In an interview, Steven Spielberg said this was the third most difficult movie he has made in his career, behind Jaws (1975) and Saving Private Ryan (1998).

The spell cast to use the Orb Of Osuvox is from the movie Excalibur. In modern Irish it's, "Anáil nathrach, ortha bháis is beatha, do chéal déanaimh." Which means,"Serpent's breath, charm of death and life, thy omen of making."

The Zemeckis cube is named after director Robert Zemeckis. When the cube is activated, the music playing is from the Back to the Future (1985) trilogy, directed by Robert Zemeckis. Alan Silvestri composed the score for both the BTTF trilogy and this film.

During the race sequence the marquee of a theater can be seen. It reads "Schwarzenegger Jack Slater III". This is a nod to Arnold Schwarzenegger's film Last Action Hero (1993), also written by Zak Penn. According to Penn the nod was unintentional and was included by ILM staff as suggestion by co-writer Ernest Cline. Penn himself didn't know about it before the release of the first trailer.

Steven Spielberg is referenced (along with some of his movies) in Ernest Cline's source novel. Spielberg had stated that he would remove these references, although some like the Delorean and a Tyrannosaurus Rex do appear.

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.

Steven Spielberg made The Post (2017) while he was waiting for Industrial Light & Magic to create close to 1,500 digital effect shots for this movie.

Besides the obvious Bigfoot, Delorean, and Akira vehicles, other notables in the race were the Mach 5, Batmobile, A Team van, V8 Interceptor, Christine and the Trans-Am from Smokey and the Bandit

Christopher Nolan, Robert Zemeckis, Matthew Vaughn, Peter Jackson, and Edgar Wright were all considered to direct this film.

At one point in the movie, the gang goes into a simulation of the hotel from The Shining. In real life, Steven Spielberg was close friends with The Shining's director Stanley Kubrick. Spielberg even once called the scene where Wendy finds Jack's novel as "a great example of counter intuitive direction".

The semi-truck blocking the road in the middle of the opening race is the truck driven by Jack Burton (Kurt Russell) in "Big Trouble in Little China" (1986)

During the scene inside the shop, in the background you can see the flying RV from Spaceballs, and also Ripley's mech suit from Aliens.

Oasis is actually an acronym. It stands for Ontologically Anthropocentric Sensory Immersive Simulation. This is mentioned in Ernest Cline's source novel but not mentioned in the film.

The film includes characters from pop culture staples of the 1980s and 1990s, including 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).

The film was scheduled to be released on December 15, 2017. It was pushed back to March 30, 2018, to avoid competition with Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017).

In the scene where they are discussing Art3mis's possible real life persona, there is a picture of Wil Wheaton on the mirror. In the book, Wil is vice-president of the Oasis user council. He also reads the audio book for this and Ernest Cline's second novel, Armada.

In the scene where Sorrento (Ben Mendelsohn) meets I-R0k (T.J. Miller) about the orb, there lies a crashed ship from the original George Pal version of War of the Worlds (1953). It's also making the original sounds. Spielberg remade War of the Worlds in 2005.

The IOI acronym is a nod to the classic arcade game Pong. (the l's resemble the paddles, while the O is the ball).

Warner Bros. and De Line Pictures won an auction for the rights to Ernest Cline's novel Ready Player One in 2010, before it had been published.

Halliday's Oasis alter-ego name is "Anorak." Although in American English the word "anorak" refers exclusively to a type of hooded jacket or parka, in the UK the word is also a slightly derogatory slang term for a person Americans would call a "nerd" or a "geek": someone with an obsessive and comprehensive interest in a particular aspect of pop culture, a hobby, or a specialty or niche subject. This level of obsessive fandom is the entire point of the Halliday character and his creation of the Oasis.

The last rifle spawned by Artemis is a Lancer Assault Rifle with a chainsaw bayonet from the Gears of War games.

