Scariest Pixar Movie Theories That Will Ruin Your Childhood

There are lots of pixar movie theories out there, and then there are the scary ones. Let's find out about the scariest pixar movie theories!


For many years, Pixar has been warming hearts around the world with its animated family movies. But could it be that the heart-warming movies are much darker than they seem?

The internet is rife with theorists who suggest that there are some seriously scary ideas hidden within these classics. Some of them may even ruin your childhood! If you’re brave enough, let’s explore 10 scary Pixar movie theories.

10. Rise of the Toys

Scariest Pixar Movie Theories Rise of the Toys Toy Story

The Toy Story franchise is the one that started it all for Pixar, and it’s still going today. The series may seem like a harmless story about the connection between children and toys, but there’s nothing like an all-encompassing theory to ruin your day.

The relationship between young Andy and his poseable friends seems touching, but it may conceal a dark secret. Toys in Toy Story generally get a rough ride at the hands of humans, with their situation being comparable to slavery in many ways.

They’re forced to suppress their personalities, living a life in secret in constant service of their masters, and are even branded. This all seems ridiculous, until you consider the possibility that the toys may actually be alive, either as highly-sophisticated A.I. machines or otherwise.

Scariest Pixar Movie Theories Toy Story

The theory even goes so far as to suggest that all seemingly inanimate objects that possess a hint of personality are alive in the Pixar universe. Here’s where Cars comes in. It’s speculated that the human-free world of talking cars is a future where the sentient machines of Toy Story’s era have risen up and taken over.

This also ties into the events of WALL-E where humans have been evacuated from Earth. What if the story of too much trash forcing humans off Earth in WALL-E was simply a cover-up, hiding the fact that evil, living objects had forced humans out? Perhaps Toy Story 5 will even feature Woody channeling his inner Chucky?

Scariest Pixar Movie Theories Toy Story

9. Boo’s Unending Search

The unique Scottish fantasy flick, Brave, may seem to stand alone in the Pixar catalog. But it contains some undeniable links to the adventures of Mike Wazowski and friends. Some believe Brave’s magical, wizened old witch is none other than Sully’s pint-sized pal, Boo!

Scariest Pixar Movie Theories That Will Ruin Your Childhood

Why? The answer lies in those doors in Monsters Inc that take the Monsters to different places, and what it is they actually do. Supposedly, they can take you all over the human world, but what if these portals could take you across time as well as space?

According to supporters of this theory, Boo devoted her life after Monsters Inc to searching for Sully, and in doing so ended up going back in time to the world of Brave. It’s clear that Brave’s witch has harnessed the eternal magic of the Will-o-Wisps.

Indeed, the witch disappears without a trace after entering a door in her hut, suggesting a similar capability to the doors in Monsters Inc.

Scariest Pixar Movie Theories That Will Ruin Your Childhood

It’s possible Boo discovered this power in her own time and harnessed it to create magic doors to reach Sully, but was seemingly unsuccessful, and remained in the bonny Scotland of old. To add credence to the theory, the witch’s hut even has a carving of Sully on display; possibly a reminder of her old friend.

But here’s the childhood-ruining part: Boo is elderly now, and after all those years of trying, it seems like she’ll never see her Kitty again.

Scariest Pixar Movie Theories That Will Ruin Your Childhood

8. A Monstrous Plague

Monsters Inc is the gift that keeps on giving when it comes to scary theories. The aforementioned theory that doors are able to travel in time as well as space could explain the Monster’s extreme fear of children.

Initially, it seems like the monsters fear a War of the Worlds-style scenario, where contamination by the alien microbes of the human world could wipe them out. But Sully and Mike’s immunity to Boo seems to discredit this.

However, if the doors are able to travel across time, it’s entirely possible that – at some point – one or several monsters traveled back to the 14th century on a scare mission. For instance, if they visited Europe around 1348, they could have entered the bedroom of a highly-infectious victim of the Black Death.

