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- The "Pizza Planet" truck has showed up in almost every Pixar-created work.
- Each movie in the trilogy contains a shout out to its corresponding film in the original Star Wars trilogy:
- Toy Story: Buzz talking about delivering secret plans that reveal the weakness of a weapon that can destroy a planet, and Sid's "Where's the rebel base? Talk!" (A New Hope)
- Toy Story 2: Zurg's "I am your father", plus the Big "NO!" from the other Buzz that follows. (The Empire Strikes Back)
- Toy Story 3: Big Baby throwing Lotso into the dumpster (Return of the Jedi)
- The overall plot and tone of the series (especially the third film) has more than a glancing similarity to The Brave Little Toaster—the first feature-length film Lasseter and Ranft worked on.
- Scud, Spike's dog, bears a striking resemblance towards the live-action version of Sparky from Tim Burton's Frankenweenie before he's reconstructed into the titular creature.
- Andy's bookshelf contains a number of books named after Pixar shorts: "Red's Dream", "Tin Toy", and "Knick-Knack".
- The toolbox sitting on top of the crate Woody's trapped in is one from Binford Tools.
- The little binocular wind-up toy could be a reference to the same character appearing way back in the cute Disney documentary Where The Toys Come From.
- Perpetually-anxious Rex spouts "I just don't think I can take that kind of rejection!" then later "I don't like confrontation!", two Word of God lines from perpetually-anxious George McFly.
- Two to Star Trek: After calling Woody "a sad, strange little man", Buzz does the Vulcan salute. The soundtrack album version of "I Will Go Sailing No More" has the line "Never more to sail my ship/Where no man has gone before".
- Pizza Planet's entrance is guarded by old-school Cylon centurions. Behold!◊
- Both the Alien Slime soda dispenser and the Whack-an-Alien game at Pizza Planet are a reference to the titular monster from the film series Alien.
- When Buzz (excuse me, "Mrs. Nesbitt") is having tea, he says he's "sucking down darjeeling with Marie Antoinette and her little sister." The dolls are both headless, so which is which doesn't matter so much, but this is (potentially) referencing both Marie Antoinette's fate of beheading and Wednesday Addams's doll. Also, they're taking tea from a Utah teapot.
- While trying to escape Sid's house Woody repeatedly calls out, "There's no place like home!".
- Woody's head spinning all the way around.
- Big Baby doing the same in the third movie.
- In an alternate version of the same scene, Woody says to Sid, "Gepetto, look! I'm a real boy!"
- The way Woody communicates through his speaker box without the string being pulled, and not moving (at the beginning of the backyard scene) is reminiscent of Talky Tina from the Twilight Zone episode "Living Doll".
- In the chase scene at the end, you get a quick glance inside the car, and the radio's playing Hakuna Matata.
- Towards the beginning, a shark toy pops out of the toybox wearing Woody's hat and says "Look! I'm Woody! Howdy howdy howdy!". A very similar joke—involving a vulture in a cowboy hat—appeared in The Far Side.
- When Buzz is running away from the giant globe, the sound effect of the globe rolling is pulled from the boulder in Raiders of the Lost Ark.
- In Sid's House of Terror, the carpet in the hallway matches that of the Overlook Hotel. Additionally, his Pteranodon toy is clearly a Jurassic Park toy with the serial numbers filed off.
- When Sid is torturing Woody, he quips "We have ways of making you talk," referencing a (misquoted) line from the film In The Lives Of A Bengal Lancer (1935).
- The way Buzz reacts when Woody opens his space helmet is a nod to the decompression scene from Total Recall (1990). Additionally, when Buzz scolds Woody for doing this shortly after, he remarks, "My eyeballs could've been sucked from their sockets!", which is exactly what happens to one of the villains in the film when they get exposed to Mars' atmosphere.