In November 2016, the film saw a surge in attention due to the rise in popularity of videos on Youtube that consisted of random edits to the film (and sometimes the trailer). The most popular of these videos is one where the film increases in speed every time the word 'bee' is said.
(at around 29 mins) The scene with Barry B. Benson in the pool is a take off on The Graduate (1967). In both scenes, the title character's parents ask what they want to do with their lives. Both characters are unsure what the future will hold. Both are also having a secret affair.
The character Martin Benson is a reference to an unseen character in Seinfeld: The Pez Dispenser (1992). "Marty Benson" allegedly died after Kramer poured ice-cold Gatorade on his head after a baseball game.
(at around 3 mins) When Barry and Adam reach their graduation ceremony, Barry says "That's a lot of pomp...under the circumstances". The music playing at the ceremony is the "Pomp and Circumstance" March No. 1 by Edward Elgar. This is a British military march often used in USA graduation ceremonies.
The character of Buzzwell is modeled after the Pointy-Haired Boss from the comic strip Dilbert, and is even voiced by Larry Miller, who also voiced the Pointy-Haired Boss in the Dilbert (1999) cartoon series.
Bees in the real world have a very different biology than the bees in this movie. In the real world, male bees don't contribute at all to the honey-making process, which is done entirely by females. Male bees are drones, and just hang around the hive to mate with the queen. Drones have no stingers - that's the female reproductive organ and self-defense method - though bees do tend to die after stinging, as the stinger (which has tiny barbs on it) rips free of the body as the bee flies away. Also, male mosquitoes do not drink blood, only female mosquitoes do, as a protein source for their eggs, not as sustenance for themselves. Furthermore, insects have 6 legs, not 4. They have compound eyes, not simple ones.
Megan Mullally was originally cast as the Queen of the Hive and recorded all of her dialogue before the character was cut. The producers still wanted her to have a part in the movie so in the final film, she voices the Honex Tour Guide.
During the scene in the movie where Barry and Vanessa are at the supermarket, Barry says, "Son of the mighty Hercules!". Rip Torn, who plays the Pollen Jocks general, voiced Hercules' father Zeus in Hercules (1997) 10 years prior, of which was also his first animated movie.
Although Jim Cummings provided the opening narration at the beginning of the movie he did not do his role as Winnie the Pooh in this film because this is a movie from DreamWorks and not a movie from Disney.
In the Hive Times the headline refers to a Frisbee hitting the hive. A eyewitness is quoted as referring to the moment it hit as "Wham-O". The Wham-O Corporation was the original maker and seller of the Frisbee.