Lasseter is currently both Disney and Pixar’s chief creative officer and will work alongside Lee Unkrich, the director of Toy Story 3, Pete Docter, the director of Up, and Andrew Stanton, the director of Finding Nemo.
Lasseter masterminded the first two films in the series. He said the movie would open a “new chapter” in the lives of the characters – 22 years after Pixar’s hit animation first wowed audiences. “We love these characters so much; they are like family to us,” Lasseter said in a statement. “We don’t want to do anything with them unless it lives up to or surpasses what’s gone before.
The last film in the money-spinning franchise came out in 2010 and raked in more than $1bn (£630m) at the worldwide box office. But that was dwarfed by Toy Story 3 merchandise pulling in a hefty $10bn (£6.3bn)
The new movie is set for release in June 2017. Tom Hanks and Tim Allen are expected to reprise their voice-over roles as Woody and Buzz but the exact plot is a closely guarded secret.