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Monsters, Inc.
Monsters, Inc. logo.svg
Directed by Peter Docter
Lee Unkrich
David Silverman
Produced by Darla Anderson
John Lasseter
Written by Story:
Jill Culton
Peter Docter
Ralph Eggleston
Jeff Pidgeon
Screenplay:
Andrew Stanton
Daniel Gerson
Additional Screenplay:
Robert L. Baird
Rhett Reese
Jonathan Roberts
Starring John Goodman
Billy Crystal
Steve Buscemi
James Coburn
Jennifer Tilly
Music by Randy Newman
Studio Walt Disney Pictures
Pixar
Distributed by Buena Vista Pictures Distribution
Release date(s) November 2, 2001
Running time 94 min.
Language English
Budget $115 million
Money made Domestic: $255,873,250
Worldwide: $525,366,597

Monsters, Inc. is a 2001 American computer-animated buddy comedy film produced by Pixar Animation Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Pictures. Featuring the voices of John Goodman, Billy Crystal, Steve Buscemi, James Coburn, and Jennifer Tilly, the film was directed by Pete Docter in his directorial debut, and executive produced by John Lasseter and Andrew Stanton. The film centers on two monsters – James P. "Sulley" Sullivan and his one-eyed partner and best friend Mike Wazowski – employed at the titular energy-producing factory Monsters, Inc, which generates power by scaring human children. The monster world believes that children are toxic, and when a small child enters the factory, Sulley and Mike must return her home before it is too late.

Docter began developing the film in 1996, and wrote the story with Jill Culton, Jeff Pidgeon and Ralph Eggleston. Stanton wrote the screenplay with screenwriter Daniel Gerson. The characters went through many incarnations over the film's five-year production process. The technical team and animators found new ways to render fur and cloth realistically for the film. Randy Newman, who composed the music for Pixar's three prior films, returned to compose its fourth.

Monsters, Inc. was praised by critics and proved to be a major box office success from its release on November 2, 2001, generating over $577 million worldwide and becoming the third highest-grossing film of 2001. Monsters, Inc. saw a 3D re-release in theaters on December 19, 2012. A prequel titled Monsters University, which was directed by Dan Scanlon, was released on June 21, 2013.

Plot

The city of Monstropolis in the monster world is powered by energy from the screams of human children. At the Monsters, Inc. factory, skilled monsters employed as "scarers" venture into the human world to scare children and harvest their screams, through doors that activate portals to children's bedroom closets. It is considered dangerous work, as human children are believed to be toxic. Energy production is falling because children are becoming less easily scared, and Monsters, Inc.'s chairman, Henry J. Waternoose, is determined to find a solution.

James P. "Sulley" Sullivan and his partner, Mike Wazowski, are the organization's top employees, but their chief rival, Randall Boggs, is close behind. One day, Sulley discovers that Randall has left a door activated on the scare floor and a small girl has entered the factory. After several failed attempts to put her back, Randall sends the door back into the factory's door vault and Sulley conceals her and takes her out of the factory. He interrupts Mike's date with his girlfriend, Celia, at a sushi restaurant, and chaos erupts when the child is discovered. Sulley and Mike manage to escape with the child before the Child Detection Agency (CDA) quarantines the restaurant. They soon discover that she is not toxic after all; Sulley grows attached to her and calls her "Boo," while Mike is just anxious to be rid of her.

The duo smuggle her back into the factory disguised as a baby monster in an attempt to send her home. Randall discovers Boo and tries to kidnap her, but mistakenly kidnaps Mike instead. He straps Mike to a large machine called "The Scream Extractor", which he intends to use to revolutionize the scaring industry and solve the monster world's energy problems by forcefully extracting screams from kidnapped human children. Before Randall can use the machine on Mike, Sulley intervenes and reports Randall to Waternoose. Waternoose, who is secretly in league with Randall, instead exiles Mike and Sulley to the Himalayas. The two meet the Abominable Snowman, who tells them about a nearby village, which Sulley realizes he can use to return to the factory. Sulley prepares to return, but Mike refuses to go with him.

Meanwhile, Randall is preparing to use the Scream Extractor on Boo, but Sulley suddenly arrives and saves her, destroying the machine in the process. Randall and Sulley battle, and after Mike returns and helps Sulley overpower Randall, the two reconcile, take Boo, and flee.

