The news about Tron 3 is already sweeping the internet. Jared Leto looks to be heading into another crazy fandom.
The first Tron movie came out in 1982, with the sequel coming nearly thirty years later. While not a blockbuster, Tron set the stage with ground breaking techniques of live-action mixed with computer animation. Tron followed Kevin Flynn, played by Jeff Bridges, hacking his way into a computer world. The 2010 sequel follows his son Sam, played by Garrett hedlund, entering a computer generated world known as The Grid, on a mission to find his father.
The third Tron movie was once called TR3N, Tron Ascension, and who knows what else.
According to Jared Leto’s tweet (not to mention the Wikipedia update), Tron: Ares is the new name. However, at the time of writing this, Disney has not confirmed the name.
Here’s a dive into the cult classic that is TRON.
The 1982 movie spawned multiple add-ons to the franchise apart from the sequel, and the now announced third film.
There was a short film called Tron: The Next Day. Taking place literally the day after the events of Tron: Legacy. Talk about an on the nose title. I thought I was bad with nomenclature. This was released along with the home-release of Tron: Legacy.
Along with this Disney XD ran 19 episodes of Tron: Uprising. The animation was 2D on CGI, which was very Star Wars: Clone Wars.
The character designer was Robert Valley, the guy behind Gorillaz music videos.
Uprising follows the story of Beck, a young program, who becomes the leader of the revolution in The Grid. He is trained by the greatest warrior The Grid has ever known, Tron.
Tron: Uprising is available on Disney+ in case you’re interested.
In Video Games
Of course, with a story revolving around video games, it wouldn’t be complete without a bunch of video game tie-ins. Now, while not all of them are straight up Tron games, we can see the influence that Tron has had in multiple areas. Disney Infinity, and Kingdom Hearts collects characters from across universes and puts them together.
Some of the games include Tron in 1982,
Tron 2.0 in 2003, an FPS originally on PC and Mac, served somewhat of a sequel to the movie’s story.
Kingdom Hearts II (2005), where they appeared in the level Space Paranoids. Which incidentally was the name of a game created by Kevin Flynn in Tron. It also became an arcade game in 2009.
Tron Evolution in 2010. A direct tie-in to Tron: Legacy along with Tron Evolution: Battle Grids,
Kingdom Hearts 3D, where they showed up in the level called, The Grid.
Disney Infinity, which also included figures that you could buy.
And most recently in Tron RUN/r an endless arcade runner.
In books and comics
Tron has had a few comic & book adaptations. A novelization of the original film, pop-up books, storybooks and more. In a tie-up with Tron: Legacy, a range of junior novels were released.
Back in 2003, a series called Tron 2.0: Derezzed was announced, but cancelled before it began.
In 2005, we got a 6-issue miniseries called Tron: Ghost in the Machine. This takes places six months after the events of Tron 2.0 (the video game).
In 2008, Marvel published a 2-issue miniseries called Tron: Betrayal. This serves as an official lead in to Tron: Legacy. Betrayal starts immediately after the original Tron movie, overlaps both Tron: Legacy, as well as the video game, Tron: Evolution. Thereby tying it all together.
In 2010, Marvel also released an official comic book adaptation of the original 1982 film. Which in my opinion is worth it only if you’re a collector.
There’s also a manga adaptation of Tron: Legacy that you can check out. I wouldn’t recommend it though, to me it seemed clumsily made, and the artwork seemed forced.
In my opinion, the biggest contribution Tron made to pop culture, was the Light Cycle.
5 real life Light Cycle replicas were made by Parker Brothers Concepts in Florida, one of which was reportedly sold for $77,000.
You can actually buy a working version starting at $55,000 from Parker Brothers Concepts. No, it won’t do the crazy stuff like in the video games, but it is electric, and really cool.
For everyone else, there is Tron Light Cycle Power Run, a roller coaster in Disneyland. No, I’m not kidding. This might be fun to try… someday.
Tron: Ares, sees Jared Leto as a supposed new character called Ares. He’ll be joined by the cast from Tron: Legacy. Mitchel Leib, President of Music & Soundtracks at Disney has stated that he would like Daft Punk to return as composers of the film soundtrack. Garth Davis has been tapped to direct the awaited third film in the Tron trilogy.