If you’ve ever seen any of the Toy Story films—and come on, who hasn’t at this point?—you’ll know that the most basic principle of being a sentient toy is that you never ever let humans see that you’re actually real. A Japanese display just outside Takashimaya mall in Tokyo has brought this magical idea to life, creating a shadow box in conjunction with Toy Story 4 that you really have to see to believe.
- They’re known as Toy Story windows. Just outside Shinjuku station, four such windows appeared this summer, each of which showed some of our favorite Toy Story characters dancing and generally having tons of fun. However, when you go up to the windows and open them, suddenly the toys are completely lifeless beneath. Wait, WHAT?!
- Seriously, how did they do that? What’s crazy is that in the Buzz Lightyear and Woody window, both characters are in one part of the window but when you open it, they’re all the way at the back of the box in a completely different area. How on earth is that possible?! Sure, the “windows” are showing mini-films, no doubt, but the fact that the toys seem to have scrambled to get back in place when you open them just makes it seem so magical.
- This is how you do promotion. Leave it to Japan to come up with such an amazingly advance technological display to go along with the latest film in the popular Disney franchise. Sure, you can make giant billboards showing the characters, but bringing one of the most fundamental elements of the series to life—toys trying to avoid human detection—is just genius.
- Why aren’t they available to buy? These Toy Story shadow boxes made an amazing promotional display for the movie, but why aren’t there mini versions available to buy in, say, the Disney Store? Every fan, regardless of age, would definitely buy one as a collectible and it would probably sell out everywhere. Make it happen, Disney!