One of the neatest and most obvious Disney easter eggs can be found in Tarzan, when Terk jams on a tea set that looks exactly like the one from Beauty and the Beast. It's an uncanny match, down to Mrs. Potts frilly lid and Chip's fragmented cranium.
It's such an open secret that you can even find the same teaset in the Tarzan level of the Disney crossover video game Kingdom Hearts.
If you find yourself stuck in Disneyland without a FastPass or just want something to do between your seventh and eighth trips to Splash Mountain, you can head over to Tarzan's Treehouse and find the real-life version of the teaset just hanging out on a crate. It's a pretty neat recreation of a very small detail that's only in the movie for a few seconds.
Man, Mrs. Potts is lookin' rouuugh. She's definitely seen some shit.
You don't see Scrooge McDuck around much these days, but that's probably because he has three cubic acres of money to swim around in. He's still busy amassing his fortune, as you can see in the ad on the back of this comic in A Goofy Movie. Part of it is cut off, but from what I can make it out the ad wants you to mail your valuables to "Duck Sales Co, Money Bin Dr. Duckburg USA" in return for a crisp $20 bill. Sounds like someone is getting in on the Cash4Gold business.
Then again, maybe Scrooge isn't around these days because he got in too deep after he started reading the signs in his doctor's office.
Ask your doctor if the Illuminati is right for you. But probably wear pants while you're doing it.
Tangled was one of the last "traditional" fairy tales yet to be told in Disney animation, and it wore its influences on its sleeve. Splayed across the floor of Rapunzel's room, you can squint and see tomes with titles like Sleeping Beauty, Mulan and The Little Mermaid -- but the real action is in the top left corner, the open picture book that's very familiar.
It's the very same picture book that introduces Sleeping Beauty in the 1959 movie. Rapunzel has a lot in common with the heroine of that classic, as they're both locked away locked away in a tower by malevolent maternal figureshalf-maternal figures in a tower only to be "rescued" by some random dude.
That, and they both seem to have the same taste in menacing sewing appliances.
But Rapunzel's pad isn't only tied to Sleeping Beauty. You can also see a familiar (if murderous) wardrobe in Rapunzel's room.
Maybe most compelling of all are the posts along the stairs. Rapunzel seems to have painted each one with a particular symbol that relates to a previous Disney princess. Some of these are hard to see, but bear with me here.
Starting at the left, we have Belle's rose. Then the seashell would seem to indicate Ariel and her questionable brassiere materials. The shoe, or should I say slipper, might indicate Cinderella. And then the apple would appear to link to Snow White.
It's interesting to think that Rapunzel grew up reading fairy tales while she's living one herself. But maybe it's more of a reflection on the writers and animators who grew up on the Disney of old, creating new fairy tales with guidance from what they enjoyed as children.
Or maybe someone on the art team just likes apples.