‘Ready Player One’ Crew Sneaks Steven Spielberg Easter Eggs Into Film Against The Director’s Wishes

The upcoming “Ready Player One” looks to break the imaginary record for most Easter Eggs hidden in a film. With everything from “Back to the Future” to “The Iron Giant” being referenced overtly in the film, director Steven Spielberg has gone on record saying that there are even more references to pop culture hidden throughout the film. However, he also had a rule going into the film—none of Spielberg’s own films were to be included. Apparently, his crew didn’t like that mandate. According to a report by Entertainment Weekly, the crew behind “Ready Player One” did everything in their power to sneak Spielberg film references into scenes. From hidden “Gremlins” grafitti to copies of “Schindler’s List” novels in the background, the crew’s goal was to see how many of these Easter Eggs snuck by the watchful eye of Spielberg. And they weren’t always successful, either. “We had a sly Fratelli’s Diner, but we got caught,” production designer Adam Stockhausen says. “He nixed it.” This is, of course, a reference to “The Goonies.” In reference to the “Gremlins” reference, Spielberg said, ““I think a lot of the digital artists were trying to get some of their favorite ’80s cultural references in there, you know? And having seen every shot 30 times as we go through all the different steps from pre-viz to animatic to final, I started noticing little things. They snuck a gremlin in.” He continued, “I said, ‘Well, I guess it’s too late to take that guy out.’ So he survived the cut.” A lot has been made about the nostalgia at play in “Ready Player One.” Once the film’s released, you’ll have eagle-eyed viewers going frame by frame to see if they can name all the hidden characters and film references. However, Spielberg doesn’t want the actual plot of the film to be weighed down by all the little Easter Eggs. “The movie isn’t really about nostalgia,” Spielberg concludes. “Nostalgia is only the window dressing — out your side windows, but the movie takes place out your windshield. It’s a race. It’s a competition for control of the OASIS.”