Pixar had set the benchmark about how to do cartoon characters right before Toy Story tried to introduce audience members to the pleasures of squabbling figurines over 20 years ago: the recipe involves morality, a sense of humor, as well as a lot of emotion.  Maybe most importantly, Pixar combines some of the best talent to voice their characters with a narrative that taps further into ties that bind us all, from the excitements and anxieties of early life to finding your bliss. People take for granted nowadays that animated pictures, in the age of Woody, Remy, and WALL E, must bring sophistication to the cinema.

Among everything else, the Easter egg is also an art form that Pixar has mastered. They're not afraid to cram their intellectual property into the next inevitable blockbuster, but a sneaky appearance from Luxo the Pixar lamp has lost its allure.

That's why it's so exciting to find that they've been smuggling characters who don't even exist yet into their movies and shorts for almost two decades. You've known WALL-E, Nemo, and Dug for a lot longer than you thought:

Dug's shadow: 2007 2009 CRACKED Before the world knew he was an adorable, harmless little goober, Up's Dug scared the bejeezus out of Remy in Ratatoui

The car-sed tapestry: 2011 8-8 2012 CRACKED An unsettling all-car version of Brave's DunBroch family tapestry appears in Cars 2.

The movie that never was: 2010 NEWT XING [NEVER1 CRACKEDC COM Toy Story 3 snuck in a reference to Newt, a film that was supposed to come out in 2011,

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Fin McMissile undercover: 2010 2011 In Toy Story 3, Andy has a of an oddly anthropomorphized version of the Cars 2 co-protagonist.

Lotso lurks: 2009 2010 CRACKED Toy Story 3's sneak-attack antagonist Lotso had an apt cameo in Up -- a forgotten toy, brooding in the corner of a dist

The collegiate cameo: 2013 2015 The star of The Good Dinosaur briefly appears as a distinctly Pixar-ian toy, inside a Monsters University scare emulat

WALL-E'S side Gig: 2007 2008 CRACKED Before he was a lovestruck, possibly genocidal protagonist, WALL-E was a futuristic bus driver in the Ratatouille

Nemo forced to witness sushi prep: 2001 2003 CRACKED Two years before Finding Nemo, a Nemo-like fish appears wide-eyed and mouth agape in this mural b

Mr. Incredible waits patiently: 2003 2004 GRACKED A little kid in the vet's waiting room during the Finding Nemo pelican kerfuffle is reading a Mr. In

Guitar in the car bar: 2017 5 MONTHS LATER CRACKEDCO The cotter Pin Bar in Cars 3 dangled the guitar from Coco right in front of our noses.

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