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‘Monsters Inc.’ turns 20 today

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Disney+

On November 2, 2001, Disney/Pixar released Monsters, Inc., one of Pixar’s most enduring franchises. 

The toon starred the voice of Billy Crystal as one-eyed would-be funnyman Mike Wazowski and John Goodman as his fuzzy buddy, James P. “Sully” Sullivan.

The movie’s conceit is that their City of Monstropolis is powered by the energy generated by kids’ screams, so Monstropolis employs its citizens to spook children every night by emerging from their closets. Goodman’s Sully is the top scarer at their titular company — though Steve Buscemi‘s scaly chameleon-like Randall is close on his tail. 

The two best friends encounter a problem, however, when a little girl named Boo accidentally tags along with Sully back to the company, forcing the pair to find a way to get her home. 

Monsters Inc., directed by Pete Docter, went on to earn more than $574 million dollars worldwide, and won the Oscar for Best Animated Feature. It also spawned the 2013 feature Monsters University, as well as shorts featuring the characters, and the new Disney+ series Monsters at Work.

Crystal and Goodman told ABC Audio they’re not surprised by the original movie’s longevity.

“No, I’m not,” Crystal says, “because, you know, it’s it was so meaningful to people and then it became generational. The kids who were six or seven…now those people are almost 30. And so now they’re sharing it with their kids.”

Goodman agreed. “This stands the test of time. People that I run into, that’s usually the first thing they say is, ‘There’s Sully!'” says Goodman. “I am proud of that, to be able to be a part of these artists worlds.”  

Disney is the parent company of ABC News.

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