Alan Silvestri worked closely with director Steven Spielberg to achieve the right direction for the original musical score that would not only be original and distinctive that would not allude to any of the film's 1980s and 1990s pop culture references, but also to evoke and enhance the film's story and tone of optimism, innocence, beauty, and a sense of wonder and old-fashioned adventure that many of the Hollywood films of the 1980s and the 1990s utilized to great effect. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Spielberg said of Silvestri's musical score for the film, "While all sorts of culturally iconic references populate Ready Player One (2018), the score that Alan Silvestri composed is completely and intoxicatingly original. It's bound together by multiple themes that identify plot and character and is infused by such percussive adrenaline and soaring strings that Alan has made Ready Player One appear to fly."

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 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.

Shipped to some cinemas under the pseudonym "Deep Blue". Deep Blue is a supercomputer most known for playing the game Chess against, and losing to, Chess Grandmaster Gary Kasparov.

In the scene where Halliday and Morrow are discussing the date with Kira, Halliday's monitor show he is working on the build of Room 237 of The Shining.

A small touch on Art3mis' avatar after Parzival met the her in real life a detail was added on her right eye to reflect the birthmark she carries in reality.

During the closeup of Halliday in his coffin, he has quarters over his eyes from the year 1972; the same year the book's author, Ernest Cline, was born.

Michael Keaton was considered for J.D. Halliday.

When Wade first goes into the container to put on the headset to enter the Oasis, there is a campaign poster on the wall. It is to vote for Goldie Wilson who was running for mayor in the film Back To The Future.

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 character of F'Nale Zandor was not in the book.

Warner Bros. and producer Donald De Line acquired the adaptation rights to Ernest Cline's novel while it was in galley form in a very aggressive bidding contest, beating rival studios Paramount and 20th Century Fox on 21 June 2010, just the following day after the publishing company Random House won the publication rights. Cline stipulated two conditions in the agreement with the studio: he and Eric Eason gets the first attempt to write the script on his book; Cline wants Steven Spielberg to direct it.

Boba Fett is at the bar where the dance number is done.

The source novel references the TV series Spaced (1999), written by and starring Simon Pegg. Pegg plays Ogden Morrow in the movie.

In one scene near the end of the film, a random citizen can be seen wearing a futuristic version of the HTC VIVE VR headset. HTC participated in promotion of the film with VR arcade and home VR releases of Ready Player One VR mini-experiences with the most recently available VIVE headset.

Elle Fanning and Lola Kirke were considered for the role of Art3mis before Olivia Cooke was cast.

This is Steven Spielberg's first movie since Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008) to be filmed in Panavision (anamorphic).

The box containing the spell is the same one Gizmo is in when he's given to Billy in Gremlins.

It has been noted that Family Ties (1982) was a major influence on Ernest Cline whilst writing the book. The series was set in Westerville, Ohio - a suburb of Columbus, the setting of this movie.

During the first race when the 1966 Batmobile comes to a skidding stop the skidding sound effect is the same cadence as the Na na na na na na na na from the opening credits of the Batman TV theme.

Toshiro's virtual avatar 'Daito' is a samurai which resembles Japan's legendary actor Toshiro Mifune who has played a samurai in many films during his long distinguished career.

During the garage scene, you can see a copy of the ED209 robot from Robocop.

The film involves finding "Easter eggs" (hidden references), and the film itself opened on Easter weekend.

Steven Spielberg's 33rd film.

Ready Player One (2018) marks the first Steven Spielberg-directed film project for Warner Bros. Pictures since A.I. Artificial Intelligence (2001).

A reference to Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977) was planned in the screenplay but it was vetoed by Sony Pictures, even though it was one of the first films directed by Steven Spielberg.

The Cyclops from Ray Harryhausen's "The Seventh Voyage of Sinbad"(1958) is seen during the first login scene and the final battle.

A passage from the source novel describes Wade's obsession and "research" of Anorak's Almanac, Halliday's journal chock full of references to 1980s books, movies, TV shows, music, and video games. One of the filmographies that Wade studied from the Almanac was Steven Spielberg.

