John Hughes Seemingly Planted an Easter Egg for 1 of His Movies in Another

John Hughes is known for his popular ’80s and ’90s teen movies. Flicks like Ferris Bueller’s Day Off resonate with a generation of young people who grew up with the relatable stories. In fact, his work is so beloved that audiences sometimes draw connections between his films. And the suggestion of a shared universe often arises.

‘Ferris Bueller’s Day Off’ references ‘The Breakfast Club’

John Hughes movies
The movie “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off”, written and directed by John Hughes. Seen here from left, Mia Sara as Sloane Peterson, Alan Ruck as Cameron Frye and Matthew Broderick as Ferris Bueller. Initial theatrical release June 11, 1986. Screen capture. Paramount Pictures. (Photo by CBS via Getty Images)

Another of Hughes’ popular movies? The Breakfast Club, which follows a group of teens during Saturday detention. The five students aren’t friends at first but grow close throughout their hours spent in the halls of Shermer High School. 

If that name sounds familiar to fans of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, that’s because it was referenced in the film, as pointed out by MsMojo. In the movie, a hallway shot shows a banner on the wall saying, “Go Shermer.” Some people interpret the poster as what’s known as an Easter egg, or a hidden reference. 

However, other fans see it as a clue that all the characters go to the same school. On Reddit, some suggested Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and The Breakfast Club exist in the same universe. “I wonder how many of his movies cross over like that. So many of them were based in or near Chicago,” one user wrote. 

However, while they may be meant to be the same school, the outward appearance of the buildings in each movie is different.

Other John Hughes movies could exist in the same world

Hughes died from a heart attack in 2009. But he left behind a legacy. People who enjoy same-universe theories posit that many of his films are in the same town. Hughes was the one to write several of the scripts on top of directing each project. In other words, these similarities appear intentional. 

Other films in the shared universe theory are Weird Science and Uncle Buck. They both feature teenagers in high school as the main characters, and were released in the ’80s. So, the protagonists could have been going to school around the same time. 

Sixteen CandlesThe Breakfast ClubFerris Buellers Day OffPlanes Trains and AutomobilesWeird Science, etc., are either set in or have characters from ‘Shermer’ Illinois…” someone noted on the thread. 

Hughes tended to shoot his movies in Chicago, Illinois, and several locations were in the suburbs. The similar settings in each film help build the theory of a shared universe. 

John Hughes loved to be creative with license plates

Ferris Bueller's Day Off car
The movie “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off”, written and directed by John Hughes. Seen here, a red 1961 Ferrari 250 GT California Spyder convertible sportscar during a joyride in Chicago. Initial theatrical release June 11, 1986. Screen capture. Paramount Pictures. (Photo by CBS via Getty Images)

A school banner is not the only kind of Easter egg Hughes loved to put in his works. Typically, people do not pay attention to license plates in movies unless the director focuses on them. However, like some other directors, Hughes used them as a place for Easter eggs. 

Viewers with a keen eye may spot what the license plates say in The Breakfast Club. In the beginning, a car drops a few of the characters off for detention. The car Brian, “The Brain,” comes out of has a plate that spells “EMC 2” — as in, the equation E=MC squared.

Meanwhile, “The Jock,” Andrew, drives a car with the license plate “OHIOST,” — as in Ohio State University, a school known for its athletics.

This finds its way into Hughes’ other movies. In Sixteen Candles, for instance, Samantha Baker’s crush Jake Ryan’s car reads “21850.” A bit more subtle, this Easter egg relates to the film’s title, as the numbers add up to 16. And, in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Cameron’s dad’s car, which plays a big part in the movie, indicates his state of being throughout — “NRVOUS.”

RELATED: John Hughes Humiliated the Cast of ‘Ferris Bueller’s Day Off’ by Telling Them Their Work ‘Sucked’