Many major studios love to scatter jokes and references, more commonly known as “Easter Eggs,” throughout their movies. It could be argued that no production company is better known for their Easter Eggs than the world famous Disney. While a popular thing for people to do is look for the hidden Mickeys that have been scattered throughout the popular Disney parks and movies, there are many more Easter Eggs to catch along the way: from well-known characters popping up in other movies to references of real locations, Disney has been great at sneaking in tributes to their previous works.
Thankfully, there’s no need to go back and re-watch every Disney film to see all the Easter Eggs. Thanks to the internet, the Easter Eggs Disney has slipped in over the past few decades have already been collected and compiled! Some of these have been known for years but a few will undoubtedly catch you off guard. We have found 28 Disney Easter Eggs for you in the list below; how many of them did you catch?
#28 – Which Way?
Being lost in the woods is one of the worst things imaginable. If only you had some sort of sign to find your way home when you’re lost. During “Beauty and the Beast,” two of the characters, Maurice and Philippe, get lost in the woods themselves, and come across a sign that points them to the nearest cities, and if you look closely, one of the signs points toward Anaheim (a city in California), which is where Disneyland is located! There is no place like home, Disneyland might just be better.
#27 – Tea Party
Though “Tarzan” wasn’t a long lasting Disney cartoon, it actually did quite well at the box office. Most people still remember “Tarzan” from its soundtrack performed by Phil Collins. During one of the scenes where Tarzan’s friends are enjoying a buffet, if you look closely you can see that Mrs. Potts and Chip from “Beauty and the Beast” make a surprise appearance. This is one of Disney’s earliest Easter Egg for a lot of us, and it just couldn’t be cooler to see universes collide!
#26 – Mardi Gras
“The Princess and the Frog” is one of the most unique Disney movies in recent years, and maybe even one of the most unique ever. The Princess and the Frog was the first Disney film with an African-American princess as the main character, and it was set in the real life city of New Orleans, Louisiana. In the depiction of New Orleans’ world famous Mardi Gras parade, one of the floats was King Triton from “The Little Mermaid.” Marco? Polo? Fish out of water! Fish out of water!
#25 – Real Boy
“Tangled” has an important legacy at Disney; it was the film that helped revitalize the Disney animated movie series, as a new team of writers was brought on board to help establish the new computer generated style that has become so popular today. If you pay attention during one of the musical scenes of this “Rapunzel” based movie, you’ll catch a glimpse of a familiar character, Pinocchio, sitting in the rafters which combines the new age style of Tangled with the old ages of Disney, thus cementing its status as the beginning of the new era.
#24 – Familiar Furniture
While “The Princess and the Frog” may have taken place in an actual United States city, there were still plenty of nods to the Disney universe throughout the film. In the first scene of “The Princess and the Frog,” where Bourbon Street is being shown, there is a familiar rug that is hanging from one of the balconies; if you look closely during the scene, you’ll recognize it as the magic carpet from the film “Aladdin.” New Orleans is whole new world for this ol’ rug.
#23 – Old Foe
In “Hercules,” the son of the gods was sent to Earth to help protect the mortals from the devastation of Hades. To help establish himself as a hero, Hercules received some training from the goat trainer, Philoctetes (voiced by Danny DeVito of “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia”). After gaining fame and receiving the adoration of the people, Hercules is shown wearing a lion skin cape, and when it is removed it’s revealed to be the evil antagonistic lion, “Scar,” from “The Lion King.” I guess Scar wasn’t prepared for Hercules.
#22 – Wedding Guests
“The Little Mermaid” was one of the biggest hits in the 1980s, coming out during the final year of the decade. In The Little Mermaid, Ariel makes a deal with a sea witch to become human so that she may live with her crush, Prince Eric. During Ariel and Prince Eric’s wedding, two of the guests are The King and the Grand Duke, both of who are minor characters in the classic Disney movie “Cinderella.” This may actually be more than an Easter Egg, and assert that Cinderella and The Little Mermaid take place during the same time period.
#21 – Old Bill
“The Great Mouse Detective” was released in 1986, and surprisingly didn’t feature Mickey Mouse, even though the main characters of the film were all either mice or rats. The Great Mouse Detective isn’t widely considered a classic, but there is a major cameo in the film. Bill the Lizard from the famous “Alice in Wonderland” makes an appearance as part of Ratigan’s crew; I bet his job was to take care of the “bugs” detectives placed to spy on the crew: food and payment all in one.
