- The appearance of Superman in the silver suit right after crashing back to Smallville is a direct nod to the Kryptonian costumes of 1978 which were made out of a screen material that, despite it's glow, appeared dark gray when not properly lit.
- The truck which Martha drove during the opening was the exact truck used for the first movie. The producers managed to find that truck and rented it for use.
- After Superman stops the airplane crash, he says to the passengers (including Lois Lane), "I hope this doesn't put any of you off flying. Statistically speaking, it's still the safest way to travel." Superman said the same thing to Lois after rescuing her from the helicopter crash in the original. And, as in the first movie, Lois faints just after Superman flies away.
- There is a framed photograph of Glenn Ford (Jonathan Kent from the 1978 film) on the piano during the reunion scene at the Kent farm. In a deleted scene from Clark's bedroom, more photos of Ford can be seen. These were created by the graphic design team during the film's production, as seen in Bryan Singer's on-line video journal #21 "In Graphic Detail", and were digitally enhanced to include Eva Marie Saint as Martha and young incarnations of Clark.
- Marlon Brando posthumously reprises his role as Jor-El with some help from VFX. Rhythm & Hues took footage from the 1978 movie and hand-modeled and animated a CG-replica of his face upon the footage. It was then textured and new mouth shapes were then animated onto the model.
- After Lex Luthor and his gang steal the meteorite at the museum, a broken glass has the year 1978 written with the description of the meteorite; which was also the same year the first Superman came to theaters. Not only did it say 1978, but it had "Addis Ababa" above the year, which is where Lex Luthor found the kryptonite meteorite.
- After showing Lois Lane why he thinks the world needs a savior, Superman returns Lois Lane back to the roof of the Daily Planet. Subsequently, the original film's musical motif "Can You Read My Mind", when Superman first took Lois for a flight, can be heard.