If you’re like many of us at Mickey News, you have a nostalgic fondness for “The Brave Little Toaster,” but there’s a noticeable absence that leaves fans scratching their heads—why isn’t the original film available on Disney+? Oddly enough, while Disney+ offers the sequels “The Brave Little Toaster to the Rescue” and “The Brave Little Toaster Goes to Mars,” the beloved 1987 original is missing due to a complex and rather frustrating reason. Although Disney financed the film as an independent production, the rights are actually owned by Hyperion Pictures, and it’s not being actively distributed either digitally or physically anywhere.

Part of the reason for this rarity is that “The Brave Little Toaster” was ahead of its time. When animators John Lasseter and Glen Keane initially pitched the concept to Disney’s leadership, their groundbreaking idea of a CGI animated film was rejected. Disney executives didn’t see the need to embrace a new animation style that wasn’t necessarily faster or cheaper. This decision led to Lasseter leaving Disney and the project almost being shelved. Fortunately, Hyperion Pictures, co-founded by former Disney employees Tom Wilhite and Willard Carroll, picked up the project, albeit with a drastically reduced budget of just under $6 million from an original $12 million.

To complicate matters further, Disney didn’t want “The Brave Little Toaster” to directly compete with its main intellectual properties. As a result, they pushed its television premiere ahead, effectively quashing its potential box office success. Skouras Pictures, which initially planned to distribute the film for evening showings suited for young adults and college-aged audiences, withdrew from this plan because it no longer seemed financially viable.

Because of these setbacks, “The Brave Little Toaster” never enjoyed the commercial success or widespread acclaim it deserved. Strangely enough, while its sequels are readily available on Disney+, the one film that kickstarted the franchise remains elusive. As the years have gone by, obtaining a copy of the original has become increasingly difficult, relegating it to a cult classic status despite its innovative contributions to animation.

So, what do you think? Should Disney make an effort to bring this pioneering film to their streaming service? We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below. And don’t forget to share this story with fellow Disney and animation enthusiasts!