Steven Spielberg's Ready Player One is chock full of references and easter eggs to classic movies, and now Warner Bros. Pictures is taking the film's marketing campaign to the next level by releasing posters that explicitly confirm those references and even hype them up. The filmmaker's latest movie is based on a script from Zak Penn (X2: X-Men United, The Avengers) and Ernest Cline, who wrote the original Ready Player One novel that was published in 2011.
Taking place in the year 2045, Ready Player One follows teenager Wade Watts (Tye Sheridan) as he attempts to complete Anorak's Quest in the OASIS - a virtual reality world that allows people to escape their realities - which was developed by the OASIS' creator, James Halliday (Mark Rylance). Whoever completes the quest and finds the Easter Egg inherits Halliday's fortune and ownership of the OASIS. Ready Player One was originally slated to release in December 2017 but was pushed back to March 2018 to avoid competition with Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Because of that, the studio didn't start marketing the film until SDCC 2017, where they released the first trailer for Ready Player One. And while a new trailer and a few promos have released ever since, the studio is taking the film's marketing up a notch with almost a dozen new posters.
Eleven new posters for Ready Player One (below) were found in Santa Monica that salute classic movies that each play a part in the film (and the book). The posters pay homage to The Matrix (1999), The Goonies (1985), The Lost Boys (1987), The Iron Giant (1999), Rambo: First Blood Part II (1985), Risky Business (1983), Back to the Future (1985), Blade Runner (1982), Bullitt (1968), The Breakfast Club (1985), and Beetlejuice (1988). Take a look:
As previously mentioned, the posters were found on the side of street walls in Santa Monica, CA, and aren't available online at the moment. However, it's possible that Warner Bros. will be bringing the posters to SXSW 2018 next week (just a few weeks ahead of the film's release at the end of the month), in which case the studio might release hi-res versions of the posters online. And what's interesting is that, with the exception of Bullitt, which released in 1968, all the movies spoofed released either in the 1980s or 1990s - two decades that greatly inspire the story in Ready Player One. Of course, there are also homages to present-day entertainment properties, especially video games such as Halo and Overwatch.
Ready Player One is shaping up to be one of the biggest nostalgia-driven films in history, thanks to its countless references and easter eggs. However, all of that is only part of the story. The film also includes the classic trope of a rebellious group trying to overthrow an evil corporation, except this time it's filled with dozens (if not hundreds) of well-placed easter eggs - some literal, some not. Since Ready Player One is partly an original story, it's unclear how everything will end, but it's supposed to be a faithful adaptation of the book as well. We'll just have to wait and see how the aforementioned movies play into the story.
- Ready Player One (2018) release date: Mar 29, 2018