I am not a big fan of Cars. Perhaps this was obvious. I am, however, a big fan of little hidden tidbits, and if Pixar is great at something, it’s attention to detail. I love spotting their subtle references to earlier movies, and even the direct references, like the drive-in scene at the end of the original Cars, are very well-done. One of my favorite parts of rewatching the Toy Story series is seeing some of the background toys, and I see something new every time.
This list of little Easter Eggs actually makes me want to see Cars 2. I’m not terribly knowledgeable about cars (ladies, am I right?), so the references to specific models are a bit over my head, but the rest of the tidbits seem pretty funny, and are probably more so in context. Hit the jump to check out the full list![Via /Film]
- NOD TO THE NUMBER — The number A113, which refers to John Lasseter, Brad Bird, Pete Docter and Andrew Stanton’s former classroom at CalArts, makes an appearance in every Pixar film. In “Cars 2,” you can see A113 in two places: as the number on Mater’s license plate, and as the number on Siddeley the spy jet’s tail fin.
- THAT’S INCREDIBLE — In Radiator Springs, Mater drives past the Radiator Springs Drive-in, and the movie displayed on the marquee is “The Incredimobiles,” a car-ified version of Disney?Pixar’s 2004 film “The Incredibles.”
- TAKE OUT OR DELIVERY — The Pizza Planet Truck, first seen in the original “Toy Story,” makes an appearance in almost every Pixar film. It actually appears twice in “Cars 2”—as a guest on the “Tire Talk” television show just before the Mel Dorado show comes on, and in the Radiator Springs epilogue as a race spectator when the jet-propelled Mater flies by.
- SNEAK PEEK — In every Pixar film, savvy viewers can catch a sneak peek at a tease for the studio’s next release. In “Cars 2,” there is a “car-ified” version of prominent figures from 2012’s “Brave.” When the Lemons crash into Ye Left Turn Inn in the London sequence, look closely!
- DINNER IS SERVED — In Paris, there is a restaurant called Gastow’s, a car-ified reference to Gusteau’s, the gourmet Parisian restaurant from “Ratatouille.”
- MAKING THE ROUNDS — In the London leg of the World Grand Prix, a banner advertising “Lassetyre” tires is visible, a reference to director John Lasseter.
- FROM V8 TO V9 — The exterior of Flo’s V8 Café has been extended in “Cars 2” to accommodate the set for “Flo’s Cooking Show,” which was to be featured in a segment of the film that was eventually cut. However, you can still catch a glimpse of the extension when the café is viewed from the outside.
- A STAR IS BORN — “Cars 2” director John Lasseter voices two characters in the film: John Lassetire, Jeff Gorvette’s crew chief, and a gambling car in the Porto Corsa Casino. His Porto Corsa line: “C’mon, fuzzy dice!”
- LEWIS LENDS A LINE — “Cars 2” co-director Brad Lewis performs the voice of Tubbs Pacer, one of the Lemonheads featured in Porto Corsa.
- WATERCOLOR WARFARE — Thompson, the spy train in “Cars 2,” contains many weapons with which the spies are outfitted. In the scene in which Mater is being equipped for his espionage duties, one of the weapons on display is actually a very lethal looking paintbrush.
JOINING THE “CARS 2” WORLD
Filmmakers “Car-ify” Iconic Global Locations
FIRST STOP—TOKYO – The World Grand Prix begins in Japan.
- Mount Fuji, seen during the Japan trip in “Cars 2,” has been “car-ified” for the film. It has snow runoff that looks like tire tread-marks.
- The Rainbow Bridge seen in Japan is made up of automobile parts, including valves, rocker arms and springs.
- The World Grand Prix kick-off party was not in the film when the production team visited Tokyo’s National Art Center, but was added because the design and look of the space inspired the scene. Glass elevators in the museum were turned in to tubular elevators with piston-shaped platforms in the film.
OUI OUI PARIS – Though there is no racing in Paris, Mater visits the iconic city as part of his role in the elaborate international espionage storyline.
- Paris’ iconic Notre Dame Cathedral in the film is adorned with 24 “car-goyle” statues and flying buttresses in the shape of exhaust pipes.
- The Pont des Arts in “Cars 2” is made with automobile leaf springs – a type of spring used in car suspensions.
- The top of the Eiffel Tower seen in “Cars 2” is the shape of a 1930’s European spark plug; its base contains the features of a French wire wheel.
- The top of the Arc de Triomphe in “Cars 2” was designed in the shape of an engine block with headlights in the front features.
- A longstanding Pont des Arts custom calls for couples to attach a padlock to the railing and throw the key in the river, sealing their love forever. The bridge features padlocks on the railing in “Cars 2.”
- John Lasseter and wife Nancy learned during a visit to Paris that couples should kiss when they cross the Pont Des Arts. Two characters kiss on the bridge in “Cars 2”—and one is lavender, Nancy’s favorite color.
THE BEST OF THE EUROPEAN RIVIERA – In creating the look of the fictitious Italian seaside town Porto Corsa, “Cars 2” production designers combined the racetrack of Monaco with the terrain of the Amalfi Coast.
- The casino in Porto Corsa is built on a rocky outcropping shaped like a 1948 Fiat 500 Topolino.
- The Porto Corsa Marina is shaped like an automobile wheel.
- The church in Uncle Topolino’s village is called “Our Lady of Automobiles.”
- At the craps table at the Porta Corsa casino, the game is played with fuzzy dice, much like the kind you might find hanging from a car’s rearview mirror.
CROWNING THE CHAMPION – The World Grand Prix comes to a close in London.
- In the London of “Cars 2,” the landmark dome of St. Paul’s cathedral is shaped like a car’s differential gear casing.
- London’s famed clock tower, Big Ben, is named Big Bentley in “Cars 2,” and is made up of Bentley grilles and hood ornaments.
- The Latin inscription below the clock dial on Big Bentley reads “God Salvage Crown Victoria the First” – a reference to the Ford Crown Victoria.