TOY STORY 4
Toy Story 4 reunites Woody with his long-lost friend Bo Peep, who was noticeably absent from the last film. After years of being on her own, Bo’s adventurous spirit and life on the road have made her someone very different from the person Woody remembers. Toy Story 4 director Josh Cooley and producers Jonas Rivera and Mark Nielsen talk about how they made sure Bo Peep represented the modern female movie lead.
TOY STORY 4 | TEAM BO
At a recent press event, the director and producers of Toy Story 4 were asked how they made sure Bo Peep, as the lead female character, kept her own agency and if they consulted with the women on the team about it. Producer Mark Nielsen said, “Yeah, so like you said, Team Bo was what we called, that was kind of a group within the team. It was folks from story and from art and from animation and cloth that really rallied around the idea of just keeping Bo as a really special and unique standout character that didn’t kind of fall into tropes or anything that you typically see in an action film.”
A DIFFERENT WORLDVIEW
Nielsen continued, “It was important to us, very important to us, that Bo had a different worldview than Woody. And you said romantic comedy, her pretty early on in our process, we sort of decided to kind of steer away from that and back toward more of an adventure. To have a lot of humor in it, but like you said, more along the lines of Indiana Jones type of film and away from romantic comedy. But we’re really happy with the way that the Bo Woody relationship landed.”
A FLAG ON THE FIELD
Producer Jonas Rivera then said, “I’ll only add that, because you asked, did we get feedback from that group? The answer is, yes, we did [LAUGHTER]. They would unflinchingly say, ‘She wouldn’t hold herself that way.’ Or, ‘That line is a little off.’ And even Annie Potts would help steer it.” Director Josh Cooley added, “It was great. I loved it.” Rivera continued, “We had a good sense of– And [Josh] would say, ‘This is the shape of the scene,’ and how we want to dramatize it. But that that group would throw a flag on the field if they felt that it was going one way or the other. Into submitting to Woody’s point of view and so forth.”
BO PEEP’S ANNIE POTTS
Nielsen finished, “We got to show the film to Annie Potts [the actor who voiced Bo Peep] recently and she just, her reaction to seeing Bo was just, was really strong, and she absolutely was so happy with the way that this character turned out in the way that Bo’s represented in the film.”
TOY STORY 4 hits U.S. theaters June 21, 2019.