or later discarded by the humans who own them. This provides another reason for why human-made objects are motivated to take over. In this film, we briefly see that Buzz Lightyear's batteries are produced by the mega corporation Buy n Large (BnL), which shows great importance in later films.


Inside Out is said to take place in the same year as it was released, due to Riley owning a Skype laptop and the presence of smartphones throughout the film, however technology is developing faster in this universe. It is shown that a child's joy is much more powerful and active than the other emotions, while in an adult, joy, sadness, fear, anger and disgust seem to co-operate with relatively the same level of importance. Negroni sees this as a connection to Monsters, Inc. in which laughter (joy) is said to contain much more energy than screaming (fear), thus being more effective to sustain the monster society. Also, Riley's imaginary friend in the film, Bing Bong, is described as her perception of a monster from the future, who occasionally visited her and tried to make her laugh in order to obtain her energy. It is also thought that the emotions are what keeps AI like WALL-E functional, and that is why he is the only one of all the other WALL-Es still alive, due to his fascination of all things to do with humans. In Cars 2, there is an energy crisis, which is because of the long-term absence of humans.

Coco ()[edit]

In Coco, we learn that Lightning McQueen had a human driver, named Bobby, at that time due to an easter egg of Lightning McQueen shoes worn by Bobby. Also, the town from Coco is seen briefly on a computer screen in Cars 3. In Coco, we see that if someone is forgotten they fade. Just like Bing Bong's death in Inside Out because there were no memory orbs left of him. The deaths of the characters even looked similar.

Cars, Cars 2, and Cars 3 (–)[edit]

In WALL-E, BnL had to send the remaining humans into space in starships in the early 22nd century. Negroni suggests that the Cars franchise takes place after these events (and before the events of WALL-E, which is set about eight centuries after the ships departed), when Earth was dominated by the machines (cars). While the Cars franchise is clearly set on Earth, no humans are seen, suggesting it may take place in a different time period, possibly after they were wiped out. We can also see that there are still some animals on Earth, because some birds are seen on a telephone wire during the "Life is a Highway" montage.

In Cars 2, an oil crisis is mentioned. A corporation named Allinol pretends to sell biofuels, while its plans actually consist of preventing cars from using alternative energy sources. Allinol may have been run by BnL (or be just another name of BnL itself), which ended up inundating the entire Earth with oil. The world then becomes uninhabitable by humans, leading to the events of WALL-E. This movie is also the last known appearance of Luxo, Inc. with a "Luxo Airlines" ticket in the credits. Luxo, Inc. probably merged with BnL.

Luxo, Inc. is also seen in Up where Carl's pills are from a pharmacy named "Luxo Drugs".

In Cars 3, a BnL raceway appeared in one of Jackson Storm's victories.

WALL-E ()[edit]

Centuries thereafter, the world is highly polluted, with the only seen inhabitants being WALL-E and a cockroach he befriends, suggesting a survival of insects in the midst of this apocalyptical environment. Humans are extremely dependent on machines, which made them ignorant about their past and purpose. The Axiom's autopilot is an example of authoritarian machines fighting to maintain the current order where humans are dumb and decadent. The tree that grows at the end of the movie is described as the same tree near the ant colony in A Bug's Life. The year is referenced as the start of Captain B. McCrea's rule.

A Bug's Life ()[edit]

Insects, especially ants, form the most complex non-human society so far, with cities, cloth-wearing and even their own machines. This would be a result of an advanced evolution. Humans are not seen and barely mentioned, meaning they are either absent or uncommon. The same trailer from Monsters Inc. is seen, but the vegetation around is dead and in much smaller amount, suggesting the more polluted environment around. The ants are surviving descendants of today's insects, and have evolved to only have four limbs.

Monsters University and Monsters, Inc. (–)[edit]

The animals who lived on Earth gradually mutate due to the radioactive pollution. They evolve into the monsters seen in the Monsters, Inc. franchise. The monsters eventually become the most advanced society in the timeline, with human-like cities, companies and universities. But they are even more advanced than humans, since the "dimension" to where monsters travel to obtain the energy required to power up is actually the past, where humans existed, and the doors are time machines built for this purpose. By the end of Monsters, Inc., the last movie in the chronology so far, monsters find out that laughter contains far more energy than fear, thus changing their main fuel.

Negroni proposes that Boo is the same character as the witch seen in Brave. After the events of Monsters, Inc., Boo becomes upset about never seeing Sulley again. Through her life, she tries to find a way to return to the monster world and find Sulley. Remembering that wardrobe doors could lead to him, she eventually learns about their time travel properties and begins to use them. However, unable to determine to what time period she would travel, she visits several ones. Wood carvings of Sulley and the Pizza Planet truck (the latter being a recurring easter egg in the Pixar films) are seen in the witch's cottage in Brave. Those carvings would mean that the witch is connected to Sulley and knows about future technologies (cars), thus identifying her as Boo. For some reasons, parts of this theories had already been confirmed by the official, or the director. Through the doors of Monsters world, the human world is nothing but the world of Toy Story. For example, Boo has a Jessie doll that she gave to Sulley.[citation needed]


Critics of the theory have pointed out some of the flaws that it contains and use the Pixar movies themselves to pick holes in the theory.[19][20] YouTuber Bobsheaux, in his June video “The Pixar Theory Debunked”, signals among other things that:

