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Winthrop High School's Premier News Site Since 2019

The Viking Times

Winthrop High School's Premier News Site Since 2019

The Viking Times

Movie Easter Eggs: The Easter Surprises Are Not Over Yet!

Courtesy of: Brightside
Say the names of these characters really fast. It sounds like “Hans Christian Andersen,” the author of “The Snow Queen” (the fairy tale that inspired “Frozen”)!

If you’ve been here before, there is no doubt that The Viking Times doesn’t shy away from the entertainment industry.  Having read those articles, you’ll know I am a massive fan of movies.  As I pour myself over movies, I noticed that I’ve become a bit of a pedant (I’ve begun to take pride in that), constantly wanting to know behind-the-scenes details, secrets about filming, and hidden details that only the most attentive views will notice, otherwise known as Easter eggs.

Although surprises in movies were common well before video games (*ahem* Alfred Hitchcock), the term “Easter egg” was pegged by Atari in 1980 with the release of their game, “Adventure.” When the Easter egg is found, it reads, “Created by Warren Robinett.”  In movies, an Easter egg is something placed within the movie by the film director, often a subtle nod to another film, a person or cameo, or a hidden message that only mega-fans might notice. Easter was this past Sunday and many of us received Easter eggs, sometimes filled with candy, others with money.  The surprises are not over, for I am about to give you eight Easter eggs and surprises in popular movies that I found most interesting.


The Birds – 1963

Alfred Hitchcock with Geoffrey and Stanley.

Esteemed film director Alfred Hitchcock is a staple in the late Golden Age of movies, some of his most well-known films include North by NorthwestPsycho, and The Birds.  From the very beginning of his career, when he was making silent films, he made cameos in his films as an extra.  Whether he is sitting at a desk, a subway passenger, or standing outside of a building, Hitchcock has made at least 40 cameos in his 53 surviving films (The Mountain Eagle is one complete Hitchcock film that is lost to history and there may be others).  One of his most famous appearances is The Birds, arguably one of the most classic horror films known today.  Hitchcock can be seen walking out a of pet show with his two dogs, just as Melanie Daniels (Tippi Hendren).  His short appearance happens to be one of the most iconic Easter eggs in all of his movies.  The director’s dogs, Sealhaym Terriers Geoffery and Stanley, got a cameo!  Hitchcock’s appearances in his films started in his 1928 film Easy Virtue when an actor had to drop out last minute.  Hitchcock stepped in for the actor and has been appearing in most of his films ever since.


Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark – 1981

Steven Spielberg’s one of many “Star Wars” Easter eggs.

One of the most famous franchises was created by George Lucas and Steven Spielberg, two of the greatest masterminds of cinema.  The Indiana Jones films are loaded with Easter eggs, often relating to George Lucas’ Star Wars.  Although Spielberg directed the first four films in the Indiana Jones saga, Lucas was kept close by during production, overseeing everything.  In Raiders of the Lost Ark, Spielberg makes a point to Easter egg C-3PO and R2-D2 during the scene with the Well of Souls.  The droids fit seamlessly into the Egyptian hieroglyphics inscribed on the wall.


Scream – 1996

Linda Blair as “Obnoxious Reporter.”

Scream, the classic horror film released in 1996, has a very elusive nod to another horror class, The Exorcist.  Linda Blair, the actress of Regan MacNeil in The Exorcist, has a very short, two-line part in Scream.  She is the reporter when Sidney, the girl whose boyfriend is the murderer, steps out of a car on the anniversary of her mother’s murder.  Blair is uncredited in the credits, but on IMDb, she appears as “Obnoxious Reporter.”  The scream queen’s appearance was complete with crucifix earrings, a nod to her famous The Exorcist role.


Mulan – 1998

Mushu in front of the animator’s names. (Courtesy of: Tumblr)

Disney’s original Mulan is a beloved animated classic among generations and many more to come.  An underrated setting in Mulan with underrated scenes happens to be in the Fa Family Temple.  Here, we meet the comical Mushu, everyone’s favorite sidekick, and Mulan’s ancestors as they watch over her on her journey to defeat the Huns (cue “I’ll Make A Man Out of You”).  In the family temple, we see Chinese characters inscribed on the gravestones where the spirits of Mulan’s ancestors arise from.  Many of us assumed that the characters engraved are the names of the Fa ancestors, but they are the names of some of the animators!  This is a nice Easter egg to give the animators of the movie all the credit they deserve.


