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Pixar’s 2025 Sci-Fi Movie Is More Important Than Any Of Its Other Upcoming Releases

May 15, 20245 Mins Read


  • Pixar’s upcoming 2025 sci-fi movie
    has a lot riding on it as the studio’s future success depends on original hits.
  • Previous Pixar sci-fi projects like
    were successful, but recent efforts like
    fell short at the box office.
  • While Pixar’s focus has been on sequels, the release of
    will determine if the studio can still thrive with original ideas.

Pixar is at a huge turning point in the studio’s history, with its 2025 science-fiction movie arguably needing to be the biggest financial success of all its other upcoming films. Pixar has several upcoming movies and TV shows, but 2025’s feature-length release has a great deal riding on it as far as the studio’s future is concerned. Although there is a lot of hype around Pixar’s other future projects, they all fall under the same umbrella that could prove unsustainable going forward.

Every Pixar movie is a visual marvel, but that’s seemingly not enough for their projects to always turn a profit. Several Pixar projects have bombed at the box office in recent years, with the last original movie to become a smash hit being 2017’s Coco. The top five most profitable Pixar movies of all time are all sequels, with 2015’s Inside Out coming in sixth overall. The studio’s 2025 release is an original release, so it doesn’t have the comfort blanket of a pre-existing fan base.


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Elio Needs To Prove Pixar’s Original Releases Can Still Be Big Box Office Hits

Pixar’s non-sequel movies haven’t thrived in recent years

Elio is currently scheduled to be released in 2025, after being pushed back from its original 2024 release window. The fun-looking outer space adventure has the huge responsibility of making sure everyone knows that Pixar still has what it takes to succeed at the box office with a new idea. It’s tough to argue with Pixar’s immense financial success with sequels like 2018’s Incredibles 2 and 2019’s Toy Story 4, but the studio’s original concepts have long been an issue when it comes to box office sales.

Unfortunately, Elio’s delay from 2024 gives the movie some stiff competition, as it now releases in June 2025 – the same month as Dreamworks’ live-action remake of How to Train Your Dragon.

2023’s Elemental did eventually make Pixar some money, but it was nowhere near what their other movies have made, and Elemental‘s success was incredibly slow-burning after a concerning start. So, Pixar is certainly capable of recapturing its past successes, but it remains to be seen if Elio will help reestablish the trend. Unfortunately, Elio‘s delay from 2024 gives the movie some stiff competition, as it now releases in June 2025 – the same month as Dreamworks’ live-action remake of How to Train Your Dragon.

Elio Needs To Fix Pixar’s Mixed Record With Sci-Fi Movies

WALL-E & Lightyear didn’t achieve the same level of success

Science-fiction isn’t a genre that Pixar delves into all too often, and even when it is has done, success hasn’t been guaranteed. Pixar’s first sci-fi effort came in 2008 when the heart-warming 29th-century space opera WALL-E was a huge critical and financial success. It wasn’t until 2022’s Lightyear that Pixar returned to sci-fi, and even then, the studio didn’t repeat the triumph it had with WALL-E 14 years earlier. However, the main difference between the two movies is that WALL-E is an original concept, whereas Lightyear is a confusingly meta prequel to the entire Toy Story franchise.

bombs, then it could see the end of Pixar’s sci-fi efforts, and it could be a major blow to their plans for more original movies.

Elio looks to be taking a route much more akin to WALL-E than Lightyear, as the upcoming 2025 movie is set within a new universe rather than toying with the framework of an existing franchise as Lightyear did. As Pixar’s third sci-fi movie, Elio could tip the balance of the studio’s back catalog within the genre. If Elio bombs, then it could see the end of Pixar’s sci-fi efforts, and it could be a major blow to their plans for more original movies.

Pixar’s Other 3 Upcoming Movies Are All Sequels

Inside Out 2 is out in June 2024

Elio is currently Pixar’s only upcoming movie that isn’t a sequel, showing the studio’s focus on follow-ups over developing original ideas. Inside Out 2 is scheduled for release on June 14, 2024, with Moana 2 coming next in November of the same year. Toy Story 5‘s release date has been confirmed to be June 19, 2026. Based on how much money each respective franchise has made Pixar through the years, it’s understandable that sequels would be priorities in the wake of certain failures. However, Pixar will eventually run out of sequels to make.


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If Elio does well, then not only does it prove that Pixar can still succeed with original ideas, but it also opens up another potential franchise for the studio. In short, there could be Elio sequels that follow on from the 2025 animated feature-length movie. However, the debut of Disney+ in 2019 could also have contributed to recent box office failures, as the family-focused nature of Pixar movies means it can sometimes be more convenient to await the movie’s arrival on the streaming service. Unfortunately, only time will tell whether Pixar‘s Elio will be the savior the studio needs.

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