  • The theory says that animal sentience and human-like behavior comes from Merida's mother turning into a bear in Brave, yet we see the mother be turned back into human at the end of the movie and having no interaction with other animals, nor is never established that magic exists in Ratatouille or Finding Nemo universes.[21] Mark Russell on his article Deconstructing the Pixar Theory points out something similar and also mentions that the witch in Brave seems to be immortal as she also turned Prince Mordu into a bear, and that both Mordu and Queen Elinor were acting more like animals as time passes instead of the other way around.[19] Russell also mentions that no animosity between humans and animals is shown in Up, Finding Nemo or Ratatouille and that, in fact, the dogs in Up end as pets of Carl and Russell after they defeat Charles Muntz.[19]
  • The placement of Inside Out on the theory timeline is very sloppy. Riley and her San Francisco classmates are seen in the background of Finding Dory (which was confirmed by Disney), so Inside Out has to have happened during Finding Dory. This does not match up with the theory timeline. Also, we see memories of Carl and Ellie's wedding and Carl's floating house in Riley's memories, which would put Inside Out after Up.
  • The existence of intelligent rats cooking in Paris made public by Chef Skinner was what inspires Charles Muntz from Up to create the collar to understand dogs, but Muntz is lost in the South American jungle since the thirties and the events of Ratatouille happen in modern Paris, so therefore he wouldn’t be there in that timeline (even when he’s busy trying to capture Kevin in the jungle).[21]
  • The magic use by the witch in Brave is the one that causes machines to become intelligent and compete with humans, including the giant robot used by Syndrome in The Incredibles, yet Syndrome used science and not magic to create it, and the robot is not sentient, it’s following its programming design by Syndrome.[21] The robot did not “rebel”, it was Syndrome's mistake in the programing what makes it act as it acts. Same in the case of the robots from WALL-E who are also following their programming and not, as some theorists say, revenging on humanity by keeping them inactive.[21]
  • The idea that machines naturally hate humans postulated by Negroni is contradicted by the fact that the toys (included as “machines” in the theory) naturally love humans.[21] Also, during WALL-E, the title character is seen befriending several humans, while WALL-E and EVE actually help humans by making them renounce Buy 'N' Large's lifestyle, returning them to Earth, and in restoring Earth (as seen during the credits).
  • The theory states that after the great war, humans were sent to the Axiom while machines were left behind to populate and run things. But it is mentioned multiple times in WALL-E that the humans were only supposed to be on the Axiom for five years. Also, a magazine is seen that says an evacuation is ordered due to pollution. If the humans were only supposed to be gone for five years, then why did the machines make their own civilization on Earth?
  • Albeit it is said in the theory that the events in Cars are the period during which machines rule Earth and the remaining humans are in space seen in WALL-E, the world of Cars looks clean with blue skies and green fields, not having all the garbage seen in WALL-E, aside from the semi-organic nature of the Cars that have things like tongues.[21]
  • The plant that EVE recovered in WALL-E is the tree seen in A Bug's Life, but the landscape is different. And if WALL-E happens in the far future and thus A Bug's Life must happen even further, A Bug's Life has lots of contemporary references and human presence (in a time where humans are supposed to be extinct) including a poster of The Lion King musical that couldn't be still playing in the far future and a homeless bug holds the sign “Kid pulled my wings off”. Also another aspect he points out is that there are toys based on the characters of A Bug's Life in Toy Story, thus proving that A Bug's Life is a movie in the Toy Story universe, unless the toy based on Flik was made by someone who somehow can see the future.[21]
  • The theory postulates that the monsters in Monsters, Inc. are actually mutated animals or human-animal hybrids in the far future using the doors to travel back in time, yet they use a map to measure the time zone on Earth starting by the Eastern Seaboard, to know when is nighttime in the human world, something unnecessary if they were traveling in time.[21] Russel mentions the same hole in the theory.[19] Both Russell and Bobsheaux mention that, if time travel were involved, the monsters won't need to worry for the kids to get desensitized as it's shown in the movie that they destroy the doors of kids that no longer feel scared, if they are time traveling they will be able to scare the same kid over and over just traveling to the same moment in time.[19][21] Backstory material regarding the history of monsters was presented on the DVD release and in the book The Pixar Treasures, showing the conflict between humans and monsters as dating back to pre-historic times. Monsters are described as a hairy humanoid race known as "Mons" that became enchanted into different shapes and sizes and used their new forms to frighten the humans that persecuted them.
  • According to the theory, Boo is so obsessed with re-encountering Sully that she became a witch and starts traveling in time with the use of magic, yet at the end of Monsters, Inc. and the video game Kingdom Hearts III, it is established that Mike rebuilt Boo’s door and Sully kept visiting her and even bringing her into the monsters' world for playdates.[21] Also as mentioned by Russell, Boo only allegedly travels as back as Medieval Scotland yet, the dinosaurs in The Good Dinosaur are also sentient prompting the theory to update this. In addition, Boo is said to have planted a lot of easter eggs in the movies. But if she planted the easter eggs in Monsters, Inc. and Monsters University, why didn't she reunite with Sulley then?[19]

A critical article in the game-based website Wizard Dojo points out:

When exactly did we get to the point that movies can’t just have these fun little details like cameos and references to a studio or filmmaker’s other works? At what point did these things become literal in people’s eyes? The Pizza Planet truck is a running gag. That's it. It’s there for people to point out and say “Oh look, it’s the Pizza Planet truck.” Nothing more.

The Pixar Theory is so full of holes, logic gaps, and baseless assumptions that the theory’s original author felt the need to justify his stance with paragraph after paragraph of excuses in between just about every thought (maybe he should just admit defeat?). The excuses aren’t any more grounded than the theory itself.[22]

Similar to the above, Mark Russell mentions that the thought that all the Pixar movies are based around a violent apocalypse is very sad because it implies, among other things, that several human characters like the Incredibles, Carl, Russell, Andy and Linguini are all killed at some point.[19] But Russell also acknowledges the virtues of the theory.

