No writer can predict the future, but in today’s world, it’s almost impossible to tell a story without injecting pop culture references somewhere. They aren’t always used properly, but sometimes, an inside joke or throwaway line from a writer, director or actor can wind up being more relevant or prophetic than anyone could have ever known.
Here are Screenrant’s Movies That Actually Predicted Other Films.
Tuff Turf & The Avengers: Age of Ultron
To find a new villain to tear Marvel’s heavyweight super-team apart in The Avengers: Age of Ultron, director Joss Whedon turned to the super- intelligent robot Ultron, a creation brought to life by actor James Spader. His early leading roles as a handsome bad boy were far from Ultron, but in 1985’s Tuff Turf, a bit of graffiti offered a strange hint of what lay ahead in the actor’s future. “The New Avengers” tag was obviously a play on the Marvel comic series, but Spader’s character didn’t have time to look it over, since he was mugged soon after.
But who showed up to patch his wounds? That’s right, Robert Downey, Jr., sharing the scene with Spader a full thirty years before they’d do battle as Iron Man and Ultron.
Following & Batman Begins
Christopher Nolan made himself one of Hollywood’s most respected directors in record time, but even geniuses need to start somewhere. For Nolan, that was Following, a story about a young man who spies on a well-dressed burglar until he’s swept into a life of crime himself. The low-budget movie gave plenty of hints at Nolan’s future style, with a time-jumping structure, and a well-dressed man named Cobb – the same name as Leonardo DiCaprio’s character in Inception.
But the tiniest detail is the most shocking: one apartment broken into by the characters is marked not with a number, but the Batman symbol. The director could never have guessed that seven years later he’d be on his way to making a nearly two billion-dollar Batman trilogy, and changing comic book movies forever. The film’s star, Jeremy Theobald even got a cameo as a water board technician in Batman Begins.
Halloween & The Thing
In the world of horror movies, there’s no understating just how much John Carpenter’s Halloween changed the game. Following the masked killer Michael Myers as he went on a Halloween killing spree would go on to become one of the greatest horror movies of all time, but the film also included a hint that Carpenter would be known for more than one masterpiece. Throughout the movie, the kids are shown watching the 1951 movie The Thing From Another World, a story of an alien stranded in the Arctic, and the men who find it. The title card alone should tip off horror fans to this strange coincidence, since it’s the same movie Carpenter would be hired to remake just four years later in 1982. And just like the classic slasher flick, The Thing‘s place in horror history is beyond guaranteed.
The Terminal & Star Trek
The story of a stranded airline passenger making his home in an airport terminal was inspired by a real event, but may end up being better remembered for predicting the future. Among the employees befriended by Tom Hanks’ character is an immigration officer played by a young Zoe Saldana. When Hanks questions her for a friend admiring her from a distance, she lets a secret slip: she’s a serious Star Trek fan. ‘Yeoman Rand’ may be her cosplay of choice, but just five years later, the Star Trek-lover would be cast as Lieutenant Uhura in J.J. Abrams’ big screen reboot. It’s a good things she’s a fan of Vulcans, since her romance with Spock ended up playing a major role in the series.
Braindead & King Kong
Long before Peter Jackson was directing the Lord of the Rings movies, he was still finding ways to inject big ideas into small-scale productions. In the case of Braindead, the story of an exotic rat-monkey whose bite turns people into zombies, Jackson opened the film with a throwback to the classic King Kong. Instead of a colossal ape, it was a tiny creature he was stealing from the enraging natives, but the reference was clear. Luckily for the director, he would get the chance to repeat the homage with a much, much bigger budget. The 2005 remake of King Kong may be a more impressive sight to behold, but getting to reference a classic film, then being entrusted with remaking it is any director’s dream come true.
The Godfather & Raging Bull
It’s the job of Hollywood production designers and set dressers to make a modern street look like it’s been sent back decades in time. Usually, their job is done if you don’t notice it at all – but sometimes, they’re just as likely to make an incredible prediction. When Vito Corleone goes to shop for some oranges just before being wounded in The Godfather, a poster promoting an upcoming boxing match can is prominently featured in frame. Once movie fans realize it’s advertising a fight of Jake LaMotta, things get interesting. Robert De Niro would win his first Oscar for playing the younger version of Corleone in The Godfather Part 2 two years later – and his second for portraying LaMotta in Raging Bull four years after that. So even though De Niro auditioned for the movie and was cut loose, his two greatest roles sharing the screen has to make up for the loss.
Raising Arizona & The Hudsucker Proxy
Long before Nicolas Cage and the Coen Brothers were household names, they joined forces to deliver Raising Arizona, one seriously underrated, screwball comedy following Cage’s character from a career stick-up man to a loving husband and hopeful father. Part of his going straight means finding a job at Hudsucker Industries, according to the name stenciled on his uniform. Fans of the Coen Brothers will recognize the name from the directors’ other film, The Hudsucker Proxy, set at the same company. But Raising Arizona came first by a full seven years. The brothers had developed the Hudsucker script with director Sam Raimi years before making either film, and decided to plant an easter egg ahead of time – one that will continue to confuse new fans for years to come.
Forgetting Sarah Marshall & The Muppets
Jason Segel proved his leading man comedy chops in Forgetting Sarah Marshall by showing that musicians don’t even get dumped like the rest of us, turning to a piano to cry out his heart when the girl the movie’s named for breaks his heart. But this is a comedy, which means one song he uses to pour out his grief is the theme to The Muppets. He didn’t need to cry for long – just three years after weeping through The Muppets‘ theme song, Segel would be co-writing and starring in the group’s return to the big screen in The Muppets movie. Sarah never knew what she was missing.
So what do you think of our list? Did we miss any eerie predictions, jokes, or teases of future films or roles? Let us know in our comment section and don’t forget to subscribe to our channel for more videos like this one.