Toy Story and Toy Story 3 – 1995 and 2010

See the resemblance?

Probably one of my favorite series of my childhood also has its Easter eggs – I didn’t notice them until I was halfway through my teenage years.  Both Easter eggs that I’m going to show you have to do with Sid, the kid that destroys all of his toys (I hated him as a kid).  The first is in the first film which was released in 1995.  When Woody and Buzz Lightyear are tiptoeing across the hall, trying to escape Sid’s house (and the aggressive bull terrier Scud), the carpet beneath them silences their footsteps.  But, the carpet is the same as in the iconic scene “Come Play With Us” in The Shining.  Why is the carpet the same?  We don’t know.  Maybe it’s to add the unsettling area of Sid’s house?

Could it be?!

In Toy Story 3, we are met with the sadness of giving up a childhood toy.  Andy sorts through his toys before going off to college, throwing them in a storage bag to be put in the attic.  His mom mistakes the bag for garbage and takes it outside to the curb before the garbage truck comes.  Woody, being the good friend that he is, races out of the house in an attempt to save them.  When the garbage truck does come, we see a teenager singing along to a song.  He is wearing a black T-shirt with a white skull.  Diehard Toy Story fans can only recognize that shirt as Sid’s in the first Toy Story.  Coin-SID-ence (not sorry in the slightest)?  I think not!


Barbie – 2023

Courtesy of: Reddit

Greta Gerwig’s Barbie is the movie that has defined our generation.  From the iconic outfits to every Barbie imaginable, there are other nods, more subtle, to the doll’s empire.  One such Easter egg can be found when Barbie can seen driving out of Barbieland in her pink Corvette, venturing on toward the real world.  When the dashboard of her car is shown briefly, the odometer reads “030959.”  On March 9th, 1959, Mattel released the first Barbie doll (it was only $3!).  A clever Easter egg to the history of the iconic doll.



Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire – 2024

“Ghostbusters: Afterlife” featuring a screening of “Cannibal Girls” (upper right corner). I could not find an image of the “Frozen Empire’ reference.

Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire is the newest film on this list, starring Paul Rudd, Carrie Coon, and of course Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Ernie Hudson, and Annie Potts.  The movie follows Ghostbusters: Afterlife which was released in 2021.  The two recent Ghostbusters movies follow the life of Callie Spengler (Carrie Coon) and her two kids who get roped up in her late father’s, Egon Spengler’s, hobby as a Ghostbuster.  The latest film is dedicated to Ivan Reitman, the director of the first Ghostbusters movies, who died in 2022 which makes this Easter egg all the more better.  The Easter egg involved Reitman and his second movie as a director, Cannibal Girls.  In Frozen Empire, Paul Rudd’s character, Gary, picks out a movie for a family movie night with Callie and her family.  When he finds a movie, he holds up a VHS of Cannibal Girls, a nod to the late Reitman.  This is not the only time Cannibal Girls has appeared in the franchise.  In Ghostbusters II and Ghostbusters: AfterlifeCannibal Girls can be seen on movie theater marquees.  If there is another installment, maybe we’ll see a bit more nods to Ivan Reitman’s works.

Easter eggs in movies serve as entertaining hidden gems among the audience’s favorite films.  These surprises contribute to the cinematic effect all movies relay to their viewers.  If and when you watch any of the movies above, maybe you’ll look out for more Easter eggs.  In the meantime, I will be on the lookout for more Easter eggs – I love good pedantry that only movies can allow.

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About the Contributor
Shannon Raneri, Writer
Hello!  My name is Shannon Raneri and I am a junior at Winthrop High School.  I am an avid writer and I am very happy to contribute my writing to The Viking Times, our Winthrop community, and beyond.  I write a variety of topics from current events, to sports, and entertainment.   On the rare occasion when I am not writing, you can find me reading, playing with my dogs, or watching "Friends" for the umpteenth time. Thank you for reading The Viking Times!

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    Chele BernerApr 5, 2024 at 9:30 am

    Loved, loved, loved this article!!!!