Mater and the Ghostlight

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Mater and the Ghostlight
Poster for Mater and the Ghostlight
Poster for Mater and the Ghostlight
Directed by John Lasseter
Dan Scanlon (co-director)
Produced by Darla K. Anderson
Mark Nielsen
Story by Joe Ranft
John Lasseter
Dan Scanlon
Starring Larry the Cable Guy
Owen Wilson
Paul Newman
Bonnie Hunt
Cheech Marin
Michael Wallis
Music by Bruno Coon
Brad Paisley (Behind the Clouds)
Edited by Torbin Xan Bullock
Distributed by Walt Disney Home Entertainment
Release date
  • November 7, 2006 (2006-11-07) (with Cars DVD)
Running time
7 minutes
Language English

Mater and the Ghostlight is a 2006 Pixar computer-animated short created for the DVD of Cars, which was released in the United States and Canada on November 7, 2006.[1] The short, set in the Cars world, tells a story of Mater being haunted by a mysterious blue light.


The short film opens with Mater playing pranks on the other residents of Radiator Springs. This sequence culminates with Mater teasing Lightning McQueen as if he had seen "the Ghostlight," a Route 66 legend recounted to Pixar by Dean Walker of the Kansas Historic Route 66 Association.[2]

Sheriff admonishes him for mocking the urban legend, but Mater reminds Lightning that it isn't real. Sheriff points out that it IS real, shocking them, and then tells everyone the tale of the Ghostlight. The rest of the gang say goodnight and turn off all the store lights, leaving a nervous and scared Mater all alone in the dark.

During the body of the short, mayhem ensues as Mater is pursued by the Ghostlight, ultimately revealed to be just a lantern affixed to Mater's towing cable by Lightning and Guido. He drives into Willy's Butte and wakes Frank and his tractors and goes into slow motion where he sounds like a bull. The other residents of Radiator Springs watch as Mater drives around frantically with the "Ghostlight" on his tail, before Mater tires himself out and discovers the truth. The cars tell him it was all a prank to pay him back for all his pranks he played on them. Sheriff gently tells Mater that the only thing to be scared of on Route 66 is "his imagination." Doc jokingly adds that all Mater really had to fear was "The Screaming Banshee" before they all leave Mater, alone and frightened once again.

In a post-credits scene, Mater actually sees The Screaming Banshee but, not realizing it is him, warns him of the Banshee before departing, leaving the monstrous truck confused.


Non-speaking characters appearing in the film include Luigi, Guido, Flo, Fillmore, Lizzie, Mack, Frank, and Red.


Mater and the Ghostlight premiered on November 7, 2006, on Cars DVD as a special feature.[1] On November 6, 2007, it got its first Blu-ray releases, attached as a special to Cars[3] and on Pixar Short Films Collection, Volume 1.[4]


  1. ^ a b "SMASH HIT #1 ANIMATED MOVIE OF THE YEAR!" (Press release). Pixar. August 10, 2006. Archived from the original on December 24, 2008. Retrieved July 27, 2011. 
  2. ^ Scott Meeker (June 10, 2006). "Riverton man inspired 'Cars' character". Joplin Globe. 
  3. ^ "Cars Blu-ray". November 6, 2007. Retrieved July 27, 2011. 
  4. ^ "Pixar Short Films Collection: Vol. 1 Blu-ray". November 6, 2007. Retrieved July 27, 2011. 

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