It looks like Walt Disney Studios is moving forward with a third theatrical installment of the “Tron” franchise, and another big-name talent has joined the cast. Per The Hollywood Reporter, “Dahmer – Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story” star Evan Peters (“WandaVision,” “X-Men: Days of Future Past”) is in talks to join the cast of the sci-fi feature opposite Oscar-winner Jared Leto. The film is currently titled “Tron: Ares.”
Evan Peters Joins The Cast Of ‘Tron: Ares’ With Jared Leto
The upcoming sequel will be directed by Joachim Ronning (“Maleficent: Mistress of Evil,” “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales”). It’s slated to start shooting later this year in Vancouver. Disney has been toying around with a third “Tron” movie for quite some time, since the release of the second film, “Tron Legacy,” back in December 2010.
The first “Tron” was released in 1982 starring Jeff Bridges as video game designer Kevin Flynn, who is transported into a video game computer world that he created. He teams up with a security program named Tron (Bruce Boxleitner) to save the digital cyberspace. The film was not a huge hit at the time of its release, but it went on to become a cult classic for its then cutting-edge visual effects and groundbreaking concepts.
Its first live-action sequel was released in 2010, starring Garrett Hedlund as Kevin Flynn’s son, Sam Flynn. Bridges also reprised his role as Kevin Flynn, also portraying a maniacal digital avatar program based on Flynn named Clu. Boxleitner also reprised his role as both Tron and Alan Bradley.
The reception of “Tron: Legacy” was fairly mixed. The film has a critic rating of only 51% on Rotten Tomatoes. It also underperformed at the box office, bringing in only $172 million domestically and $400 million worldwide off of a $170 million budget. The film was directed by Joseph Kosinski (“Top Gun: Maverick,” “Oblivion”).
Following, “Tron: Legacy,” a sequel had been tossed around for years, and now it looks closer than ever before to becoming a reality. It looks like this new iteration of the franchise will not feature the return of the characters introduced in “Tron: Legacy,” specifically Sam Flynn and Quorra (Olivia Wilde).
THR also reports that the script for “Ares” involves a sentient A.I. program that is not ready for human contact crossing over into the human world. The script is written by Jesse Wigutow and Jack Thorne.
Leto is reportedly attached to portray Ares, who is the manifestation of the program. It’s currently unknown who Disney has in mind for Peters to portray. However, the script reportedly features a soldier in the computer world, along with an awkward gamer in the human world. Emma Ludbrook, Jeffrey Springer, and Leto are also producing the film. Russel Allen is attached as an executive producer.
It will be interesting to see if the film can manage to maintain its August 2023 start period, considering the actors’ union, SAG-AFTRA, has its current contract with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers set to end on June 30. Members have already voted in favor of a strike authorization. That means SAG-AFTRA’s National Board could potentially call for a strike as early as July 1 if a new agreement with the AMPTP has not been signed. Not to mention, some major names are calling for a strike. A number of major productions have already been delayed or put on pause due to the ongoing Writers Guild of America (WGA) strike.
Peters won a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Limited or Anthology Series or Movie for his work on “Mare of Easttown” as Detective Colin Zabel. Earlier this year, he won a Golden Globe Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Limited Series, Anthology Series, or Motion Picture Made for Television for his work as Jeffrey Dahmer in “Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story” on Netflix.