Recently, Collider held a ‘TRON: Legacy’ screening with director Joseph Kosinski (‘Oblivion’,’Destiny’). The event occurred thanks to IMAX and Disney on a laser-projected IMAX so you can just tell that visually alone it was a treat. For fans, the Q&A with Kosinski after was probably even more of one. Nothing has been heard about ‘TRON: Ascension’ since 2015 when the tentative title was announced along with the planned return of Garrett Hedlund and Olivia Wilde before Disney shutting it down but at the event, Kosinski was open to revealing a few new details to ‘Tron 3.’
Kosinski claims that the film isn’t dead but in a “cryogenic freeze” as they are currently preoccupied with their internal brand, Pixar, Marvel Studios, and LucasFilm. As it is, they are clearly working on their cash cows so where does that leave the third ‘Tron’ movie?
“I guess I can say that TRON 3 is in cryogenic freeze. So, it’s there. 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.”
As badly as die-hard fans would love to see more from the world of ‘Tron’ it is pretty obvious that it wouldn’t be the money making machine that Disney’s other properties are. If it does continue, we might not be seeing it on the big screen as one would initially expect:
“It definitely doesn’t have to be on a movie screen. I don’t know if you saw the TRON ride, which opened in Shanghai and was amazing…I think the TRON franchise is alive in rides and I think there’s still interest in exploring other things like VR, but as far as the TV show, I don’t know, I think that would be tough. As you saw on screen, so much of the world has to be created digitally. You can’t just go and film a TRON movie, or at least the TRON side of it, so I don’t know. I would never say never. There’s possibly a version of that, but that’s up to Disney.”
It doesn’t sound like a television show is likely unless they spent more time in the real world than not or had a solid plan on digitally bringing everything to life on a budget.
Now, as to what ‘Tron 3’ would have been about:
“The movie was called, “TRON: Ascension,” I think that’s out there. I think we got the script to about 80%. We were in good shape. We were probably eight or nine months out, which is still a good amount of distance from being ready to shoot it, but I think the script was in good shape. What I’m excited about is the concept, which is an invasion movie from inside the machine coming out as opposed to one we’ve usually seen. So we hinted at that at the end of Legacy with Quorra coming out, but the idea for Ascension was a movie that was, the first act was in the real world, the second act was in the world of TRON, or multiple worlds of TRON, and the third act was totally in the real world. And I think that really opens up, blows open the concept of TRON in a way that would be thrilling to see on screen. But there’s also a really interesting character study in Quorra and a “Stranger in a Strange Land,” trying to figure out where she belongs having lived in the real world for a few years, and where does she fit in.”
How would humanity stack up against the AI if it came into the physical world? We would surprisingly be on some pretty even ground as:
“I don’t see them having superpowers. I don’t see them being able to shoot lasers from their eyes or do what I would consider to be a superhero-type movie. But in her DNA itself, her being the first digital-human hybrid, there’s something in her being that allows objects from inside the Grid to exist in the real world and makes them permanent, so that was the idea. So I think the idea is strong, it’s just a matter of the right time and the right place and the stars aligning as they have to do for movies.”
Sadly, this is doubtfully something we’ll ever actually see realized. If a third ‘Tron’ film were to be made it would either have to be another huge time jump or a new way to return to the world if it didn’t happen soon.
Do you wish this iteration of ‘Tron’ had been realized or are you happy that the series ended where it did? Share your thoughts below!
Stuart Conover is an author, blogger, and all around geek. When not busy being a father and husband he tries to spend as much time as possible immersed in comic books, science fiction, and horror! Would you like to know more? Follow him on Twitter!