Monsters University is a 2013 American computer-animated comedy film produced by Pixar Animation Studios and released by Walt Disney Pictures. It is the fourteenth feature film made by Pixar and a prequel to 2001’s “Monsters, Inc.” Directed by Dan Scanlon and produced by Kori Rae, the film was released on June 21, 2013.
The story follows a young monster named Mike Wazowski who dreams of becoming a Scarer. He enrolls in the prestigious Monsters University to achieve his goal. There, he meets James P. “Sulley” Sullivan, a natural-born Scarer. The two initially do not get along, but they are forced to work together when they are both kicked out of the university’s elite Scare Program.
They join a fraternity of misfit monsters, Oozma Kappa, and enter the Scare Games, a competition that could get them back into the Scare Program if they win. Through teamwork, determination, and embracing their differences, Mike and Sulley learn to work together and eventually become best friends.
- John Goodman as James P. “Sulley” Sullivan
- Billy Crystal as Mike Wazowski
- Steve Buscemi as Randall Boggs
- Helen Mirren as Dean Hardscrabble
- Peter Sohn as Scott “Squishy” Squibbles
- Joel Murray as Don Carlton
- Sean Hayes as Terri Perry
- Dave Foley as Terry Perry
- Charlie Day as Art
The film was in development for several years, with Pixar revisiting the characters and world of “Monsters, Inc.” The filmmakers conducted extensive research into college life and fraternities to create an authentic environment for the film. The character designs and animation were refined to reflect the younger versions of the characters.
“Monsters University” received generally positive reviews from critics, with praise for its animation, voice acting, and humor. However, some critics felt it did not reach the same emotional depth as other Pixar films. The film grossed over $743 million worldwide, making it a commercial success.
The film’s soundtrack was composed by Randy Newman, who also composed the music for “Monsters, Inc.” The soundtrack includes a mix of orchestral pieces and college fight songs to capture the spirit of the university setting.
“Monsters University” explores themes of friendship, self-discovery, and the importance of embracing one’s unique qualities. It also delves into the idea that success is not solely defined by natural talent but by hard work, perseverance, and collaboration.
The film has become a beloved addition to the Pixar canon and has inspired various merchandise, theme park attractions, and even a Disney+ series titled “Monsters at Work,” which continues the story of the characters in the Monsters, Inc. world.
“Monsters University” was nominated for several awards, including the BAFTA Award for Best Animated Film and the Annie Award for Best Animated Feature. It won the Hollywood Film Award for Animation of the Year.
“Monsters University” is a charming and entertaining prequel that expands on the world and characters introduced in “Monsters, Inc.” It offers a fresh perspective on the monsters’ world, focusing on the formative college years of the beloved characters Mike and Sulley. The film’s success in both critical acclaim and box office revenue solidifies its place in the rich legacy of Pixar’s animated films.