No doubt the Pixar Theory will be expanded as more films are released. It is a very adventurous theory, imaginative and thought out, but there are just one too many plotholes. The whole war/tension between humans, animals, and machines never really makes much sense until we reach WALL-E, and Boo being a time travelling witch from the 21st Century, really, really seems a bit of a stretch. Nevertheless, I will be keeping an eye on the Pixar Theory and seeing what ideas are presented to this fascinating theory in the future.[19]

Jon Negroni, however, has confirmed in one of his website's comments[which?] that he is aware of these contradictions, also saying that his final decision was that "easter eggs are just easter eggs and don’t match up to the theory".[citation needed]

See also[edit]

  • Mickey Mouse universe
  • Donald Duck universe


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  3. Grimm, Bob (June 5, ). "Find the Fish". Reno News & Review. Retrieved September 7,
  4. Lussier, Germain (July 17, ). "Theory: All Pixar Movies Exist in the Same Universe". /Film. Retrieved September 7,
  5. Szadkowski, Joseph (June 24, ). "Toy Story 3: The Video Game review". Washington Times. Retrieved September 7,
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  10. "The Pixar Theory, Part 3: 'The Good Dinosaur'". 3 December
  11. "The Pixar Theory, Part 4: Finding Dory". 17 June
  12. Dunn, Gaby (July 12, ). ""Pixar Theory" connects all your favorite movies in 1 universe". The Daily Dot. Retrieved September 7,
  13. Whitney, Erin (July 12, ). "The (Mind-Blowing) Pixar Theory: Are All the Films Connected?". Moviefone. Retrieved September 7,
  14. McFarland, Kevin (July 12, ). "Read This: A grand unified theory connects all Pixar films in one timeline". The A.V. Club. Retrieved September 7,
  15. Davis, Lauren (July 13, ). "How all Pixar films fit into a single universe". io9. Retrieved September 7,
  16. ↑The Pixar Theory – Jon Negroni Accessed on October 7,
  17. "The Pixar Theory Timeline". 15 July
  18. Russell, Mark. "Deconstructing the Pixar Theory". Retrieved 14 November
  19. Hernández, Patricia. "This Theory On How All The Pixar Films Are Connected Is Bonkers". Retrieved 14 November
  20. "The Pixar Theory DEBUNKED". Youtube. Bobsheaux. Retrieved 14 November
  21. "Why "The Pixar Theory" is Really, Really Stupid". Retrieved 14 November

External links[edit]

This article "Pixar universe theory" is from Wikipedia. The list of its authors can be seen in its historical&#;and/or the page Edithistory:Pixar universe theory. Articles copied from Draft Namespace on Wikipedia could be seen on the Draft Namespace of Wikipedia and not main one.

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The Pixar Theory

"Every Pixar movie is connected. I explain how and possibly why.” These are the words that began the detailed essay now known as “The Pixar Theory,” which came out way back in It collected over 10 million views on Jon’s blog alone, and was syndicated on Buzzfeed, Mashable, Huffpost, Entertainment Weekly, and more – generating over million impressions and now tran"Every Pixar movie is connected. I explain how and possibly why.” These are the words that began the detailed essay now known as “The Pixar Theory,” which came out way back in It collected over 10 million views on Jon’s blog alone, and was syndicated on Buzzfeed, Mashable, Huffpost, Entertainment Weekly, and more – generating over million impressions and now translated into a dozen languages. Now, these thoughts and ideas first written by Jon Negroni have been fully realized inside this book, aptly named The Pixar Theory. In this book, you’ll find an analysis of every single Pixar movie to date and how it tells a hidden story lurking behind these classic movies. You’ll learn about how the toys of Toy Story secretly owe their existence to the events of The Incredibles. You’ll learn about what truly happened to the civilization of cars from Cars before the events of WALL-E. And of course, you’ll find out the possible truth for why “Boo” of Monsters Inc. is the most important Pixar character yet. Welcome to the Pixar Theory. Don’t forget to fasten your imaginationmore

Kindle Edition, pages

Published June 3rd by SlimBooks, Inc.


The Hidden Truth Behind Disney - &#;The Pixar Theory&#;

They may seem like hopeful kids movies, but Pixar films may secretly be telling a much darker, apocalyptic story - provided you spot the clues.

Fans of Pixar know that the studio is a big believer in planting easter eggs in each one of their movies, giving viewers tiny nods to other franchises, usually tucked into the background as a subtle joke. But before long, some people started wondering if the easter eggs were actually a sign that there actually existed a Pixar Universe, a world in which every one of their movies was set.

This “Pixar Theory” may have started as an online joke - first by the team at Cracked, then expanded upon by Jon Negroni's comprehensive 'Pixar Theory' - but as more and more fans started filling in the blanks, connecting the movies (with increasingly outlandish theories), the case only got stronger. The darkest twist came when fans realized that if the films are all set in a Pixar Universe, the only real conclusion is a darker, more apocalyptic story than fans ever imagined – and it all begins with Brave.

We’ll break down the strongest points of the theories, and let you decide how convincing the idea of a 'shared Pixar universe' or 'grand narrative' really is in our latest Docu Series, The Hidden Truth Behind Disney: 'The Pixar Theory'.


It wasn’t the first movie Pixar released, but it’s set centuries ahead of the rest, in a Scottish kingdom some time in the Dark Ages. The most important fact isn’t that Brave followed a young girl as its hero, but that it introduced magic into Pixar’s world, bringing everyday objects like brooms to life with personalities of their own (courtesy of a mysterious witch living in the nearby forest). That fact goes a long way in explaining why toys, cars, or even fish can all think and feel like humans in Pixar’s greatest hits, but it’s the witch who does the magic that may hold the key.

We’ll come back around to her as the final piece of the The Pixar Theory, but for now, just remember that this little old lady’s magic relies on some familiar tricks from later films, and is able to make her disappear once Merrida leaves her tiny hut (filled with some interesting wood carvings).

Toy Story

With the assumption that the toys of Toy Story are all alive thanks to magic, the actual theme and plotlines of the trilogy deal with some serious topics. From the first movie, audiences learned that the toys loved their human owner Andy, just as much, if not more than he loved them. But as the movies went on, audiences learned humans aren’t always kind, with Toy Story 2 revealing that the cowgirl Jessie’s owner abandoned her as she grew older, the same way that Lotso’s had in Toy Story 3 (or in his case, had actually just lost). So people aren’t always kind to their magically-alive possessions.

It was the final act of Toy Story 3 that showed toys could be downright evil once brought to life, which sends a clear message for every movie set in the future of Pixar’s universe.

Finding Nemo/Ratatouille

Having shown that toys aren’t as good or pure as their owners might hope, Pixar showed that the same was true with animals. Even the creatures that meant well didn’t exactly see humans in the best light, regularly outsmarting them (demonstrated when Nemo spent some time locked in a dentist's aquarium), giving them orders (the star of Ratatouille, Remy controlling his human chef like a puppet), and showing that human beings were usually afraid and angry towards things they didn’t understand - particularly animals.

