All of Jordan Peele’s movies feel of a piece. They’re smart, scary, beautifully-shot horror movies with all kinds of big ideas bubbling beneath their surfaces. His latest movie is Nope, a disturbing, entertaining, and razor-sharp thriller about a brother and sister (Daniel Kaluuya and Keke Palmer) who become convinced that there’s a UFO hiding among the clouds above their California horse ranch and set out to prove it.
Because the movies share such similar aesthetics sensibilities (and some actors, like Kaluuya who starred in Peele’s Get Out before Nope) fans have begun to wonder whether these stories are all set in the same fictional universe akin to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, only with a lot less superheroes and with a lot more monsters, aliens, and unnatural surgical procedures. Are we living in the early days of a Peele Cinematic Universe?
Peele himself suggests that we might be. In the Nope press notes, he points to a scene that suggests a direct connection to the world of Us. It comes about midway through the film, when Kaluuya and Palmer’s characters get a meal at a fast food restaurant with a friend. They wind up at Copperpots Cove, a fried fish joint.
Copperpots Cove doesn’t exist in our world — but it did exist in Us. At one point in that film, the central family had their own meal from the same restaurant.
As to whether that means Us and Nope share a cinematic universe, here’s what Peele says in the press notes:
I try to make all my films in the same universe — this universe: reality. I think there are certain ways in which the movie world diverges from our reality, like the fast-food chain, Copperpots Cove. That doesn’t really exist, but it’s in Us and it’s also in Nope. So, people may be led to connect and wonder if Nope and Us exist in the same universe. Those are speculations I am happy to let people make.
Peele was so committed to the reality of Nope’s world, that he wrote out the entire menu for Copperpots Cove and then got a chef he liked to make a real fish sandwich that the restaurant would serve, while the prop team created their own realistic fast food packaging. I don’t think it’s a huge spoiler to say that this stuff is barely visible onscreen. But I’m sure it helped the actors feel like they were eating in a real fast food joint.
Peele didn’t outright confirm that Nope and Us take place in the same cinematic universe, but he did point out this clue that they might be. He also said he’s “happy” for people to think along those lines. So keep your eyes out for Copperpots Cove in whatever he does next — and maybe watch Nope for more connections between it and Get Out and Nope the next time you see it.