When we first enter Aech's workshop, Pee-wee's bike from Pee-wee's Big Adventure can be seen in the background.

Nick Robinson, Nat Wolff, and Dalton Vaughn were considered for the role of Wade Watts/Parzival before Tye Sheridan was cast.

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.

During the scene in the dance club where i-R0k tells the girls to leave the booth, the song "Blue Monday" by New Order is playing. In the movie The Wedding Singer (1998) (which is another movie deep in 80s trivia), the same song is playing when Adam Sandler and his co-stars are in a very similar dance club in a nearly identical booth.

Some controversy emerged after Tye Sheridan was cast. Casting website Cast It Talent had advertised that the film was seeking "unknown talent" for the lead role. Several people sent in audition videos in hopes of being cast. When news of Sheridan's casting came out less than a day after the casting campaign ended, the reaction of people who auditioned ranged from understanding that they likely wouldn't be picked to outrage because they felt they had been lied to.

First Steven Spielberg film to have 70mm motion picture prints made since Hook in 1991.

This will be the fourth time a Steven Spielberg film isn't composed by John Williams, after Duel (1971), The Color Purple (1985), and Bridge of Spies (2015).

"Ready Player One" is a phrase from the days of classic video games.

When Wade and Samantha meet, she's wearing a Peter Saville original tee shirt, the design used for the Joy Division "Unknown Pleasures" album cover. Current value of the shirt is $310.

During the race sequence, when King Kong appears, the theme from the original 1933 film composed by Max Steiner is played.

Apart from the ships and items listed above, in Aech's garage there's also a Viper fighter from Battlestar Galactica (1978), and a Cargo Pod from 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968).

Nolan Sorrento's avatar, the Boss Man is based on Senator Armstrong in the video game Metal Gear Revengeance.

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.

Ernest Cline based the relationship of James Halliday and Ogden Morrow on Apple founders Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak. However, Cline said the primary influence for the technopreneur characters are based on: Nolan Sorrento (Nolan Bushnell, Atari founder) James Halliday (Howard Hughes and Richard Garriott a.k.a Lord British / Ultima developer) Ogden Morrow (Harry Knowles, Ain't It Cool News founder)

In the novel, Wade finds the Copper Key by adventuring through a recreation of the classic Dungeons & Dragons module "Tomb of Horrors". While that does not take place in the movie, it still references Tomb of Horrors by featuring the iconic "Face of the Great Green Devil" on the back of Aech's van.

The third collaboration of Mark Rylance and Steven Spielberg after Bridge of Spies (2015) and The BFG (2016).

Steven Spielberg's first movie to gross over $100 million domestically since Lincoln.

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.

The TARDIS from Doctor Who can be seen in the background of the first scene in the shop.

This will be the first time Steven Spielberg and Simon Pegg have worked together since The Adventures of Tintin (2011).

The Overlook Theatre in Oasis is named after the Hotel of same name in the movie THE SHINING.

The start up screen for the Oasis is very similar to the Start Screen to the Nerve Gear From the Anime Sword Art Online, with Colors flying toward the viewer and the Logo appearing. Sword Art Online has a very similar concept to Ready Player One, but it is unclear if this was a reference or just a coincidence.

Parzival's belt in the Oasis has the Thundercats (1985-89) logo on it.

The virtual reality racing vehicles do the same spiral jump as Roger Moore's James Bond did in live action in The Man With The Golden Gun (1975).

Tye Sheridan plays a character who spends a significant portion of the film wearing a gadget over his eyes, just like his character Cyclops in X-Men: Apocalypse (2016).

Steven Spielberg's first time working for Warner Bros. since A.I. Artificial Intelligence.

The Overlook Theatre in the film resembles The Senator Theatre in Baltimore, MD. Director Barry Levinson premiered several films there and is good friends with Steven Spielberg.

British Actor Paul Barnhill appears in RP1 as Sorrentos Personal assistant (Sorrentos Man). He also appeared in Spielbergs The BFG as the footman that helps BFG into Buckingham Palace.

