The largest positive int is 2^31 -- i.e., about 2 billion . That places a number of limits on Java objects and code, but really, these are not very significant. What possible use could you have for a 2GB object, anyway? Aside from an array, I can't even conceive of how you'd create one.
To answer your question: that limit affects a single object, not a chain of object references. Each object has its own limit..