In 2010, two aspiring filmmakers wanted to get Pixar's attention. But rather than create their own animated vision to get noticed, they decided to re-make one of the studio's biggest hits: "Toy Story." In live action.
The results, the "Live Action Toy Story" project, went live on Jan. 12 and has since racked up 1.5 million views on YouTube. It's a shot-for-shot remake of the animated classic, made with children's voices and hands and wires manipulating the toys.
As reported in the East Valley Tribune, Jonason Pauley (19) and Jesse Perrotta (21) are huge fans of Disney-Pixar's works, and just wanted a chance to visit the studio where their heroes work.
"(Pixar) doesn't let people in unless you've done anything," said Pauley. "But I'm pretty confident."
According to the article, the pair used two rooms in Pauley's parents' Northern California home as Andy and Sid's rooms, where they did most of the filming, and a local pizzeria and arcade served as Pizza Planet. They roped in about 150 friends and family for the project, spending about $1,000 to get it all done. One of the biggest challenges? Finding a time when the borrowed dog, Spud, and the child actors were all available.
This isn't the team's first stab at a "Toy Story" remake -- their live-action version of the end scene in "Toy Story 3" has already been seen on YouTube more than 2.5 million times.
And while Pixar has confirmed they've received the tribute, they won't comment as of yet on what will happen next. That said, a Pixar filmmaker, Lee Unkrich (who edited the original film, co-directed and edited the sequel and directed the third installment), has been in touch with the filmmakers on Twitter, offering support.
"We have so much respect for Pixar, we don't want to do anything without their consent," Perrotta the Tribune. "All I really wish is that our fans get to see it someday. I just want everybody to see this movie one way or another."