And since the Pixar Universe looks an awful lot like ours at this point, their predictions for the future could also apply to our own. If that’s true, then we’re in serious trouble, since the movies set in the future of Pixar’s universe show an even scarier side to humanity. Or at least, they would, if humans were still in the picture at all.


Where other Pixar movies took place in, around, or alongside the world of humans, Cars was the first one to remove them completely, essentially replacing our world and the people in it with cars, and eventually planes, and other vehicles that could think and feel on their own. In our world, smart vehicles with artificial intelligence are already being designed, with experts warning that a truly advanced A.I. might not be as friendly as we would hope – just like the animals, insects, and toys of Pixar’s movies can be.

But it’s not like intelligent cars would be bad enough to get rid of humans, or turn on eachother like Pixar’s animals and toys did before them, would they? Cars offers a chilling answer, since most of the sports, infrastructure and overall world of the cars is obviously the same one built by humans, before cars and machines could drive themselves, making human beings irrelevant.

Even if toys and animals became smarter than humans realized, leading to a rise of machines who felt the same way, that still doesn’t answer the question: where did all of Pixar’s people GO?


They went out into space, that’s where. In the future of Wall-E, the world is completely destroyed, turned brown and lifeless by pollution and smog. But the humans didn’t find anything better in deep space, turning into lifeless, bored couch potatoes who only do what the intelligent machines around them tell them to do. Eventually, fans looked at Cars and wondered: did people leave Earth because it was dying from pollution, or did they just head into space following the same robotic orders, and the planet wound up polluted long after. Like, from the kind of pollution that would be caused by billions of cars taking over the planet?

The theory is obviously using plenty of imagination, claiming that intelligent cars got sick of people, just like some toys and animals were already starting to in earlier movies. But with Wall- E the only machine left working on Earth, the plan backfired. The cars died off, leaving Earth ready for humans to return.

Here’s where the theory takes it’s darkest turn, claiming Wall-E’s happy ending was just an illusion. By returning to a dead planet without their robotic leaders telling them what to do, humanity went extinct – and their machines along with them. Leaving the door open for a brand new type of lifeform to take over…

Monsters, Inc.

That’s right, the monsters rise up to take humanity’s place, building their own society from the rubble. A society that needed power on a dried up planet. Apparently, the fan theory claims, some of the toys that weren’t destroyed – like the ones collected by Wall-E – gave up their secrets, telling the monsters about the humans who helped them, cared for them, or were terrified of them. Seeing a solution to their energy problems, the Monsters realized that scaring those same children could power their city. There was one problem, though: they were already extinct.

But you know those doors the monsters use to scare human kids? What if they weren’t just doors in space, but time? And what if the little girl of the movie, Boo, wasn’t ever going to give up her search for the monster that lived in her closet? Since we know magic exists in the Pixar Universe, it’s possible that Boo grew up to use it herself, hopping from door to door, and time to time, trying to find Sully and hear the real secrets about the Monster world.

It’s these trips, the fans claim, which caused all kinds of artifacts and references to pop up across the movies set in different places and times. Boo left them behind as she traveled, eventually finding her way back to one place long, long before the world we know took shape.


Finally, we return to the magical old woman in the woods, eager to turn Merrida’s mother into a massive, hairy, monstrous bear to bring them closer together. The same old witch who has carved pictures of the monster Sully, and the Pizza Planet truck from the modern day Pixar world sitting around her hut. The clues all add up to Boo, after decades of time-jumping landed her in the Dark Ages, where she used her magic from the future to enchant everyday objects and animals – introducing magic to the Pixar Universe, and completing the entire loop.


It’s anything but simple, and some Pixar fans might think it’s more of a waste of time than a use of imagination. But The Pixar Theory wins more believers every year, as more and more movies from the studio seem to back it up – or add a new twist of their own.

What do you think of the idea? Are there any clues that are even harder to ignore, or details you think fans are ignoring to keep their theory intact? Let us know in the comments, and remember to subscribe to our channel for more videos like this one!


Squid Game: Jun-ho Is Still Alive - Theory Explained

About The Author
Andrew Dyce ( Articles Published)

Screen Rant Editor Andrew Dyce was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. Despite calling the vast nothingness of the Canadian prairies home (or perhaps because of it) film and television have been a passion since birth. As a graduate of the University of Manitoba with a degree in English Literature, Andrew has grown to appreciate the story and writing behind everything from blockbuster comic book movies to schlocky B-movie action.

More From Andrew Dyce

Pixar theory 2016 the

Although in my last blog post, I said I was going to go into theories about the Miyazaki movies, I would first like to take a detour and explain the Pixar Theory. Seeing as many of the people reading this blog would likely not have watched any of the Ghibli movies, I want to take this time to explain a similar theory that involves more popular American movies that will hopefully help you understand the Miyazaki movies.

So, what is the Pixar Theory?

An image featuring the main characters of a few of the Pixar movies.

An image featuring the main characters of a few of the Pixar movies.

In short, the Pixar Theory is a fan theory that all Pixar movies are from the same timeline. Although this claim hasn&#;t been confirmed by Pixar, fans have found a substantial amount of evidence that could be used to support their ideas. The Pixar Theory basically states that the timeline that these movies are in illustrate the changing relations between three basic races: humans, animals, and robots.


The Beginning: Brave

An image of a tapestry showing the bond between Merida and her mother as a bear.

An image of a tapestry showing the bond between Merida and her mother as a bear.

At the start of this epic timeline is the movie Brave. This movie was released in , but the events in the movie are estimated to have taken place in the fourteenth or fifteenth century. If you haven&#;t seen it, the movie focuses on the life of the Scottish princess, Merida. After getting frustrated with her mother, Merida runs off and finds an old, bear-obsessed witch who instills magic in wood. This witch frequently uses doors to teleport places and transform her surroundings. Merida convinces the witch to help her change her mother&#;s mind, but the witch ends up turning her mother into a bear. There was one other instance in which the witch turned someone into a bear but they were never able to turn back. Despite this, at the end of the movie, Merida and her mother make amends and her mother turns back into a human.

