Toy Story 3 screening to support programs at Comer Children's Hospital at the University of Chicago

Toy Story 3 screening to support programs at Comer Children's Hospital at the University of Chicago

April 23, 2010

Comer Children's Hospital at the University of Chicago is partnering with Walt Disney Pictures and Pixar Animation Studios to hold a preview screening of Disney*Pixar's Toy Story 3 on May 15, 2010, at the new Kerasotes Showplace ICON Theatre and Lobby Lounge at 150 W. Roosevelt, Chicago.

This will be the only advance full screening of the movie outside of Hollywood. All proceeds from the event will go directly towards patient care and research at Comer Children's Hospital.

The event will begin at 10 am with a brunch and VIP reception with Toy Story 3 director, Lee Unkrich -- co-director of Toy Story 2, Finding Nemo, and Monsters, Inc. -- and several of the actors who supply the characters' voices (including Joan Cusack as Jessie the Cowgirl and Jeff Garlin as Buttercup). A screening of the movie will follow at noon.

"This is a wonderful opportunity for fans to get an early look at what is certain to be a fabulous movie while helping to support a fabulous children's hospital," said David Gozal, MD, professor and chair of pediatrics at the University of Chicago Medical Center and Physician in Chief at Comer Children's Hospital. "Children all over Chicago, and many from around the country, rely on the caregivers at Comer for treatment of complex medical problems. We are grateful to the team from Disney*Pixar for helping us advance that cause, and with their help we hope to advance it, as Buzz Lightyear might put it, 'to infinity and beyond.'"

As a major referral center for treatment of complex disease, Comer Children's Hospital cares for thousands of children each year. Nearly 6,000 children were hospitalized at Comer last year, most from the Chicago area, but many from the Midwest and around the world. Physicians at Comer also provided more than 32,000 general pediatric and specialty care visits as well as 30,000 visits to the Comer pediatric emergency room.

The hospital is named for the late Gary Comer, the founder of Lands' End, who made a generous gift in 2001 to establish Comer Children's Hospital at the University of Chicago, followed by another gift to build the Comer Pediatric Emergency Department, followed by a another donation to create the Comer Center for Children and Specialty Care at the University of Chicago -- for a total of more than $84 million.

Since Comer opened in 2005, replacing the University's former children's hospital, the health care teams there, headed by University of Chicago faculty physicians, have expanded the hospital's reputation as a nationally recognized center for neonatal care, childhood cancers, pediatric neurosurgery and other specialties.

Comer Children's Hospital also demonstrates a strong commitment to the community. More than 60 percent of all care provided at Comer Children's Hospital is for children covered by the Medicaid program. It offers many innovative community programs, such as

  • The Comer Children Hospital's Pediatric Mobile Medical Unit -- a "hospital on wheels" that brings medical resources to children's schools on the South Side of Chicago;
  • The Center for Healthy Families -- which provides coordinated follow-up care for children from the neonatal intensive care unit who need specialized follow-up care after they are discharged; and,
  • The Pediatric Immunization Program -- designed to achieve 90-percent on-time adherence to immunization recommendations among Chicago's inner-city children.

Toy Story 3 will open in theaters June 18, more than a month after the Comer screening. The film is eagerly anticipated. The original Toy Story, 1995, the first feature-length computer-animated film, was nominated for many awards. It won eight Annie Awards, including Best Animated Feature, and was nominated for three Academy Awards, including Best Writing and Best Music, and for two Golden Globes, including Best Motion Picture. The highest-grossing domestic film of 1995, it received an Academy Special-Achievement Award in 1996 "for the development and inspired application of techniques." Toy Story 2, 1999, was one of the rare sequels judged as good as the original, and proved even more popular. It won the Golden Globe award for Best Picture, Comedy or Musical.

WLS-TV, the ABC affiliate in Chicago and thus part of the Disney company, has agreed to serve as a media partner for this event, supporting the charitable screening with public-service announcements and other efforts.

Five hundred tickets to the screening will be sold for $50. This includes admission, refreshments and a "goodie bag" of gift items related to the movie. The price increases to $150 for 250 "VIP" tickets, which also provides access to brunch with director Unkrich and talent and special seating. Corporate and in-kind sponsorship opportunities are still available at many levels.

Tickets are limited. For more information or to purchase tickets, please visit or call (773) 834-5660.

Due to security measures, check-in for the movie will begin at 11:15 am. The screening will begin promptly at 12:00 pm. No electronic devices (cameras, cell phones, video recorders, sound recorders, etc.) will be allowed in the theater. Guests are strongly encouraged to leave all electronic devices, including cell phones, at home or to securely lock them in their cars. A bag check will be conducted and guests will be required to check any electronic devices in their possession prior to entering the theater.