It looks like this year’s Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets will contain a very unexpected easter egg to The Fifth Element.Valerian is not only the newest film from writer and director Luc Besson, it’s the first time the filmmaker has tackled a cosmic sci-fi story like this since his 1997 cult classic. Fans of Besson have been peppering the filmmaker with questions about a follow-up film or sequel ever since its release, and with Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, they looked to be getting at least the closest version of that they could.
While The Fifth Element was based on an original story and concept by Besson, however, Valerian is an adaptation of the beloved French comic book series, Valerian and Laureline, which ran for over 43 years. Starring Dane DeHaan and Cara Delevingne as the titular galactic special agents, the film promises to be a space opera adventure film unlike any other that audiences will likely see in theaters this year.
In anticipation of the film’s late-July release as well, STX Entertainment released a brand new poster for Valerian earlier this week, featuring multiple of the film’s main and supporting characters. But as it turns out (H/T /Film), the poster also features a very small Fifth Element Easter egg/connection. As you can see by zooming in on the image – in the top right side of the poster, there’s a sign promoting some kind of establishment in the film that looks to be named “Korben’s,” which fans of The Fifth Element fans will recognize as being the name of Bruce Willis’ character in that film. Take a look for yourself down below:
Now, it’s impossible to know for sure if this is merely Besson winking at fans by including an Easter egg that will appear in the background at one point, or if this can be considered confirmation that The Fifth Element and Valerian somehow take place in the same cinematic universe. If that’s the case, then could Bruce Willis be making a surprise cameo appearance in Valerian, reprising the role of Korben in the new film?
It wouldn’t be the first time that Willis has made a shocking return to a beloved character of his this year, but there’s really no way of knowing right now. Up until this point, in fact, there have been very little noticeable connections between Valerian and The Fifth Element in any of the trailers and promotional materials, other than the natural creative similarities being from the same writer and director create. So, for now, it’s best to take it as is and wait to see what wonders Besson’s cooked up when Valerian arrives later this year.