This movie shows the beginnings of the relations between humans, animals, and magic.

Evolution of Mankind: The Incredibles

Syndrome (right) and his Omnidroid (left).

Syndrome (right) and his Omnidroid (left).

The Incredibles is the second movie on the Pixar timeline. It is said to have taken place from the s to the s and features a family of five that has incredible super powers, but they aren&#;t the only ones. They use their powers to fight against evil, and in particular, against Syndrome who creates robots who are trained to seek out and destroy anyone with superpowers. It is theorized that between the time that went unexplained between Brave and The Incredibles, humans were rapidly evolving and developing their magic until they had superpowers. However, because of Syndromes machines, the numbers of people with these special genetic mutations were decreasing rapidly and, in essence, mankind was devolving. At the end of the movie, although Syndrome is defeated, his killer robot, the Omindroid, was lost, but still functioning.

Enter the robots.

Evolution of Robots: Toy Story

An image of Lotso displaying his hatred for humans.

An image of Lotso displaying his hatred for humans.

Toy Story,Toy Story 2, and Toy Story 3 take their places here in the timeline, at around In the first Toy Story movie, the ideas that toys were able to feed off of human emotion was introduced. The Pixar Theory suggests that the Omnidroid, which was considered so intelligent that it turned against its own maker, spent its time in the wilderness creating more robots and essentially allowing them to evolve. As the robots grew more and more advanced, they created toys that were able to understand human emotion, but could only live if they brought joy to children. However, as humans began to take their toys for granted, the toys became independent and fed off their own resentment for humans (as was seen in Lotso the bear and Jessie who hated her owner for abandoning her).

Robots begin to rebel.


Evolution of Animals: Finding Nemo and Ratatouille

Dory talking whale.

Dory talking whale.

While humans and robots have been evolving, animals have also been quickly making progress. In Finding Nemo, the animals show incredible communicative skills, with Dory being able to talk to whales. Additionally, Nemo&#;s dad and Dory were able to travel across the ocean alone. They showed unbelievable navigational and survival skills that wouldn&#;t have been found in more primitive species of these fish. Additionally, it is found out that humans have been experimenting on animals for a long time. It is said that Dory was experimented on, which is why she is so forgetful. To make matters worse, humans had been polluting their home for years, adding growing resentment towards the humans.

The mouse in Ratatouille also displays incredibly human traits, including the ability to cook better than professional chefs. His vast intelligence shows just how much evolution really affected the animals. However, not all animals were affected by the supermutations that the fish in Finding Nemo and Remy were able to attain. Lastly, the rat clans featured in Ratatouille, like the other animals, show intense hatred and fear of humans.

So when does the rebellion start?

The Introduction of By &#;N&#; Large: Up

Dug introducing himself briefly before getting distracted by a squirrel.

Dug introducing himself briefly before getting distracted by a squirrel.

In the beginning of the movie Up, Carl is forced out of his house by a corporation called By &#;N&#; Large. Keep this name in mind; it will come up a lot later. The main point that you need to know about this movie, however, is that Carl meets a dog named Dug that can communicate with him through the help of a translator created by Charles Muntz. During his adventure, Carl finds that animals can effectively communicate with each other, and with the help of technology, they can even communicate with humans. Through their interactions, Carl discovers the resentment that animals harbor towards humans because of the mass pollution they caused. It is also discovered that Muntz raised an army of dogs that would later rebel against humans.

Who do you think won that confrontation?

The Disappearance of Mankind: Cars

Tow Mater in front of the deserted Earth.

Tow Mater in front of the deserted Earth.

If you said that animals won the confrontation, you would almost be correct. Fed up with being underestimated, experimented on, and forced out of their homes, the animals rebelled against and fought back against the humans. The animals would have eradicated the humans out of sheer hatred, but the machines that had kept in hiding fought alongside the humans and held the animals back. However, the effects of the humans&#; pollution was so devastating that the Earth had become almost entirely desolate, as seen in the first Cars movie. The humans that survived had to be sent to a separate planet called Axiom in order to keep them alive and the machines, or the cars, were left on Earth to populate and manage it.

Now, here&#;s the real kicker: the leading oil company at the time that contributed to the pollution of the Earth was called Allinol. If that name sounds familiar, well, you&#;d be right. Allinol, better known to fans as &#;all in all&#;, is owned by By &#;N&#; Large. It is theorized that a machine that became extremely intelligent became the head of BnL and wanted to pollute the Earth to destruction.

A Reversal: Wall-E

Wall-E trying to interact with humans who are bombarded with pleasure.

Wall-E trying to interact with humans who are bombarded with pleasure.

So now that we know what&#;s going on down on Earth, what&#;s the deal with Axiom? For those of you who have watched Wall-E, you would know that humans are being treated like gods. The machines, formerly known as the toys who had so loved the humans, became so fearful of losing the humans that they wanted to preserve their species and pay them back for the good memories they had. Putting aside the resentment they developed, the robots took care of the humans in the only way they knew how: providing everything the humans could ever want or need. Obesity rates sky-rocketed as the humans were pampered and put into a constant state of euphoria. The robots wanted to shower the humans with happiness because, well, when they were toys, they would die without it. At the end of the movie, Wall-E is seen planting a seed on Earth that would grow to become the tree that started life on Earth again.

Repopulation of the Earth: A Bug&#;s Life

Flick entering the city created by the bugs.

Flick entering the city created by the bugs.

Despite the fact that the Earth became desolate, not every animal species was eradicated. Many bugs actually survived the harsh conditions and continued to evolve. The bugs became more and more human-like, building cities, having families, creating civilizations. The lifespan of the bugs grows beyond belief, even to over 90 years old. The Earth thrives so well that humans begin to inhabit it again, but this doesn&#;t stop the rapid evolution of animals.

The End?: Monsters, Inc.

A side by side comparison of Boo and the witch from Brave.

A side by side comparison of Boo and the witch from Brave.