Scariest Pixar Movie Theories That Will Ruin Your Childhood

Possibly even a room stacked with plague-ridden corpses. If the infection spread to them, even hairy beasts would be right to be petrified. After all, experiencing huge, blood-filled boils, intense pain, fever, diarrhea and death isn’t anyone’s idea of fun. With that risk factor, you’d think they’d seek alternative energy sources than only using children’s screams.

7. Monstropolis of the Future

In 2015’s Inside Out, we take it for granted that the beings inside Riley’s head, as well as her imaginary friend Bing Bong, are either representations of her emotions or products of her imagination. But what if they existed in a much more literal way?

Scariest Pixar Movie Theories Monstropolisof the Future

Real-world research in recent years has hinted that bacteria present in our bodies and brains have the ability to influence our emotions and the functions of our brains. So, what if the creatures in Riley’s head are in fact some kind of mind-controlling bacteria? Furthermore, looking at their appearance, could these creatures be precursors to the monsters of Monsters Inc?

The theory suggests that these bacteria evolved over thousands of years after Inside Out, leaving their human hosts, growing in size, establishing their own civilizations, and becoming less humanoid in form, before finally taking on the forms we see in Mike, Sully and their colleagues.

Scariest Pixar Movie Theories That Will Ruin Your Childhood

6. Nemo the Nobody

Finding Nemo is one of the more gut-wrenching Pixar movies. It starts with a tragedy and then doubles down on depression when Nemo goes missing. Ultimately there’s a happy ending, but what if the whole adventure was a lie? Marlin clings onto Nemo because he’s the last remaining member of his family after losing the rest in a barracuda attack.

Scariest Pixar Movie Theories Nemo The Nobody

But some theorists believe Nemo also perished, and we’re witnessing Marlin going through the five stages of grief. First, there’s denial: Marlin convinces himself that Nemo survived the barracuda attack. Then anger: Marlin’s constant over-protection and arguing with his imaginary son.

And then there's bargaining: Marlin’s desire to help Dory in exchange for helping him search for his son. Followed by despair: Marlin’s feverish realization that his son is missing, with the waning hope that he may find him. And finally, acceptance: when Marlin finds Nemo, and finally lets him swim off to school at the end of the movie. Which, of course, is his way of letting go of the illusion that Nemo is still alive.

Scariest Pixar Movie Theories That Will Ruin Your Childhood

As for the scenes in the fish tank and others where Marlin isn’t around; Marlin could easily have imagined these scenarios to keep Nemo alive in his mind. To cap it all off, there’s the meaning of the name Nemo itself.

You may assume he’s named after Captain Nemo, but what’s the English translation of this Latin word…? “Nobody”. Marlin is trying to track down Nobody.

5. Father Figurine

Toys are very important to Andy, the child at the core of the first two Toy Story movies. According to one theory, however, they’re more than just playthings. Fans noticed the total absence of the boy’s father, as well as the fact that there are no pictures of him around the house.

Scariest Pixar Movie Theories Father Figurine  Toy Story

This led them to conclude that Andy’s dad didn’t die; he abandoned his family. Not only that, but Tom Hanks’ heroic cowboy fills the void, taking on the role of a weird, plastic father figure.

Through Andy’s vivid imagination, Woody comes to life, possessing the traits of loyalty and selflessness that Andy’s absent father lacked. Andy talks about Woody in glowing terms, idealizing him as someone who’s always there, filling a significant void in his young life.

Scariest Pixar Movie Theories Toy Story Father Figurine

You could even interpret Andy giving up his toys in the third installment as symbolic of him no longer needing that emotional crutch. The filmmaker's state they only had so much budget for so many characters, so Dad didn’t make the cut. But most are not convinced.

4. Sully’s Seat of Fate

Sully from Monsters Inc is a truly memorable character. Voiced by John Goodman, Sully was a labor of love for animators, in terms of the amount of work that went into realizing every strand of his colorful fur.