#20 – Beastly Toy
“Aladdin” was a massively successful film in 1992, and one of the notable main characters was Princess Jasmine’s father, The Sultan. Given the fact that the Sultan was wealthy and could afford anything that he could ever want, he had a collection of toys, one of which was a reference to a film that had come out just one year prior: Beast from “Beauty and the Beast.” If I was the Sultan, I would have every Lego ever made. Did they even have Lego’s during the time of Aladdin?
#19 – Found Him
“Brother Bear” was released in 2003 and followed the story of Kenai, a young boy who was turned into a bear after having tracked one down and killed it. While learning the ways of the bear, Kenai runs through some people that are fishing for salmon in a nearby stream. While most of the fish shooting up out of the water in this picture are indeed salmon, if you watch carefully you can see that one of the fish that is splashing around is the clownfish Nemo from “Finding Nemo.”
#18 – Disclaimer
The Disney film “Frozen” was so popular that kids are still singing its songs and quoting its lines years later. One line from “Frozen” that a lot of kids seem to quote came from the character Kristoff, who claims that all men eat their boogers. While the credits of the film are rolling, there is a disclaimer from Disney stating that they don’t actually agree with the opinion of anybody eating their own boogers which is a solid legal tactic, and hopefully given Frozen’s popularity, children will actually listen.
#17 – Garbage Day
The first “Toy Story” movie almost saw the demise of the toys at the hands of Andy’s neighbor, Sid; while Sid doesn’t make an appearance in the second film, during the final film of the trilogy Sid can be seen wearing his signature shirt from the first film, and is working as a garbage man. Personally, I find it a little sad that Sid never got to become an engineer because he had quite the knack for creativity, and showed that he knew how to build functional electronic toys; regardless of how cruelly those creations were built.
#16 – Cute Note
Sometimes Pixar and Disney like to hide things so well that you have to pause and watch a scene frame by frame to make sure you catch everything. In the final movie from the Toy Story trilogy, aptly titled Toy Story 3, you can see several notes printed on a bulletin board, and if you look closely, one of them is signed by Carl and Ellie, the couple from the movie “Up.” Whether or not this Easter Egg means Carl and Ellie are related to Andy remains to be seen, but it certainly is a cool little nod to the Pixar Universe.
#15 – True Love
According to a 1993 issue of a magazine that interviewed Walt Disney, it was revealed that the characters Mickey and Minnie Mouse were married in their private lives; the voices of the two characters in the modern era, Wayne Allwine and Russi Taylor, are also actually married in real life. Wayne and Russi met while they were working together as voice actors for the characters, and the love spawned from there. Nothing could be more appropriate than Mickey and Minnie mouse bringing people together, just like how Disney does with all of our families.
#14 – Haunted Hercules
Some of the biggest reasons that “Hercules” is still memorable for those who are in their 20s and 30s, are because of the many great songs and voices that originated from that film. During one of the songs being performed by the muses, they can be seen as busts sitting on pedestals; this is the same way the pedestals are aligned when you ride on The Haunted Mansion ride at the Disney Park. Mixing the real world, and its animated world is just one of the ways Disney remains king of Easter Eggs.
#13 – Plot Twist
At the beginning of the movie “Aladdin,” the first person you hear is simply known as The Peddler, a character that isn’t seen again until the end of the film. The voice of The Peddler should sound familiar because it was voiced by Robin Williams, who also voiced the Genie. The original plan was for The Peddler to have a big reveal at the end where the storyteller was actually the genie. Eventually the sub plot was scrapped, but Williams’s voice was kept for the eccentric character.
#12 – Monstrous Carvings
In 2001 Pixar came out with another smash hit in the form of “Monsters, Inc.” which starred the big and lovable James Sullivan, who was otherwise known as Sully. In the more recent film, “Brave,” the main character’s mother is turned into a bear, and Merida (Brave herself) has to save her. The witch who was able to transform Merida’s mother, had many old knickknacks in her hut, including a wood carving of the Monster’s Inc. character, Sully. This Easter Egg is actually the basis of a huge Pixar conspiracy theory: check it out online!
#11 – Jungle Gargoyle
“The Hunchback of Notre Dame” was a truly depressing story when it was first penned back in 1831, but Disney turned things around to create a much happier ending. During The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Quasimodo is seen rescuing Esmerelda, and hanging from a gargoyle on a tall building; while the gargoyle Quasimodo is hanging from is a normal one, the gargoyle next to him was Pumbaa from “The Lion King.” There were definitely some worries during this tense scene, despite what Pumbaa would have you believe.
