UPDATE: Right after I ran this story I was contacted by a trusted source who tells me that the movie is happening, and that Joseph Kosinski is back for it. So here it is, folks, Tron Legacy 2.
You know you live in an era of property-driven filmmaking when a movie like Tron, a flop, doesn't get just one sequel - which technically/kinda made money* but had no impact on the world - it also gets a second sequel. At leats that's according to local Vancouver blog VanCity Buzz, which reports that Tron 3 shoots there this fall.
First: VanCity Buzz is very much a local news source, not a hit-whoring movie blog. The report that they have seems to be coming from their local reporting, and so for me it's got a bit more truth to it than whatever nonsense nerdmovies.com makes up and submits to Reddit. And there have been a lot of rumors of a Tron 3 swirling about, even if nothing has ever come of it for the past five years. Could Disney have finally pulled the trigger?
The site says that Garrett Hedlund is attached to return, but that's about it. What the story will be is probably secondary, since if this movie is happening it's Disney's last attempt to move some toys and to maybe put together a collector's edition trilogy Blu (how many times will they make you buy Tron?). The big question isn't who is starring, but who is writing and directing. So far that's been the weakness in both Tron movies - they're spectacular looking bores. With their third at-bat I hope Disney dumps Joseph Kosinski and finds a filmmaker who understands not just the visuals but also the process of telling a compelling story.
* this is one of those times where it's very tough to figure out the truth of a financial situation. Tron Legacy barely made back its announced production budget domestically, and that doesn't even begin to cover marekting and stuff. It made more money international, but the general math holds that a film needs to make double its budget before it enters profitabliity. Worldwide, Legacy barely did that (especially if, like me, you find the official $170 million budget fishy). A film like this is supposed to drive ancillary sales - toys, games, cartoons - which it didn't, so the film's lack of a strong profit plus its inability to move merch make it kind of a loser.