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How 'Toy Story 4' and Pixar keep Don Rickles' legacy alive two years after his death

Christina Schoellkopf, Los Angeles Times on

Published in Entertainment News

The toys in "Toy Story 4" are freaking out in Bonnie's family RV when Rex spirals into his typical hysterics.

Panicked, the dinosaur swings his oversize green tail and whacks fellow franchise veteran Mr. Potato Head in the process.

"Hey, watch it, buddy!" the spud cries out, as his detachable pieces fall to his feet.

The scene features Don Rickles' return to the big screen, two years after his death in April 2017 at age 90.

The Emmy-winning actor and comedian continued to headline lounges and concert halls well into his 80s, and before his death, Rickles agreed to join the fourth iteration of the 24-year-old franchise, which opens in theaters Friday.

The "Toy Story" team asked Rickles' family if they wanted him to be included posthumously.

 

It was a no-brainer, daughter Mindy Rickles said at the world premiere in Hollywood this month.

"He always said, 'Keep my name alive. Let them know who I am.' So he would be thrilled by all of this, definitely," she said on the red carpet.

"Toy Story 4" director Josh Cooley was overjoyed, "I can only see Mr. Potato Head as Don Rickles doing that voice. I can't imagine anyone else."

It was a painstaking process to include archival sound of Rickles' voice.

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