Disney rules the entertainment industry. Everybody from our parents to our goldfish knows this. From establishing the singular dominant superhero franchise to reinvigorating a galaxy far, far away, there are plenty of billion dollar cows to keep well fed. That doesn’t even consider the Pixar and animated film brackets. But what if there was even an ounce of that focus on one of their most promising independent properties: Tron.
I’m going to level with you: I love Tron. While neither movie is particularly great, I find the content ripe for the next big franchise. The issue with Tron: Legacy is that nobody seems to pay much attention to the script. The sleek visuals, exciting special efffects, and fantastical production designed were grounded by a script that read as a cheap ploy to reference a nostalgic property that never garnered more than a cult following. Now Legacy has a following of its own, one worthy of at least discussion. But just imagine if there were good ideas to work alongside the exercise in special efffects? Not that there is anything wrong with enjoying a full on popcorn movie or superficial elements. I enjoyed this theatrical experience far more than I did with Avatar. The real world scenes were shot in 2D, but The Grid digital scenes were in IMAX-3D, allowing a new sense of immersion.
Tron: Legacy is one of the ultimate music videos by Daft Punk. Some might go as far as saying Disney made a Tron movie for a Daft Punk album. They would not be wrong and honestly we should just left Daft Punk do whatever they want anywhere. Legacy is worth all of our money for allowing Daft Punk to contribute to more cinematic ventures. For no other reason than another soundtrack done by Daft Punk, please dear god let Daft Punk create a new soundtrack for another movie. It doesn’t even have to be the inevitable Tron 3, or Tr3n probably, but just allow them to blow us away with their emotionally charged orchestral crescendos.
We live in a world overwrought with technology. There are functioning adults among us today who don’t even know what it’s like to live in a world without access to google. This isn’t a criticism, it’s a fact; it’s a fact worth exploring. We’ve never been more connected as a culture than we are at this moment. Audiences Everywhere is based on this connectivity. In less than three seconds I could send a message to my cohorts on the Eastern U.S., U.K., and Australia. What does that form of communication look like in The Grid? It’s a digital frontier, right? The digital frontier should be no less exciting to explore than any of the best Star Trek stories.
Interconnectivity is already establishing itself via franchise storytelling, so why not tell a story about people connecting through a present form of communication? With characters communicating from all around the world, we could see a story that takes place anywhere and everywhere in the world simultaneously. And as much as I actually don’t mind Garrett Hedlund, we don’t need another white protagonist. Let’s see some diversity. Since it’s a Disney franchise, we could also make them young adults. BAM. A YA, science-fiction adventure franchise with socio-political themes. Take that, Hunger Games.
The tools are at the disposal of the Tron franchise to not only make Disney tell a universal story. I’m okay with another Tron film not hitting theaters anytime soon. We should all take some time off, recuperate, and aim for the best possible route for these stories to take. Third time’s the charm?