It's been more than 40 years since the original TRON wowed audiences with its unique take on what a "software world" could look like from the inside. Its bold audiovisual style has been replicated and referenced over the decades, and though 2010 brought us the divisive sequel TRON: Legacy, we keep coming back to the original at the end of the day because its "early video games" aesthetic is the timeless.
The Guardian's Simon Bland recently sat down with TRON stars Jeff Bridges and Bruce Boxleitner to look back at the 1982 sci-fi classic and discuss the process of making such a groundbreaking movie. For the most part, Bridges praises how most of the movie was shot in black and white (the frames were hand-painted later in Korea) and the fact director Steven Lisberger "lined the walls of the soundstages" with video game arcade machines to get everyone into the right mood. It's a brief but fascinating look into how the innovative movie was made.
Perhaps even crazier is Bridges' anecdote about how his hair (one of Hollywood's finest, many would say) started falling out because of the helmet: "I can’t remember why, but I decided to curl my hair for the part. For the scenes of me inside the computer, I had to wear these white hockey helmets. My hair had been bleached to get the curl in, and I remember it falling out because of the helmet. The peroxide would get hot and the roots would break". It's not like Bridges can't rock a bald head as effortlessly as his most iconic long hairstyles (Obadiah Stane in Iron Man, anyone?), but we can imagine the drama of the TRON situation.
While TRON: Legacy wasn't a massive hit, it did well enough to make Disney consider another installment more than a decade later. TRON: Ares, starring Jared Leto and directed by Pirates of the Caribbean 5's Joachim Rønning, should start shooting soon, once the still-unresolved SAG-AFTRA strike ends.
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