Why Tron 3 Hasn't Happened Yet, According To Olivia Wilde

Fans of the short-lived (yet time stretched) Tron series still believe there’s plenty of stories left to tell in the computer-generated science-fiction universe. One big issue preventing more sequels bearing the name Tron had to do with box office. Even though the film earned a staggering $400 million in worldwide ticket sales in 2010, the reported budget of $170 million carries a lot of risk, with a low possibility of reward.  

Olivia Wilde understands, and explains that there are other factors standing in the way of Tron 3. The beautiful and talented actress caught up with CinemaBlend at the Savannah Film Festival, where her indie drama Meadowland played to a packed house on Opening Night. When we discussed Tron and the possibility of Tron 3, Wilde told me:

That’s the thing that I love so much about independent filmmaking. You do have that power to make a story, to make a film, if there’s enough passion and enough hard work – you can get together with enough creative people and make it happen. For larger films, and epic stories like Tron, you are more dependent. It’s not quite as possible as with a small group of filmmakers. It’s a different art form.

Although, a scaled back and more cost-preventative approach to Tron 3 might be exactly what Disney would have in mind. The $400 million gross proved that there’s an audience out there who want to see the continuation of the story involving Olivia Wilde’s Quorra – who, spoiler alert, has been freed from the Grid by Sam Flynn (Garrett Hedlund), son of original programmer Kevin Flynn (Jeff Bridges). But the studio’s not likely to pony up significant amounts of dough on a franchise that isn’t quite as dependable as, say, a Marvel title or Star Wars.  

Still, Olivia Wilde was very quick to tell me:

I don’t mourn the loss of the continuation of the story because I’m so grateful for what we got to do. And who knows? There were 30 years between the first Tron and the second Tron. Maybe I’ll be making Tron when I’m 60.

That comment mirrors a statement Hedlund told us during the Pan press day. Either they both have been talking, and planning out their retirement in the world of Tron 3. Or there’s a real possibility that the sequel could find enough support from fans that the studio finally has to answer the demand with a third story in the high-tech franchise.

Olivia Wilde can be seen in Meadowland in theaters and on VOD. The Savannah Film Festival continues on through Nov. 1. 

Sean O'Connell
Managing Editor

Sean O’Connell is a journalist and CinemaBlend’s Managing Editor. He's frequently found on Twitter at @Sean_OConnell. ReelBlend cohost. A movie junkie who's Infatuated with comic-book films. Helped get the Snyder Cut released, then wrote a book about it.