The animals were said to have evolved and mutated into incredibly intelligent monsters that were able to use magic on doors to travel back in time to when the Earth was more populated to gather screams from children. On one of their missions, a little girl named Boo discovers the monsters&#; time period and becomes extremely attached to one monster named  Sullivan. Although in the beginning, she says that he is a &#;kitty&#;, it is theorized that as she grew older, she realized that Sullivan looked more like a bear than any other earthly animal and spends the rest of her life taking the magic she learned about from the monster world to travel through time periods by means of doors to find her long lost friend, Sullivan. Who else travels through doors and is obsessed with bears? The witch from Brave.


So now that we&#;ve come full-circle back to Brave, we&#;ve finally finished our adventure exploring the Pixar Theory. I know this was such a long post, but I really do hope it was worth the read. In the next blog post, I would like to finally jump right into the Miyazaki Theory and make comparisons to the Pixar Theory.


If you want to read more about the Pixar Theory, check out this cool website.

If you don&#;t want to read all about it, watch this super cool video.




The Pixar Theory!!

The Pixar Theory: How every Pixar animated movie is connected.

   Believe it or not, there is reason to think that all 24 Pixar movies are connected. Like the MCU, or Marvel Cinematic Universe, the Pixar Universe connects all Pixar movies in a very long convoluted timeline. 

   This “Pixar Theory&#; was developed back in by Jon Negroni, who saw the connections between the first 14 movies. Ever since the theory has evolved tremendously. The best way to describe the theory is by making a timeline, explaining the evolution of humans, animals, artificial intelligence and monsters. So let&#;s get right into it. Spoilers ahead for every Pixar movie.

The Good Dinosaur () 

   This timeline starts off in the dino ages, in an alternate history when the meteor that killed the dinosaurs never hit the Earth. This leads to the dinosaurs advancing to a close-to-human level, which foreshadows the abilities of animals for the future. So keep that in mind. 


   Next up, we then skip till millions of years after &#;The Good Dinosaur&#; in medieval Scotland. When Princess Merida wants to change her fate, she follows the  Will O&#; the Wisps. They lead her into a cabin in the woods, owned by a witch. In the said cabin, many carvings are seen of bears, one in particular looks like Sully from &#;Monsters Inc.&#; Pay attention to that detail, it will come in handy later. 

The Incredibles() and Incredibles 2 ()

   About a thousand or so years later, we jump into the s, the age of Superheroes. What is important here is the development of AI(Artificial Intelligence) created by Syndrome. We also see the first mention of Buy-In-Large or BML, a super-corporation. They will be making many appearances throughout the Pixar Theory. 

Toy Story() and Toy Story 2 ()

   Decades after the Incredibles 2, the first two &#;Toy Story&#; movies show how children&#;s toys can come to life. It is also shown that in order to come alive, toys and other objects are powered by human memories. For example, in &#;Toy Story 2&#; when the penguin, Wheezy, is being forgotten by Andy, he becomes very slow and squeaky. Toys that do not come to life are toys not remembered by any humans. 

In addition, many mentions of BNL are seen, demonstrating how much this corporation is growing. 

Finding Nemo () and Finding Dory ()

   These two movies happen right after &#;Toy Story&#; and its first sequel. These films show how intelligent animals, such as fish, have become. They seem to be on a similar intelligence level as the toys. The fish even have their own mini-society. After her adventure in &#;Finding Dory&#;, Dory comes to the conclusion the closer in proximity to humans fish are, the smarter they can become. This is very similar to the theory that toys only come to life because of human memories. 

Ratatouille ()

   A couple of years after &#;Finding Dory,&#; we take a trip to France. This film basically supports Dory&#;s conclusion, as a rat named Remy, who is always near humans, becomes very intelligent. Even to the point where he can cook just like a human.  

Toy Story 3 () and Toy Story 4 ()

   &#;Toy Story 3&#; takes place 11 years after the first sequel. Many details and easter eggs from other Pixar movies are seen in this movie. This includes Darla from &#;Finding Nemo&#;, a postcard to Andy from Carl from &#;Up&#; and Boo from &#;Monsters Inc.&#; Most importantly, Buzz is powered by BNL batteries, connecting the toys and the corporation. In &#;Toy Story 4,&#; many questions about how toys come to life are answered. When a piece of trash is given eyes and is played with by Bonnie, he comes to life. This cements the theory that toys are alive because of the presence of humans. 

Up ()

   &#;Up&#; is about an old man named Carl trying to fulfill his and his dead wife&#;s dream of living in Paradise falls, only to learn that life with her was an adventure all along. This film shows the beginning of pollution on Earth, which will soon drive animals to turn against humans, only for machines to take over the world, but more on that later. The intelligence of the talking dogs signifies two things. One, that animals are becoming more advanced. Two, technology is growing and BNL is becoming stronger and stronger. 

Inside Out ()

   Set in the modern-day, &#;Inside Out&#; explores the concept of emotions in everyone&#;s head. The point of this movie is to show the power of memory and how it can affect one&#;s emotions. There is a chance that Riley&#;s imaginary friend, Bing Bong, is based on Riley&#;s monster, creating a connection to &#;Monsters Inc.&#; 

Coco ()

   Also set in the modern-day, &#;Coco&#; still explores the power of memory in the PCU(Pixar Cinematic Universe). The basic concept is when memory is forgotten, they disappear. This was seen in &#;Inside Out&#; with the character Bing Bong. The main focus of &#;Coco&#; is the world of the dead. When someone dies, they will re-awake in the world of the dead to live another life.  So in this case, if one can not be remembered in the living world, one would disappear in the &#;Land of the Dead. 

Soul ()

   Once again being set in the modern-day, &#;Soul&#; builds the concept of life before life. How, before people are born, they are shapeless blobs until they are allowed to have a life on Earth. Life is not limited to humans though, it can be any living thing. This explains why certain animals, toys and cars can be very intelligent and human-like. 

Cars (), Cars 2 () and Cars 3 ()

   Now, skip a century to the future. The animals rebelled against humans but both went extinct due to pollution and now the world is ruled by cars. All caught up? Good. Now is when Buy-In-Large is very very important. All the cars, planes and machines are powered by BNL and AI technology developed by Syndrome. The machines are powered by fuel, but are still organic, as we can see a car can die. There is also mention of craps in &#;Cars 3&#; so there are still some non-machines living on Earth. 

