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Oscars: 5 funny movie references in Seth MacFarlane's 'Family Guy'

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Remember that time when Peter, Stewie or Brian made an observation then we quickly cut away to a funny skit for the punchline?

Anyone who's sat down for an episode of Seth MacFarlane's Family Guy will be more than familiar with this particular comedic trope. It's a technique that has hit and miss results (South Park even parodied it to good effect), but it's clear to see that MacFarlane and the Family Guy team grew up soaked in popular culture.

The movie references fly thick and fast, with a particular leaning towards '80s classics and George Lucas's original Star Wars trilogy. As MacFarlane readies himself for the Oscar hosting spotlight this weekend, Digital Spy takes a look at five Family Guy film references...

The Star Wars Trilogy
Family Guy had been peppered with Star Wars references for some time and - after Lucasfilm granted MacFarlane and co special permission in 2007 - the animated show went into all-out parody mode by dedicating its sixth season premiere Blue Harvest to A New Hope. Peter played Han, Brian was Chewie, Lois was Princess Leia and Chris stood in for Luke Skywalker, while Meg - forever the butt of the joke - had to make do with being a Dianoga. Family Guy completed its own Star Wars trilogy with Something, Something, Something, Dark Side and It's a Trap!, named after Admiral Ackbar's famous exclamation.



The Passion of the Christ 2
"Let he who is without sin kick the first ass," is the tagline for this imagined sequel to Mel Gibson's Passion of the Christ in the episode 'North by North Quahog' (itself a tip of the hat to Hitchcock's classic). Chris Tucker teams up with the unpronounceable JIm Caviezel for a buddy comedy promising bullets, blunts, car chases and explosions. Honestly, we'd be first in line if this actually hit cinemas.



Willem Dafoe under Stewie's bed
Why does this happen? We don't know, but Dafoe himself has seen the surreal clip of him sliding creepily out from under Stewie's bed and taking a drag on a cigarette. He told Digital Spy of the moment: "It's pretty cool. It's weird, I don't know the show but I know some people really love it."



Back to the Future
It's obvious from the sheer volume of references throughout Family Guy's history that MacFarlane holds the '80s time travel classic in extremely high record. We've seen Peter drive a DeLorean, Doc Brown reveals himself as a racist, a huge-scale chicken fight that overlaps with Back to the Future III and an entire episode - 'Meet the Quagmires' - that riffs on the trilogy's first two movies. In this version, Brian stuns the Enchantment Under the Sea Dance with a keytar-shredding rendition of Rick Astley's 'Never Gonna Give You Up'.



Christian Bale tears Peter Griffin a new one
Though not directly lifted from a movie, this intense rant from Christian Bale on the set of Terminator Salvation sent shockwaves through the industry when it leaked online. Family Guy spoofed the moment to good effect in 'Ocean's Three and a Half' as Peter recalled an encounter with the Dark Knight actor on the set. The episode cut Peter's voice into the profanity-fuelled tirade as we got to hear Quahog's favourite son discuss Bale's contribution to a swear jar, question the need for another Terminator film and misread the signs when Bale says the pair are "done professionally".



The 85th Academy Awards show will air live on ABC on Sunday, February 24.

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