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30 Terrifying Facts About Monsters Inc.

Mathew Burke

“Roz, my tender, oozing blossom, you’re looking fabulous today. Is that a new haircut?” ­– Monsters Inc.

It’s time to put on your best scary face, sit back and enjoy these boo-tastic facts about one of Pixar’s greats, Monsters Inc.


Monsters Inc. Facts

30. What was in that sandwich?

Apparently the genius Pixar writers conceived the basic ideas for Monsters Inc., A Bug’s Life, Finding Nemo and Wall-E ALL during a lunch meeting in 1994. What were those people eating?

29. Dropped the Bill

Bill Murray was initially offered the part of James Sullivan (Sully) and even tested for it. Alas, the producers were unable to get in touch with the actor after the test and the part was given to John Goodman.

28. We go way back

This is the fourth film John Goodman and Steve Buscemi have done together but only the first movie the two have collaborated on that was not directed or produced by the Coen Brothers.

27. Monsters at Hogwarts

The animated feature had a special trailer made to show before Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, which involved Mike and Sulley playing charades with the answer being “Harry Potter”.

26. Boo!

Boo was originally planned as a six-year-old, but was changed to a toddler to ensure she would follow Sulley around.

25. Muppets involvement

Frank Oz, best known for his work as a Muppet puppeteer and voice of Yoda, came up with the name for one of the leading characters in the film – Mike Wazowski.

24. The director’s barbershop

Pete’s Barber Shop in Monsters Inc. is named after Pete Docter, the director of the film.

23. All in the details

Pixar animators don’t cut corners. Sulley’s luscious coat contains precisely 2,230,413 individual strands of hair so apparently they also don’t cut hair. Unless you go to Pete’s.

22. Rome wasn’t built in a day

Because Sulley had so much hair and each strand had to be animated, it took about 12 hours to render a single frame with the character in it.

21. Oscar attention

After 16 nominations, Randy Newman finally won an Academy Award for the Monsters Inc. song “If I Didn’t Have You”.

20. To infinity and beyond!

There are several allusions to Toy Story in Monsters Inc., like the toys scattered over Boo’s room and, when Randall is practicing camouflage, one of the images given to him is the wallpaper from Andy’s room.

19. Boo who?

We probably all fell in love with the name Boo, but the character’s real name is actually Mary. She is named after the actress who played her, Mary Gibbs.

18. Don’t we all

The song Boo sings while in the washroom is completely made up. The filmmakers didn’t want to have any copyright issues, so they told Gibbs to just make up the song in gibberish and she did.

Monsters Inc. FactsMonsters Inc. ‎Walt Disney Pictures

17. Oops

This was the last Pixar film to have a blooper reel in the end-credits.

16. If you can’t beat ’em…

Mary Gibbs, who played Boo, was very young during the making of the film and it was difficult to get to stand still in the recording studio. So, the crew followed her around with a microphone and recorded what she was saying, later piecing it all together for the movie.

15. Can’t be too careful

The closing credits of Monsters Inc. state that no monsters were harmed in the making of the film.

14. Because people are easily distracted

Initially, the animators pondered the idea of giving Sulley tentacles. They decided against it because they didn’t want the audience to focus on the wiggly parts instead of the character’s face.

13. Let it go

Monsters Inc. was Pixar’s highest grossing animated film but the title now belongs to Frozen.

12. Then who?

In the original draft of the script, Sulley was a janitor and Mike’s character did not exist at all.

11. Teamwork

In an unusual move for animated features, John Goodman and Billy Crystal recorded their lines together. Most of the time, actors record their lines alone.

10. Benefits

The names on the scoreboard for the scaring contest actually belong to Pixar staff.

9. Growth spurt

When Sulley says his goodbye to Boo and closes the closet door, she jumps out of the bed and by the time she reaches the door she is 7% taller – this was done by animators because Boo would be too short otherwise.

8. New perspectives

This was the first Pixar project to not be directed by John Lasseter.

7. I’ve made a HUGE mistake

The scene where Sulley thinks Boo is going to be crushed by a trash compactor is a direct reference to Chuck Jones’ short Feed the Kitty.

6. Roz

Bob Peterson, the film’s story supervisor, temporarily lended his vocals for Roz (the sluggish secretary) until they could find a replacement. His performance was so well received, that it made it in the final cut of the movie.

5. It’s the Wars

A news leak revealed that the teaser for Star Wars: Episode II would be played before Monsters Inc. in the movie theatres, so hundreds of fans bought tickets to the Pixar feature just to see the trailer – many leaving right after.

4. Comfort is priceless

Sulley’s armchair in his apartment has a hole in the back for so he doesn’t crush his tail.

3. Boomhauer

Boo speaks in absolute gibberish for the entire movie, but she can pronounce “Mike Wazowki” perfectly.

2. Should be fine

The ingredient list on the cereal Sulley feeds to Boo contains the following: Tentacles (includes suckers), sugar pods, gelatin, artificial flavor, artificial color (Yellow 53 & 54, Red 400, Blue 21, Plaid 16, Puce 30), salt, seawater, naturally occurring mercury, barium, sulfuric acid, lead, bile, blood, sweat, tears, zinc oxide, vitamins D & F, anemone, brine shrimp, coral, plankton, deadly pufferfish, depleted uranium (to preserve freshness).

Monsters Inc. FactsMonsters Inc. ‎Walt Disney Pictures

1. We know who would be perfect for the role

Monsters Inc. director Pete Docter revealed that the original idea involved an older man, who becomes haunted by monsters he drew as a child. Each monster would represent a different fear that the lead character has not dealt with as an adult. As he faces those fears and bonds with the monsters they disappear. The final film clearly deviated from that idea substantially.

Sources: 1, 2, 3, 4


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