Christopher Nolan, Robert Zemeckis, Matthew Vaughn, Peter Jackson, and Edgar Wright were all considered to direct this film.
The film is directed by Steven Spielberg who himself is actually mentioned in the original novel by Ernest Cline that the film is based on. Spielberg stated that he would be removing references of his movies.
Vin Diesel reprised the voice of the Iron Giant, nineteen years after first voicing the character in Brad Bird's The Iron Giant (1999).
Before his untimely death, Gene Wilder was approached by director Steven Spielberg, who wanted him to appear in the film as well as Gene Wilder. Wilder respectfully declined.
The music score was originally going to be composed by longtime Steven Spielberg collaborator John Williams. However, due to scheduling conflicts working on another Spielberg film, The Post (2017), he left and Alan Silvestri took over. This was only the third film where Spielberg did not collaborate with Williams.
The film was scheduled to be released on December 15, 2017. The date was pushed back until March 30, 2018 to avoid competition with Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017).
The film depicts characters from pop culture staples from the '80s & '90s such as The Iron Giant (1999), TRON (1982), Akira (1988), The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001), Back to the Future (1985), A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984), Tomb Raider (1996), and Duke Nukem (1991) just to name a few.
On August 11, 2015, a rumor began circulating that Steven Spielberg was "courting" Gene Wilder to play OASIS creator James Halliday, which would've made this the first film Wilder has done since 1999. However, Wilder guest starred as Elmer on Yo Gabba Gabba! (2007).
The teaser trailer contains an orchestral version of the song "Pure Imagination" from the film Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (1971). It also contains a segment of the song "Tom Sawyer" by Rush.
Elle Fanning and Lola Kirke were considered for the role of Art3mis before Olivia Cooke was cast.
In the end of the first trailer, the song "Jump" by Van Halen transitions to a sample of the intro song of Back to the Future Part II (1989) and Back to the Future Part III (1990).
The character of F'Nale Zandor was not in the book and was written just for the movie.
Ready Player One (2018) marks the first Steven Spielberg-directed film project for Warner Bros. Pictures since A.I. Artificial Intelligence (2001). Prior to this film, he only produced a handful of films - particularly Letters from Iwo Jima (2006) and Hereafter (2010) for Warner Bros.
Nick Robinson, Nat Wolff, and Dalton Vaughn were considered for the role of Wade Watts/Parzival before Tye Sheridan was cast.
The release of the first poster in December 2017 lead to widespread ridicule as one leg of Tye Sheridan was un-proportionally long.
The film also marks the first Warner Bros. Pictures production since Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007) to be co-produced by DreamWorks Pictures. In the case of Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007), it was co-produced with Warner Bros. Pictures, Village Roadshow Pictures and Amblin Entertainment.
Some controversy surrounded the film when Tye Sheridan was cast due to the fact that casting website Cast It Talent had advertised that this film was looking for unknown talent for the lead role. Several people sent in their audition videos in hopes of being cast as the casting call said "unknown talent". When news of Tye Sheridan's casting broke out less than a day after the casting campaign on Cast It Talent had ended, the reaction of people who auditioned ranged from understanding that they likely wouldn't be picked as they were "unknown" to outraged by the fact that they had been lied to.
This is Steven Spielberg's first movie since Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008) to be filmed in Panavision (anamorphic).
This will be the first time Steven Spielberg and Simon Pegg have worked together since The Adventures of Tintin (2011).
The third collaboration of Mark Rylance and Steven Spielberg with Bridge of Spies (2015) and The BFG (2016).
A worldwide casting call for the lead role of Wade Watts was advertised in early 2015 on major casting and media websites in search for unknown talent.
A passage from the novel Ready Player One describes Wade's obsession and "research" of Anorak's Almanac, Halliday's journal chock full of '80s references to books, movies, TV shows, music, and video games. One of the filmographies that Wade studied from the Almanac was Steven Spielberg's, who just so happens to be directing this film adaptation.
Jane Douglas from the video game YouTube channel Outside Xbox (2009) is an extra in this film. In the first trailer, she's sitting just behind a guy with the numbers 665312 on his helmet.