Three cast members have also appeared on Game of Thrones (2011): Ralph Ineson, Kae Alexander, and Hannah John-Kamen.

In the opening scene, as Wade is leaving his place and "Jump" by Van Halen is playing, David Lee Roth sings "gotta roll with the punches" at the exact moment that the camera passes a woman boxing with OASIS gear on.

The third collaboration between Mark Rylance and Steven Spielberg after Bridge of Spies and The BFG.

When the Hi-Five hack into Sorrento's immersion pod as OASIS reproductions of their real-life selves, their eyes give off an amber glow. This is a reference to a lighting effect used to differentiate between humans and replicants in Blade Runner (1982).

In the film Wade receives his Extra Life coin from The Curator. In the book he wins it for discovering and mastering a hidden arcade version of PAC-MAN.

Daito stays alive throughout the entire movie, while in the book he is murdered by the IOI both in the Oasis and the real world.

Despite being part of the High Five, Wade Watts or his avatar Parzival are never able to complete a high five: they are always left hanging.

Although Steven Spielberg has stated that many references to himself that are seen in the book have been removed from the film, he has confirmed that Wade will still have his custom DeLorean, which is a prominent element in the Spielberg-produced Back to the Future (1985).

When the IOI Sixers attack Parzival and Art3mis at the Distracted Globe dance club, Art3mis fights back with an M4A1 pulse rifle from Aliens (1986). She is also seen using a Lawgiver from Judge Dredd (1995)

The Holy Hand Grenade used in the final battle is a callback to the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch from Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975).

The ship that Daito jumps out towards the end of the film is Serenity from the TV series Firefly.

In the film, the jade key is obtained by living through certain scenes from the movie version of The Shining. In the novel, the copper key is used to open the first gate, which requires the player to live through and recite the entire movie WarGames.

One of the largest differences between the book and film revolves around the copper key. In the film everyone knows where the key is, and a seemingly impossible auto race frequently occurs to obtain it. In the novel many years go by without anyone knowing where the first key is located, until Perzival discovers an area outside of his school that requires him to navigate a Dungeons & Dragons campaign, before beating a demon in a head to head arcade game of Joust. It's shortly after obtaining the key that he first meets Art3mis, who had been trying to beat the demon at Joust for nearly a month.

In the book, Parzival and Art3mis don't meet in real life until the end of the story. In the movie, they meet about halfway through the story to place a heavier emphasis on their budding romance.

The scene where the Iron Giant disappears into the lava and gives a thumbs up is similar to a scene in Terminator 2: Judgement Day, where the T-800 makes the same gesture as it is lowered into a vat of molten steel.

During the scene where Parzival & Aech are chatting about who Art3mis may be in the 'Real World' a Mayor Goldie Wilson poster can be seen in the background. This is yet another nod to the 1985 classic Back to the Future.

When Wade receives the egg at the end and first holds it up, a snippet of the theme song to Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (another Spielberg film) begins to play.

A vast majority of the movie is completely different from the book. This includes the riddles and location of the keys, the death of Daito, Art3mis meeting Wade in the second act rather than the end, and the characters running from IOI as Parzival finishes the Third Test.

The Atari system at Anorak's Castle is connected to a TV set to channel 3. Early video game consoles connected to the TV by connecting to the two antenna terminal screws using a small switch box. This box had an analog sliding switch which could be moved between tv and game mode. It required the TV to be tuned to channel 3 to receive the game system signal.

In the novel the character of Ultraman from Ultraman: A Special Effects Fantasy Series (1966) played a crucial part in the climax of the story. However the rights of the character were in the middle of a legal dispute so the film replaced it with the Iron Giant from The Iron Giant (1999).

In the novel, "The Stacks" where Wade Watts lives are in Oklahoma City and he then moves to Columbus, Ohio. In the movie, he lives in Columbus, Ohio from the beginning.

At the end of the movie when Wade is in Halliday's room, a Rush poster is visible. This poster was a clue to the Easter egg in the book.

