Fan Theory Argues That the Sharks From Jaws and Finding Nemo Are Related
Bruce from Finding Nemo (2003) and the shark from Jaws (1975) are perhaps the two most famous great whites to ever grace the big screen. But beyond their species, the two characters don't seem to share much in common: Bruce is a well-spoken vegetarian (or at least he tries to be) while the antagonist of Jaws is a mindless man-eater. But according to one fan theory reported by CBR.com, the two of them may be related, which would place Jaws and Finding Nemo in the same cinematic universe.
As Redditor CinnaSol laid out in a post, there are a few clues that suggest Bruce is really the son of the insatiable villain in Jaws. The first is the name: Though it's never mentioned in the movie, director Steven Spielberg nicknamed the animatronic shark used in Jaws Bruce, after his lawyer. Many believe that the shark's name in Finding Nemo is a nod to this piece of Hollywood trivia.
But within the world of the films, the shared name could be more than just a tribute—Bruce could have been named after his father. In Finding Nemo, Bruce says that he never met his dad. This could be a reference to the fact that great whites in nature really do abandon their infants, but it could also be hinting at a backstory where Bruce's father left him to pursue a life of terrorizing beachgoers, only to be blown up by an oxygen tank and never return home.
CinnaSol elaborates further on Reddit (emphasis in the original):
"Bruce in Finding Nemo has a support group of sharks where their entire mantra goes against being mindless killing machines. Maybe because his mother told him about how monstrous his father was? Even by great white standards. We don’t know why Bruce formed a support group like this. It could be that he’s avoiding trying to be like his dad."
The idea that a bloody thriller and a family film are connected isn't too far-fetched, as far as movie fan theories go (especially not for Pixar, which has a habit of planting references to Stanley Kubrick's The Shining in its films). Here are some other truly outrageous theories viewers have come up with.