The Russos Pick Their Favorite Captain America: Civil War Easter Egg

Easter eggs are part of the DNA of Marvel movies. There is a particular love for details in the fanhood of the films, and as a result filmmakers often fill their features with elements that audiences will only discover on their ninth viewings. Some are entirely obvious, and some are hidden so well that they aren't uncovered for years. Of course, directors wind up favoring some of these gags over others in their work, and for Joe and Anthony Russo, nothing topped the Bluth stair car parked at the Leipzig-Halle Airport in the making of Captain America: Civil War.

With Captain America: Civil War arriving on Blu-ray and DVD next month -- the optimal opportunity to watch the blockbuster frame-by-frame -- I asked the Russo brothers about their use of Easter eggs when I interviewed them over the phone late last week. I asked if they had a particular favorite for which fans should be on the lookout, and Joe Russo explained why the aforementioned nod to their time working on the beloved comedy series Arrested Development was a proud achievement:

We love being intertextual, so obviously being able to put the Bluth stair car in the movie was a delight for us. That's the sort of stuff we like to do, and in terms of layering the storytelling from an intertextual standpoint, because I think pop culture in general is very intertextual. You look at Stranger Things. I think people appreciate the definition and depth that you can bring to something by combining elements from other works. And I think it's part of the fun of popular storytelling today. So, that was probably our favorite Easter egg.

For those unfamiliar with Arrested Development, the Bluth stair car is the primary mode of transportation for Jason Bateman's character, Michael Bluth, on the comedy series. While his family used to have a great deal of wealth, problems with the law resulted in assets being seized -- and one of the few things that the family was left with was a branded stair car used for boarding private jets. In Captain America: Civil War, the vehicle known for attracting hop-ons can be spotted in the scene where Paul Rudd's Ant-Man and Chris Evans' Captain America are team up to simultaneously throw a miniaturized truck and a "growing" disc at Don Cheadle's War Machine. This plan doesn't go well, but the Bluth stair car is seemingly unharmed.

Bluth Stair Car

Discussing the various Easter eggs placed into Captain America: Civil War, Anthony Russo admitted that it's hard to remember a lot of the special hints and references they included simply because many of them were thought up on set and didn't exactly involve a lot of planning. This, however, was not true in the case of the Arrested Development joke, because that Bluth stair car was not a CGI creation. Said the co-director,

The Bluth stair car was the opposite of "thinking about it on set," because we obviously had to prepare a stair car. It's funny, because that stair car was just sitting here, parked on the lot painted like that for a couple months.

For those of you who totally missed seeing the Arrested Development Bluth stair car in Captain America: Civil War, the good news is that you'll soon have a new opportunity to spot it. Look for the film when it arrives on Blu-ray and DVD on September 13th.

Eric Eisenberg
Assistant Managing Editor

Eric Eisenberg is the Assistant Managing Editor at CinemaBlend. After graduating Boston University and earning a bachelor’s degree in journalism, he took a part-time job as a staff writer for CinemaBlend, and after six months was offered the opportunity to move to Los Angeles and take on a newly created West Coast Editor position. Over a decade later, he's continuing to advance his interests and expertise. In addition to conducting filmmaker interviews and contributing to the news and feature content of the site, Eric also oversees the Movie Reviews section, writes the the weekend box office report (published Sundays), and is the site's resident Stephen King expert. He has two King-related columns.