And it’s that fur that forms the center of this disturbing theory. It goes back to one of the villains of Monsters Inc: Randall Boggs. Randall tells Sully that humans have been known to strip monsters of their skin and use them as toilet seat covers.

Scariest Pixar Movie Theories Sully’s Seat of Fate

As a throwaway line, it’s pretty funny. But flash forward a decade to the Toy Story spinoff short, Partysaurus Rex, and you’ll see a very disturbing sight in the bathroom: a toilet seat cover, perfectly resembling Sully’s fur.

Turns out Randall wasn’t kidding around after all. It seems Sully entered the wrong bedroom and gave his final scare. Maybe that’s why Boo never found him…

Scariest Pixar Movie Theories Sully Toilet seat cover

3. Wheezy the Villain

Toy Story 2 introduces us to Wheezy, who’s about as far from threatening as you can get. We can’t help feeling sorry for him knowing he’s been left on the shelf, gathering dust for so long after his squeaker got broken through no fault of his own.

Scariest Pixar Movie Theories Toy Story Wheezy villain

But one twisted theory paints Wheezy as an embittered mastermind who manipulates Woody and sets the events of the movie in motion. Most people think Wheezy ended up out at the yard sale, where Woody would later be swiped up by Big Al, by accident.

But this theory suggests that Wheezy orchestrated the whole thing, knowing that Woody – being the heroic toy that he is – would come to his roadside rescue and inevitably get taken away from Andy. With Woody out of the picture, Wheezy hoped that he’d receive the attention Woody had been hogging for so long.

Scariest Pixar Movie Theories Toy Story Wheezy villain

It makes sense that spending so much time in isolation would have turned Wheezy into a bitter, twisted, squeaky penguin. Admittedly, that last part kind of undermines the intimidation factor.

2. Wreck-It-Ralph’s Mariticide

Sometimes what’s left unseen is scarier than what is shown. Take the scene in Wreck It Ralph, where Calhoun blasts the Cy-Bug that ate her beloved. Instead of seeing the monster get its just desserts, the filmmakers opt for a close-up of Calhoun’s horrified face.

Scariest Pixar Movie Theories That Will Ruin Your Childhood

It would seem she’s horrified because her husband-to-be just became Cy-Bug's supper. But her look of horror goes deeper. Cy-Bugs always take on the form of the things they eat. So what Calhoun was seeing as she opened fire could well have been some horrifying hybrid of a Cy-Bug and her dead husband.

Mere seconds after seeing her husband die once, she would have to kill him again. That’s the kind of thing that will put you in therapy for years…

Scariest Pixar Movie Theories Wreck-It-Ralph’s Mariticide

1. Boo’s Stockholm Syndrome

Just when you thought Monsters Inc couldn’t be dragged any further into the dark, eldritch depths, it’s time for the most disturbing theory of all.

To the untrained eye, Boo looks like she’s having great fun with her monstrous companions throughout the movie. But what if Monstropolis wasn’t a real place at all, nor were its inhabitants? What if the story of Monsters Inc is merely a warped memory left in Boo’s mind after her abduction?

Look at things from the point of view of Boo’s family. To them, Boo may’ve disappeared for days, only to reappear talking about a giant hairy individual who appeared in her room at night, tried to make her scream, and then took her to unfamiliar places. Could it be that Sully was actually some overly-hairy midnight creeper who went around abducting children?

Scariest Pixar Movie Theories That Will Ruin Your Childhood

Maybe he even wore a blue and purple shirt. Whatever happened on this journey, it’s possible that Boo developed Stockholm Syndrome and learned to love her kidnapper. Or perhaps her mind repressed the awful memories, turning the horrible people involved into lovable, colorful characters.

It could be a way of helping her cope with the trauma of the whole ordeal. Either way, it’s one twisted theory, and you’ll never be able to watch Monsters Inc in the same way.

Scariest Pixar Movie Theories That Will Ruin Your Childhood

If you enjoyed investigating these Pixar theories, you might want to read about the scariest Disney movie theories and this article about other theories that will ruin your childhood. Thanks for reading!

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