#10 – Chinese Food
Disney had yet to really stretch out into Asian culture, but in 2002 they released a smash-hit entrenched in the culture of the Pacific. “Lilo & Stitch” was based on the real life setting of Hawaii, where Asian culture is particularly prominent as it is part of the Pacific Rim. While Lilo and her new alien friend are walking down the street, an interesting restaurant can be seen: Mulan Wok. Disney calling the restaurant “Mulan Wok” is a nod to a previous film, “Mulan.” Do you think that they server moo shu in Mulan Wok, or would that be a bit too grim?
#9 – Knotted Up
In an odd film from 1964 known as “The Incredible Mr. Limpet,” Don Knotts plays a character that is turned into a fish inn order to help the United States Navy destroy submarines that belonged to Nazi Germany; it’s not a story many kids are familiar with, so they probably missed it in 1989 during “The Little Mermaid,” when the fish from the “The Incredible Mr. Limpet” made a short appearance during one of the film’s songs. Children would become far more familiar with Don Knotts when he played Mayor Turkey Lurkey in Disney’s “Chicken Little.”
#8 – Why Should I Worry?
Regardless of how busy Pongo was in the movie “101 Dalmatians,” he somehow managed to have time to go to New York City for a song in the 1988 classic film, “Oliver & Company.” During the song “Why Should I Worry?” several dogs make an appearance on the streets to get their groove on, one of them is Pongo, who is attempting to break free from his leash; thank goodness the entire 101 dalmatians didn’t appear during the the song, or it would probably still be going!
#7 – Helping Paw
As you may be able to tell, dogs like to make crossover appearances in other Disney movies, probably due to how iconic many of their personalities are. The Scottish Terrier, Jock, was one of the leading characters from the classic, “Lady and the Tramp,” and was known for being a loyal and helpful ol’ pup. Jock was so helpful that he showed up to help Pongo’s pups escape from the evil Cruella de Ville in “101 Dalmatians;” not a bad job for an old hound dog!
#6 – Supportive Friends
If you go to any of the Disney theme parks across the globe, one neat thing you can do is search for the hidden Mickey Mouse silhouettes. Mickey appears in movies as well as the parks, like when he appeared in the crowd during a performance in “A Goofy Movie;” Mickey can be hard to spot in the crowd since there are a slew of characters surrounding him, but there’s no mistaking his signature ears, and that’s for good reason: Walt had a rule where his distinctive two ears must be shown from any angle, at all times!
#5 – Crocodile Rock
During the concert in “A Goofy Movie,” another familiar face pops up, but this time it isn’t in the crowd nor is it a mouse, in fact, it’s far more dangerous! In the movie “Peter Pan,” the pirate Captain Hook had a fear of crocodiles, especially the one that ate his hand. The crocodile that ate Hook’s hand, known as Tick-Tock, also had a clock in his stomach, and shows up behind the scenes in the concert hall in “A Goofy Movie.” How Tick-Tock escaped Neverland, the world may never know.
#4 – Stories On Stories
Charlotte La Bouff (not to be confused with Shia LeBeouf) was the southern belle type from “The Princess and the Frog,” who was friends with Fiona. While Charlotte’s room is being shown, you can see that she has multiple books sitting on a shelf. The book on the very end of the shelf is the classic tale “Rapunzel,” which served as the inspiration for the movie “Tangled” that would come out almost a year later. Disney is amazing at putting nods to later films in their current work, and it’s always a thrill to hunt for their next possible movie!
#3 – I’m In The Movie!
Earlier we mentioned that Sully from “Monsters, Inc.” made an appearance in the film, “Brave.” Sully isn’t the only Monster’s, Inc. character to make an appearance in another movie as Mike Wazowski shows up on the desk of one of the characters in the movie “Frozen,” as a little wooden figure. Although it is an inside joke that Mike never fully appears in things that he is featured in, he is fully on display in Frozen; he must have payed someone quite well with the money from his play.
#2 – Familiar Friends
Anna and Elsa from “Frozen” had an accident when they were eight years old, which caused Elsa to have to wear white gloves to conceal her powers. When she turned 21 years old, Elsa had a coronation where many notable guests attended. Two of the guests that attended Elsa’s coronation were Rapunzel and Flynn Rider from “Tangled,” but it can be hard to catch them, as Rapunzel is seen with her short hair from the end of the film, instead of her traditional long locks.
#1 – Historic Tools
Speaking of Rapunzel, there is an interesting scene from “Tangled” while she still has her trademark hair style. While Rapunzel was trapped in the tower by her mother, if you look closely you can catch a glimpse of a familiar item: the spinning wheel that appeared in the film “Sleeping Beauty;” this is yet another nod to Disney’s return to animated form during the production of Tangled. Where Tangled started the new age renaissance for Disney, we hope it never ends, and there are even more Easter Eggs to discover in the future!