Wall-E ()

   Wall-E takes place in , years after all the humans left on a spaceship due to Earth being too polluted to live on. Before the humans left, BNL ruled the entire world during the 21st century but after they polluted Earth so badly, they moved all humans on the &#;Axium&#; to live peacefully in space. The &#;Axium&#; is completely controlled by machines and over the span of years, humans have become nothing but useless blobs being controlled by machines. With the help of Wall-E, the humans venture back to Earth, which is now showing signs of life once again. 

A Bug’s Life ()

   &#;A Bugs Life&#; occurs soon after the humans have returned at the end of &#;Wall-E.&#; As shown by a roach in &#;Wall-E&#;, bugs and insects survived the mass pollution, explaining why they do not fear humans. 

Onward ()

   Although it may seem like &#;Onward&#; may not fit the &#;Pixar Theory&#;, due to magical spells and creatures being a prominent plot point, not to fear.The theory goes that this film does not occur on Earth. Remember, this is the Pixar universe, world. 

Monsters University () and Monsters Inc ()

   At long last, we have made it to the end of the Pixar timeline, but hold on as these last couple of movies are very crucial to the Pixar Theory. Taking place in the year , the Earth is now ruled by monsters, who have evolved from the humans in &#;Wall-E&#; due to chemicals in the air. We are introduced to the concept of monsters traveling through doors to scare children, as their screams power the city. This for the final time supports the theory that human memories power everything. The big question is, how are the monsters scaring human children if all the humans are dead? Easy, they are time traveling. Each door is a portal to a time and place on Earth. In &#;Monsters Inc&#;, Sully befriends a little girl, who he named &#;Boo&#;. Now, the big twist of the Pixar Theory is that Boo is actually the witch from, you guessed it, &#;Brave&#;. The theory goes that after meeting Sully, Boo became obsessed with trying to find him again. So she spent her life trying to discover the magic behind the doors. That is why in &#;Brave&#; the witch has a magic door and a carving of Sully(told you that would be important). 

   So there it is. The complete up-to-date Pixar Theory. Although it may be long and sometimes confusing, it is great to think about. This just excellently shows the brilliant storytelling by Pixar Studios. 


Now discussing:

Want even more?

finding dory pixar theory

Don’t cry mommy…don’t cry.

Here’s the deal. A few years ago, I proposed a theory that makes the case for how and why every Pixar movie from Toy Story to WALL-E exists in a shared universe with a single, overarching narrative. The case I make is fueled by easter eggs, cameos, story themes, and other clues that make up what I call The Pixar Theory (link above).

Since I wrote the original theory and turned it into a book, I’ve also added “chapters” that talk about Inside Out and The Good Dinosaur, just last year. And now we’ve come to the release, Finding Dory.

I’ll give you the normal rundown below, but first a tease. Would you believe me if I told you that the Toy Story movies have an incredibly strong connection with this movie? Well, we’ll get to that.


finding dory pixar theory

It took Pixar 13 years, but they finally made a sequel to one of their most beloved films, Finding Nemo. In that movie, a clown fish named Marlin crosses the ocean in search of his son, and he’s aided by the quirky and forgetful blue tang, Dory.

The sequel kicks off a year later, when Dory suddenly remembers a clue related to her family, whom she lost as a very young child—er—fish. So Marlin and Nemo help Dory cross the ocean once again to find them, only this time, they have to brave the horrors outside of the ocean, in a marine institute that rehabilitates fish and has its own aquarium exhibits.

First, let’s talk briefly about how Finding Nemo fits into the theory, because for obvious reasons, that will inform a lot of what we can uncover with the sequel.


This was actually one of the shortest chapters of the book, mostly because the connections in Finding Nemo are very speculative and work to enhance other animal-centric films like Ratatouille. Interestingly, I do speak in length about Dory in that chapter, because she is a character who represents the mysterious intelligence animals in Pixar movies seem to possess, leading all the way to movies like Monsters Inc., which imagines a world where animals run the world as monsters.

Dory has very unique abilities that other fish like her simply don’t possess. She can read, for one thing, and “speak whale.” We’ll get to why that really is, later, because Finding Dory sheds plenty of light on where this all comes from.

finding dory pixar theory

I also speak on how Finding Nemo goes out of its way to create animosity between the fish of the ocean and the humans, paving the way for an increasingly connected community of animals who will do whatever it takes to get away from wherever the humans are. Humans steal Nemo and threaten his life, keep the Tank Gang imprisoned in the dentist’s office, and then capture Dory in a fishing net. It’s proven in the movie that humans are actually the biggest threat to creatures of the ocean.

But in the end, the fish rally against humans once and for all, thanks in no small part to Nemo’s leadership when he convinces a horde of them to break the human’s fishing net so they can escape.


Warning: spoilers for Finding Dory from here on out. Be sure to watch the movie before going any further unless you want to be spoiled.

Humans are still terrible in the story of Finding Dory, but not always directly. True, they capture Dory almost as soon as she reaches the kelp forest next to the marine institute. But Dory herself doesn’t seem to fear or hate them. She, just like most other characters, is pretty indifferent to the humans.

finding dory pixar theory

Hank the octopus, on the other hand, is very antagonistic toward the marine institute workers, always escaping and finding ways to avoid them at all costs. This is made even clearer when his worst nightmare is realized at the “touch pool,” where children descend their fingers upon the fish to the tune of a horror movie.

Imagine the scene from Toy Story 3 when the toys first encounter the caterpillar room. All of the savvy toys are hiding because they know children are coming to make their lives a living riptide. Well, that’s basically what happens here, and this fear of humans isn’t just comic relief. It’s kind of terrifying, and it’s even a little entertaining considering a Toy Story connection coming later…

It’s no wonder that by the end of the movie, all of the fish from the institute hark to the words of Sigourney Weaver and “release” themselves into the ocean. To them, freeing themselves of humans is their version of a happy ending.