In Halliday's death video announcement, his casket is the same photon torpedo tube in which Spock's body is placed in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (1982).

During a panel discussion at San Diego Comic-Con, Steven Spielberg confirmed that the titular character from The Iron Giant (1999) will be a major part of this film.

The music throughout the Overlook Hotel scenes is the score used in the film, The Shining (1980). Some shots throughout the sequence are taken from the original film as well, most noticeably some shots during the room 237 scene.

Despite being a major plot point in the book and a significant part of the first trailer, aside from a character's T-shirt and a poster in Halliday's room Rush play no role at all in the movie.

During the Shining sequence, Parzival pulls Aech out of the freezer that Wendy had locked Jack in. Spielberg also made reference to that sequence in Jurassic Park.

The pistol Parzival uses when he shoots Art3mis to save her ITRW is from the original Battlestar Galactica TV series.

A reference to Spielberg can be found in the first part of the race where the T-Rex from Jurassic Park pops up with the familiar growling sound and appearance.

The first date outfit Wade tries on is Prince's coat that is worn on album covers Dirty Mind, Controversy, and Purple Rain. The Prince track "I wanna be your lover" is also heard early in the film.

Nolan Sorrento's (Ben Mendelsohn) password written on the yellow post-it-note is B055man69.

When Sorrento spawns a Mechagodzilla during the final battle, the theme music from the original 1954 Godzilla film can be heard on the soundtrack.

Wade's avatar, Parzival is an obvious reference to Percival, the knight in the Holy Grail legend. Throughout the film, several moments occurred alluding to the legend: Percival means "old fool" in old English. In the first half of the film, Wade is naive to the reality until a tragedy happens. Percival's jacket has a sword image behind it. He's the knight that discovers the Holy Grail at the end of the quest, just as Wade finds the Easter egg at the end. In the legend, Percival brings redemption to the Fisher King Amfortas. A conversation and a promise between Wade and James Halliday towards the end about correcting Halliday's mistake subsequently redeems both of them. Percival receives a cosmic awakening after kissing Kundry, as in parallel with Wade kissing Samantha the first time. Percival fights the Red Knight. In parallel, Parzival fights i-R0k for the Easter egg at Planet Doom.

The OASIS scenes are filmed digitally (except when entering the world of The Shining), while the real world scenes are shot on film, heavily emphasizing the celluloid noise. That provides a subtle clue something is amiss when Sorrento's station is hacked, due to the lack of grain in the digital cinematography.

Halliday filming his death announcement while lying inside a Star Trek photon torpedo casing may be a subtle hint to the ending, where his persona is revealed to still remain within OASIS. In Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (1982), the character of Spock was buried inside a photon torpedo on the Genesis planet (also a man-made experiment). In the sequel Star Trek III: The Search for Spock (1984), Spock's body is revealed to have been resurrected by the planet. Both movies also have Halliday and Spock appearing as children.

Win Morisaki playing as Daito has a character skin in the Oasis from Gundam. Win played Dango Inamoto in the Kamen Rider W series. There is a PSP game that has both characters in it called Heroes VS: Gundam x Ultraman x Kamen Rider.

In the final battle of the movie, Sorrento's Oasis avatar spawns a MechaGodzilla robot. While he's fighting, the original score from Godzilla, King of the Monsters(1956) can be heard playing.

Daito severs I-Roks arm with the Glave from Krull (1983)

During the scene near the end of the movie during the Van scene, Wade is seen wearing headphones and on the side of each headphone is the logo from the 1980's TV show: The Greatest American Hero.

Two first-generation Nissan Leafs (2011-2017) appear in the movie. The police car Sorrento and F'Nale are loaded into and a blue burnt-out vehicle near the end of the movie.

One of the lapel pins on Halliday's suit during his death video is a miniature of Simon, a popular electronic game from Milton-Bradley in which you needed to match lights by pressing four buttons in the same sequence they lit. Although a very popular game in the 1980s, the pin represents the game in its "modern", 21st century version (black disc shaped, with the buttons in each quadrant).