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It's been quite a long time since we last heard anything about Tron 3, the last piece of news dating back to 2012, but the project may be further along than we have been led to believe. That's because new reports are circulating saying that the sci-fi sequel is looking to start production this fall.
This story comes to us from the Vancover-centric website Vancity Buzz, which claims that Tron 3 will be heading to the Canadian city before the end of the year. According to their source, Walt Disney Pictures has given the greenlight to the sequel, and have set the production to begin on October 5th. The details pretty much end there, as the article doesn't mention any filmmakers being attached to the project or any kind of confirmation from the studio.
When we last heard about the next chapter in the Tron franchise, it was December of 2012 and Garrett Hedlund both confirmed that he had a three-picture contract with Disney and that he was attached to return to star in Tron 3. This news came shortly after reports suggesting that the project was being put in the development fastlane by Studio President Alan Horn - but clearly the movie didn't become too much of a priority, as we probably would have seen the finished result by now if it had. In the years since then, either the project hasn't budged at, or has just been moving silently under the radar. If this new story is true, then we have to assume the latter.
While some people may laugh at the idea of Tron 3, remembering Tron: Legacy as a largely unsuccessful project, there is good reason why Disney would be interested in continuing the franchise. The budget of the 2010 film was surely far too big in retrospect - reportedly coming in at $170 million before marketing - but the Joseph Kosinski-directed movie ultimately made quite a lot of money during its theatrical release, bringing in slightly over $400 million at the global box office. If Tron 3 were to get made, the budget would certainly be severely reduced, but Disney could wind up making a lot of money on the brand.
If Tron 3 really is gearing up to start production in Vancouver this October, we will surely be hearing a hell of a lot more about it in the coming weeks and months. For now we're just left with big questions. Will Joseph Kosinski return for the sequel, or will Disney find someone else to take the reins? If it's the latter, who would be a good fit? Would they try and find some way to bring back Jeff Bridges, or is his time with the series over? We'll be mulling over these questions up until these new reports are either confirmed or denied.