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A Story is of the two student films made by Andrew Stanton; the other being Somewhere in the Arctic. The film was made in CalArts and it was completed in 1987. This short film is featured in the Pixar Short Films Collection, Volume 2.
The short is being narrated like a storybook. The story is about a kid named Melvin. Like most storybook children, Melvin had no friends, and his parents totally ostracized him, so he spends most of his time in front of the TV, watching his favorite TV show, Ted Land. One day, the main character of Ted Land, a giant blue monster with giant purple spots on his arms named Ted, suddenly talks to Melvin to come play. Suddenly, Ted's passes his arm through the TV screen, and pulls Melvin in, knocking him out in the process.
The scene now shows Melvin and Ted walking down a long path. The narrator tells the viewers that they're going on adventures, hoping to find new friends and do happy cute things. As the narrator tells the viewers that nothing can ruin their day, Melvin and Ted immediately stop in their tracks when the narrator says that a group of clown goons led by their killer clown leader, Randy could ruin their day. These clown cause mischief at the nearby village, where they pelt Monks with pies.
When Melvin politely tells Randy to stop, Randy gets offended, so he orders his goons to capture Melvin and Ted and take them to his lair. While Randy has our two heroes trapped, he explains his evil plan: to overthrow the kingdom and become supreme ruler. Then we cut into a montage of Melvin and Ted getting trapped in different death-defying situations, and Randy getting one step closer to his evil plan. The final shot of Melvin and Ted shows them tied up in a room full of dynamite. The narrator says that only a miracle can save them, but he says there are no such things as miracles, so the room blows up. The narrator ends the story saying that Randy became king, and died at the age of 108.
- According to Andrew Stanton, the inspiration for A Story came from a puppet show in the 60s called H. R. Pufnstuf because you start to get the idea that you're in a storybook without even knowing.
- Andrew Stanton also states that the inspiration for the killer clown goons came from the 1988 sci-fi horror comedy Killer Klowns from Outer Space. But A Story film was released a year earlier. Stanton chose the clowns because they looked sinister enough to look like villains.
- Ted bears a strong resemblance to Sulley from the Monsters, Inc. movies.
- If one listens carefully when Randy is sputtering nonsense after Melvin tells him to stop with their act, he says something that sounds a lot like the F word.
- At the end of the end credits, Andrew Stanton's nickname was "Boog."