Aquaman contains a fair share of references to the DC Extended Universe and beyond, but one of the film's early nods has some surprising origins.
Mild spoilers for Aquaman below!
The opening sequence of Aquaman features the love story of Thomas Curry (Temura Morrison) and Queen Atlanna (Nicole Kidman), which ultimately leads to the birth of Artur Curry (Jason Momoa). When Thomas first takes
On its own, this blink-and-you'll-miss-it Easter egg is already pretty clever, as it uses a rather obscure piece of pop culture to further Aquaman's deep-sea setting. But as it turns out, the reference may have come from a very specific place -- a Twitter challenge from fan-favorite director Edgar Wright.
In December of 2016, Wright struck up a conversation with Aquaman director James Wan, after applauding his use of a clip from the British TV show The Goodies in The Conjuring. Wan somewhat-jokingly replied that he would try to put a Dawson's Creek reference in Aquaman, prompting Wright to suggest that he should include a reference to Stingray.
Haha. Thank you. Now I'm working to get a "Dawson's Creek" reference into Aquaman.... Joking (or maybe not) //t.co/lDfk6kmXYy— James Wan (@creepypuppet) December 7, 2016
I think you need to get Stingray or this song into Aquaman. Then I will personally give you an Oscar. //t.co/KurnaMqj3i— edgarwright (@edgarwright) December 7, 2016
While it's not 100% clear if the Stingray nod is a deliberate reference to Wright's tweet, he did recently highlight the fact that Wan has "made good on this bet", which means that he needs to personally bring the fellow director an Academy Award.
This Easter egg is just the latest example of the unique sensibility that Wan brought to Aquaman. And while it's unclear if the director will return for the film's in-development sequel, he's certainly appreciated the work he's been able to do on the film.
"I actually don't know what I want to do next for the first time in my career." Wan recently told ComicBook.com. "I felt like Aquaman ticked a lot of boxes for me. I want to do another action movie after Furious 7, I wanted to do a world creation film, and I wanted to do a superhero movie, and Aquaman literally ticked all of those boxes for me. And so right now, I'm in that sort of place of like do I kind of go back and do a smaller movie maybe as my next one, something a bit more intimate. Or if I can do a personal movie, but maybe it's on a bigger scale. I'm not sure at this point."1comments
What do you think of Aquaman's Stingray nod? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!
Aquaman is in theaters now. Upcoming DC films include Shazam on April 5, 2019, Joker on October 10, 2019, Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) on February 7, 2020, and Wonder Woman 1984 on June 5, 2020.