Monsters University is a 2013 American computer-animated monster comedy film produced by Pixar Animation Studios and released by Walt Disney Pictures. It was directed and written by Dan Scanlon (in his feature directoral debut) and produced by Kori Rae, with John Lasseter, Pete Docter, Andrew Stanton and Lee Unkrich as executive producers. The music for the film was composed by Randy Newman, making it his seventh collaboration with Pixar. It is a prequel to Monsters, Inc. (2001), making it the only time Pixar has made a prequel film. Monsters University tells the story of the main characters of Monsters, Inc., James P. Sullivan and Mike Wazowski, and their time at college, where they start off as rivals, but slowly become best friends. During the time, they must learn to work together, along with Oozma Kappa members, in order to make his dream reality and things right. John Goodman, Billy Crystal, Steve Buscemi, Bob Peterson, and John Ratzenberger reprise their roles as James P. Sullivan, Mike Wazowski, Randall Boggs, Roz, and the Abominable Snowman, respectively, while the new cast were joined by Helen Mirren, Alfred Molina, Peter Sohn, Joel Murray, Sean Hayes, Dave Foley, Charlie Day, and Nathan Fillion. Bonnie Hunt, who voiced Ms. Flint in the first film, voices Mike's grade school teacher Ms. Karen Graves.
Disney, as the rights holder, had plans for a sequel to Monsters, Inc. since 2005. Following disagreements with Pixar, Disney tasked its Circle 7 Animation unit to make the film. An early draft of the film was developed; however, Disney's purchase of Pixar in early 2006 led to the cancellation of Circle 7's version of the film. A Pixar-made sequel was confirmed in 2010, and in 2011, it was confirmed that the film would instead be a prequel titled Monsters University.
Monsters University premiered on June 5, 2013 at the BFI Southbank in London, England, and was theatrically released on June 21, 2013, in the United States. It was accompanied in theaters by a short film, The Blue Umbrella, directed by Saschka Unseld. The film received positive reviews from the critics and grossed $743 million worldwide against its $200 million production budget, making it the seventh highest-grossing film of 2013. An animated short film titled Party Central, which takes place shortly after the events of Monsters University, premiered in fall 2013 before being released theatrically with Muppets Most Wanted in 2014.