In 2010, Disney brushed off its old 1982 movie about the inner workings of a video game called Tron to create Tron: Legacy, the start of a whole new franchise for the studio. Immediately, a new video game was created, a new animated TV show, Tron: Uprising, was set in place for the newly created Disney XD channel, and one of Shanghai Disneyland’s biggest attractions being built was the Tron Lightcycle Power Run ride. Plans for the movie’s sequel, Tron: Ascension were already in the works before Tron: Legacy (which starred Jeff Bridges, Garrett Hedlund, Olivia Wilde, and Bruce Boxleitner) even arrived in theaters.
Despite that fact that Tron: Legacy made $400 million worldwide, the film didn’t do as well as Disney had expected. First, the sequel was put on hold. Then, the new Tron TV series was canceled after just one season due to low ratings. Then, Disney started putting all of its energy into its new Star Wars and Marvel franchises. By 2015, Disney canceled plans for a second sequel, and it appeared that any hopes of a Tron 3 were dead in the water. Or were they?
“I guess I can say that Tron 3 is in cryogenic freeze,” said Joseph Kosinski, director of Tron: Legacy, at a recent IMAX screening of the film for a fan event reports Ramascreen.com. “It’s not dead. It’s alive, but it’s sitting there, waiting for the right time to move forward. I mean, you have to remember that when we made Tron: Legacy, Disney did not own Marvel. Disney did not own Lucasfilm…they own everything now. But this was before they owned everything, so from the studio point of view, they have a certain number of slots and a certain amount of money to make movies and if you can make a Star Wars spinoff or another Marvel movie, which are all doing incredibly well, a Tron movie, even though I think it would do very well, the question is: Would it do as well as one of those? That is more the reason we haven’t seen another Tron is that Disney stock is flushed with really successful properties right now. But that doesn’t mean we won’t see one at one point.”
And now it appears that the “one point” maybe closer. Today, The Hollywood Reporter announced that Disney is back in beginning talks with Jared Leto to star in Tron 3. The production is a just “blue sky” project at this point as no filmmakers are involved at this point, but should the film go through, it will be produced by Justin Springer along with Leto and Emma Ludbrook. The new script would probably not be a sequel either. Jared Leto would play a new character, Ares, who was a key character in the proposed Tron: Ascension script. Leto’s most recent film was Warner Brothers Suicide Squad playing the role of the villain The Joker.
How can they make a possible new Tron film sound even less appealing? Oh, I know…https://t.co/kM0uOHQiyq
— Charlie Panayiotou (@charlie_panayi) March 3, 2017
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The original Tron movie wasn’t a huge success in 1982 but made good use of the early computer generated imagery. Over the years, the film’s fan base grew, and many wondered what the film would be like if it were made today given how advanced CGI artwork has grown since then. Tron: Legacy didn’t take the world by storm as Disney was expecting, and then, after Disney’s Tomorrowland flopped, making just $49 million from a $190 million-budgeted movie, Tron 3 was scrapped.
Meanwhile, over in China, the Lightcycle ride at Shanghai Disneyland is incredibly popular. Collider has described the ride as “one part roller coaster and one part simulator with riders straddling neon-blue motorcycles as they speed along a track that weaves through the open air at speeds topping 62 mph, making it one of Disney’s fastest attractions ever.” ABC News’ Bob Woodruff is featured riding the Tron ride in the video above.
[Featured Image by John Sciulli/Getty Images]