Randall pursues them to the door vault, and a wild chase ensues among the millions of doors as they move in and out of the storage vault on rails to the factory floor. Boo's laughter causes all the doors to activate at once, allowing the monsters to freely pass in and out of the human world. Randall attempts to kill Sulley, but Boo overcomes her fear and attacks him, enabling Sulley to catch him. Sulley and Mike then trap Randall in the human world, where two residents at a trailer park (as seen in A Bug’s Life) mistake him for an alligator and beat him with a shovel.

Sulley and Mike take Boo and her door to the training room, and trick Waternoose into revealing his plot with Randall, while Mike secretly records the entire conversation for the CDA to review. The CDA arrests Waternoose, and it is revealed that Roz, the scare floor secretary, is the CDA's leader. Roz thanks Sulley and Mike for their help, orders them to return Boo home, and has Boo's door demolished to prevent any further contact with her.

With the factory temporarily shut down, Sulley is named the new CEO of Monsters, Inc. Under his leadership, the energy crisis is solved by harvesting children's laughter instead of screams, as laughter has been found to be ten times more potent. Mike takes Sulley aside, revealing he has rebuilt Boo's door. It needs one final piece, which Sulley took as a memento, in order to work. Sulley puts the door chip into place, enters and joyfully reunites with Boo.

Voice cast

  • John Goodman as James P. "Sulley" Sullivan, a large, furry blue monster with horns and purple spots. Even though he excels at scaring children, he is a gentle giant by nature. At the film's beginning, he has been the "Best Scarer" at Monsters, Inc. for several months running.
  • Billy Crystal as Michael "Mike" Wazowski, a short, round green monster with a single big eyeball and skinny limbs. He is Sulley's station runner and coach on the scare floor, and the two are close friends and roommates. He is charming and generally the more organized of the two, but is prone to neurotics and his ego sometimes leads him astray. He is dating Celia Mae, who calls him "Googly-Bear".
  • Mary Gibbs as Boo, a two-year-old human girl who is unafraid of any monster except Randall, the scarer assigned to her door. She believes Sulley is a large cat and refers to him as "Kitty". In the film, one of Boo's drawings is covered with the name "Mary". The book based on the film gives Boo's "real" name as Mary Gibbs, the name of her voice actress, who is also the daughter of one of the film's story artists, Rob.
  • Steve Buscemi as Randall Boggs, a purple, eight-legged lizard monster with a chameleon-like ability to change his skin color and blend in completely with his surroundings. He is a snide and preening character who makes himself a rival to Sulley and Mike in scream collection.
  • James Coburn as Henry J. Waternoose III, an arthropodic monster with a crab-like lower body. He is the CEO of Monsters, Inc., a job passed down through his family for three generations. He acts as a mentor to Sulley, holding great faith in him as a scarer.
  • Jennifer Tilly as Celia Mae, a gorgon-like monster with one eye and tentacle-like legs. She is the receptionist for Monsters, Inc. and Mike's girlfriend.
  • Bob Peterson as Roz, a slug-like monster with a raspy voice who administrates for Scare Floor F where Sulley, Mike, and Randall work. At the end of the movie, it is revealed that Roz is "Agent Number 1" of the CDA, and has worked undercover at Monsters, Inc. for two and a half years.
  • John Ratzenberger as Yeti a.k.a. The Abominable Snowman, a furry white monster who was banished to the Himalayas. He was inspired by the Abominable Snowman from the 1964 Rankin/Bass animated special Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.
  • Frank Oz as Jeff Fungus, Randall's red-skinned, three-eyed, beleaguered assistant.
  • Dan Gerson as Smitty and Needleman, two goofy monsters with cracking voices, who work as janitors and operate the Door Shredder when required.
  • Steve Susskind as Jerry Slugworth, a red, seven-fingered monster, who manages Scare Floor F and is a good friend of Waternoose.
  • Bonnie Hunt as Ms. Flint, a female monster, who trains new monsters to scare children.
  • Jeff Pidgeon as Thaddeus "Phlegm" Bile, a trainee scarer for Monsters, Inc.
  • Samuel Lord Black as George Sanderson, a chubby, oranged-furred monster with a sole horn on top of his head. A running gag throughout the film involves George repeatedly making contact with human artifacts (such as socks and the like which cling to his fur via static), prompting his scare coach to trigger "23–19" incidents with the CDA resulting in him mobbed, shaved bald, and sterilized. He is good friends with Pete "Claws" Ward.
  • Phil Proctor as Charlie, George's assistant with sea-green skin and tendrils for limbs. He is friends with George, Mike, and Sulley, but is quick to call the CDA on his scarer at the drop of a hat.
  • Joe Ranft as Pete "Claws" Ward, a blue monster with razor-sharp claws and horrifying breath.

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