So what makes Dory so “special,” and just what in the ocean does that have to do with the Pixar Theory? Well, don’t forget that the growing intelligence of animals in movies like RatatouilleUpA Bug’s Life, and even The Good Dinosaur all lead up to the inevitable reality where oversized animals who look like monsters solely inhabit the future world devoid of humans (only for them to go back in time to harvest the energy-filled screams of children in order to sustain their world further because, and you guessed it, humans are batteries).

finding dory pixar theory

Like in Inside Out, Pixar hits us over the head with the idea that humans give off an energy that sparks life into everyday objects like toys, cars, and even our own emotions. So how did Dory become the way she is?

It’s revealed in Finding Dory that she was born in captivity. So she grew up constantly surrounded by humans and signs from the exhibits that she&#;s able to remember throughout the film, explaining how she was able to learn to read. Peach the starfish from Finding Nemo is another fish who has the rare ability to read, and even she explains that she was brought to the tank from eBay.

The idea is that when animals become entrenched in human fixtures and attention, they are able to expand their personalities and capabilities. Though Dory suffers from a very serious disability with short-term memory loss, she’s able to cope by forming connections in a very human way. This explains why fish are so quick to help her with whatever problem she&#;s facing, no questions asked.

We see the same sort of thing with Remy from Ratatouille, who becomes the greatest chef in France only after his experiences in the human world. Simply put, humans and animals have a lot to gain and learn from each other.


finding dory pixar theory

Nope. There’s also a subtle but unforgettable moment in the movie that hints a connection with Toy Story. Here it goes.

About halfway through the movie, Marlin and Nemo find themselves in a fish tank outside of a gift shop, and there’s a single, plastic fish toy moving around them. It prods Marlin over and over again, and then eventually when they’re trying to figure a way out, they notice that the fish is tapping the glass all of a sudden pointing directly at the exact path they need to take in order to escape (a stream of geysers that will carry them over to the tide pool).

The idea is that the toy fish is, you guessed it, alive, and it’s trying to help Nemo and Marlin without revealing itself because it has to play dead with so many people around watching them. This is a great connection to the relationship we see in Toy Story 2 between Woody and Buster, who form a bond and friendship together. Here, the toy just seems anxious to show Marlin and Nemo exactly what they need to do so they can find their friend.

In other words, Pixar is amazing.


finding dory pixar theory

As always, there are ample easter eggs and references to other movies to find throughout, including the A callout that shows up toward the end of the movie on a license plate (again, just like Toy Story).

Also, Sigourney Weaver&#;s voice is heard throughout the marine park announcing the exhibits. This will be familiar to fans of Andrew Stanton&#;s other Pixar movie, WALL-E, which also features Weaver&#;s voice as the sound of a computer on the Axiom. Makes sense that in the Pixar universe, Sigourney Weaver&#;s voice is the most trusted when it comes to soothing, computer-controlled announcements.

Remember Darla from Finding Nemo? You can see the same photo of her holding the dead fish in the marine institute that her uncle has all the way in Australia. This means the marine institute has a clear connection to the P. Sherman, who also loves to work by the sea. It could even mean that in the one year since losing all of his fish in the tank, he decided to devote his life to studying aquatic life in California, a dream somewhat preluded in the fact that he scuba dived far into the ocean just to take photos, eventually leading to him taking Nemo.

finding dory pixar theory

And here&#;s a spookier reference that hints the rise of BnL, the corporation that will eventually burn all the trash into toxic air. In the picture below (bottom right), you can spot a WALL-E calendar, referencing the robots that will one day (try) to clean the Earth.

It&#;s telling that in a movie where there is a ton of garbage piling up in the water just outside the marine institute, robots as advanced as WALL-E are already being prototyped.

finding dory pixar theory

The Luxo Ball and Pizza Planet truck make their scheduled appearances, as well. You can see the Luxo Ball in the clutter of toys in the Kid Zone, and the Pizza Planet truck is one of the underwater vehicles found during the squid scene.

Be sure to add what you find in your own viewings via the comments.

Another quick thing, though, is that for whatever reason, Pixar seems to really hate birds unless they’re in a short like with Piper, or they’re named Nigel. Like the seagulls from Finding Nemo and the instinctual predator bird from A Bug’s Life, there are half-brained birds all over the place in Finding Dory, including one named Becky who will still find a way to capture your heart, I guess.


pixar theory

Sadly, it will be a year before we get any new Pixar movies, with Cars 3 set to release June 16, Though a lot of people may not be very excited about yet another Cars sequel, they can still take solace in knowing that the studio is releasing Coco, an original non-sequel coming out that same year in November, based on the Mexican holiday Día de Muertos.

The film has already begun animation as of April, and the premise follows a year-old boy named Miguel who tries to uncover a &#;generations-old&#; mystery. The current synopsis is:

“Coco is the celebration of a lifetime, where the discovery of a generations-old mystery leads to a most extraordinary and surprising family reunion.”

Also, we have Toy Story 4 and Incredibles 2 to look forward to in the next few years, including a rumored slate of about four non-sequels Pixar is working on that are due to come out over the next decade.

All of these movies are months and years away, so until they release, I&#;ll be here conspiring.

  • First, be sure to check out the book, The Pixar Theory, available on paperback and ebook via Kindle, Barnes and Noble, iBooks, or just a PDF. This will cover the entire theory and every movie in the Pixar universe, updated from the blog post.
  • Parts 2 and 3 of the The Pixar Theory cover the latest movies that have come out since the book was published. So you can check out Part 2, Inside Out, as well as Part 3, The Good Dinosaur via the links.
  • Want to talk about all of this stuff with tons of other Pixar Detectives? You can start all of the conversations you want in the comments for this post, or join the ongoing discussions in the original blog post, here.
  • Last but hopefully not least, you can read my free Pixar Theory serial novel, The Pixar Detective, which was completed last spring. It tells a new story that shows off the grand narrative of all the Pixar movies with original characters, familiar faces, and a mystery that ties them all together.

Thanks for reading this. To get updates on my theories, books, and giveaways, join my mailing list.

Or just say hey on Twitter: @JonNegroni

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