That was my reaction the first time I heard about Disney’s planned sequel to “Tron,” the classic 1982 sci-fi adventure about a man named Kevin Flynn (Jeff Bridges) who is electronically trapped by an evil artificial intelligence inside a computer mainframe. And it still captures how pumped I am for the new film which, as producer Sean Bailey confirmed to MTV News, will honor the roots of the original—lightcycles, tanks and more—while acting as what he termed a “stand-alone sequel.”
“You don’t have to know the ’82 movie to come in and appreciate and enjoy this one,” he explained. “That said, we accept what happened in the ’82 movie happened in ’82. Our movie is set in 2010. We built a mythology that spans the intervening 28 years of, ‘Here’s what we think happened with Kevin Flynn and with [nefarious software corporation] ENCOM and all those principle characters. Here’s what we think happened inside the Tron universe and in the real world.”
In this mythology, Flynn disappeared in 1989. While there are a lot of theories as to what happened to him, no trace of the former computer programmer has been found. His son Sam (Garrett Hedlund)—a gifted tech geek himself—grows up never knowing what happened to his father.
“At the beginning of the movie, [Sam is] given a clue or a prompt and starts to investigate, which leads him into the Tron universe,” Bailey said. “And things have really changed.”
Of course, much has remained the same. Lightcyles, tanks and other vehicles—souped-up, cutting-edge versions of course—play important roles in the film. Bailey also said fans can expect the appearance of some completely new vehicles.
Bruce Boxleitner, who played ENCOM employee Alan Bradley and—within the electronic world—Tron himself, also figures prominently into the story. While the story kicks off in the real world, the majority of the film takes place in the Tron universe.
“It’s a darker universe than the original, and there’s a lot of intensity,” said Bailey. “It is a Disney movie. I think most likely we’re on the harder edge of PG. [But] our ambition was to make a movie that [adults] were as excited to see as an eight-year-old boy.”
Are you still excited for “Tron” after all these years? Does this news quell any nagging fears? Create new ones?