The Princess Diaries is both a series of books and movies.

In the book Princess Diaries 6 (2005) princess Mia from the book comments on "The Princess Diaries 1 (2001) & 2 (2004)" movies :

Although to tell the truth, both of those movies took a lot of liberties with the facts. It was bad enough in the first one that they made my dad dead and Grandmère all nice and everything.

Now, in the latest one, I supposedly broke up with Michael! Like that’s going to happen. That was entirely projection on the part of the movie studio, I guess to make the story more exciting, or something. As if my life isn’t exciting enough without any help from Hollywood.

Is there a term for this kind of reference ? The book references to the movie or the movie references to the book ?

  • Specific name for exactly that reference or intertextuality is ok? Jun 11, 2019 at 7:41
  • @SZCZERZOKŁY no i just gave this as a reference - a generic term would suffice
    – Anu7
    Jun 11, 2019 at 9:00

2 Answers 2


Essentially, this is a..


Meta-reference is a special type of self-reference that can occur in all media or medial artifacts, for instance literature, film, painting, TV series, comic strips, or video games. It includes all references to, or comments on, a specific medium, medial artifact, or the media in general. These references and comments originate from a logically higher level (a 'meta-level') within any given artifact, and draw attention to—or invite reflection about—media-related issues (e.g. the production, performance, or reception) of said artifact, specific other artifacts (as in parody), or to parts, or the entirety, of the medial system.


  • +1 - Thank you this is the perfect word for it. I googled around a lot of examples as well - the above scenario fits perfectly into this word.
    – Anu7
    Jun 14, 2019 at 6:42

This type of reference is Intertextuality. Depending on academic it would be called "self intertextuality/meta intertextuality". Best example would be the intro to second book of Rambo. In First Blood Rambo dies. In movie he survive. Then they made second movie. And writer of source was hired to write book on that. He opened with "In my first book John Rambo dies. But because in movie version he did not let's pretend he didn't died in the book either. So here's his future adventures" (very approximate quote).

  • 1
    The Rambo example is not part of the story. It's an author's note or forward.
    – OrangeDog
    Jun 11, 2019 at 12:30
  • @OrangeDog In book context even bibliography is considered intertextual as it show to which texts that text is related to. Jun 11, 2019 at 12:49
  • @SZCZERZOKŁY If that's true (and I have no reason to think it isn't), this is a bad answer. A term that applies to literally any mention of another book within the printed volume, even when clearly not meant as part of the work of fiction, is too vague to be useful for what the OP asks. Jun 13, 2019 at 14:31
  • +1, i looked up intertextuality, and from what i gather its usually references to another text in one book.. so as to say its a book in book reference. Princess diaries did have a lot of these. But the above question - that is a movie in book reference - like a book-movie inception - the above example is from a book that references to a movie thats based on the previous book. SO its actually meta-reference (googled all examples based on below answer) - thanks for the information though :)
    – Anu7
    Jun 14, 2019 at 6:41

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