Tron: Ares is the highly-anticipated third chapter in the Tron franchise, which kicked off with the original 1982 cult film and continued with the 2010 sequel Tron: Legacy. Revolving around a virtual reality simply known as “the Grid,” the franchise has dabbled in interaction with both morally good and corrupt computer programs. While the first Tron was praised for its groundbreaking visuals, Tron: Legacy also walked in its footsteps with its stunning light cycle battles, an iconic score by Daft Punk, and Oscar-nominated sound editing. Despite garnering a loyal fandom, a lot went wrong with Tron: Legacy, with criticisms aimed at its story and characters.
The production delay for a third Tron movie seems justified given how the first two movies shared a 28-year-long gap. The original wasn’t a big enough hit for Disney to make an immediate sequel, yet after Tron gained a cult following the studio decided to flesh out the franchise with the earliest plans for Tron: Legacy dating back to 2005. Tron: Ares has also received many setbacks, including Disney scrapping the idea for another sequel completely in 2015 and original director Garth Davis being replaced by Joachim Rønning. Now, with Tron: Ares finally out of development hell, the third installment is on its way.
Tron: Ares Latest News
The latest Tron 3 news is the addition of an actor fast becoming a household name to the Tron: Ares cast. It’s been confirmed that Evan Peters is joining Tron 3 in an undisclosed role, marking the first official casting announcement for the movie since Jared Leto took on the lead. Peters has had a long career in Hollywood with his standout role being as Pietro Maximoff aka Quicksilver in the X-Men franchise. However, he has recently found a lot of acclaim on television with his Emmy-winning role on the limited series Mare of Easttown and his Golden Globe winning role in Dahmer – Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story. Though there is no confirmation of Evan Peters’s role in Tron: Ares, he could make for a great villain in the Tron: Ares cast to go up against Leto.
Tron: Ares Is Confirmed
Plans for a third Tron movie go back to 2010, ahead of the release of Tron: Legacy. In 2015, returning director Joseph Kosinski was confirmed for Tron 3 with stars Garrett Hedlund and Olivia Wilde set to reprise their respective roles as Sam Flynn and Quorra. Shortly afterward, Walt Disney Studios canceled Tron 3. Then matters became more confusing in 2017 when Kosinski revealed during a Q&A (via Inside The Magic) that the sequel was still in the works but in a “cryogenic freeze.” However, Disney did not offer any official confirmation.
It took a decade since Tron: Legacy’s release for Disney to again finally confirm a third Tron movie. Appearing on an episode of the Light The Fuse podcast that streamed in June 2020, Walt Disney Studios President of Music & Soundtracks Mitchell Leib confirmed that Tron 3 was very much in the cards for the studio. Leib even added that a script had already been written and Disney was actively seeking a director at that time. He also hoped for Daft Punk to return as composers for Tron 3, but considering that the French electronic duo broke up in 2021, Lieb’s wish seems like a distant possibility.
Tron 3 Release Date
With filming for Tron: Ares starting in the summer of 2023, there are high chances that the project wraps up the post-production stages around the following year. Disney can then either eye a late 2024 release window or push the date to sometime in 2025. Even though Disney has not confirmed anything yet, various sources point to December 19, 2025, as the expected Tron: Ares release date. The IMDb page for Tron: Ares mentions the same. Tron: Legacy had a similar case, as its post-production wrapped up in November 2009, and then it was released in December 2010.
Tron 3 Cast
Jared Leto’s Tron 3 casting has proven to be heavily divisive. He plays the titular lead role of Ares, and while not much is known about the character’s origins, fans are already concerned because of the actor’s troubled past with pop culture properties. Leto has proven his acting capabilities with his Oscar-winning performance as Rayon in Dallas Buyers Club, and his portrayal of the villainous Niander Wallace Jr. in Blade Runner 2049 was well-received, yet Leto has also been behind some critically-panned roles like the Joker in the DC Extended Universe and the titular vampire in Morbius.
Leto will be joined by Emmy winner Evan Peters in an undisclosed role in the Tron: Ares cast. As the only other casting announcement made for Tron 3, it seems clear that Peters will play a substantial role in the movie as either a fellow hero alongside Leto or the villain of the movie. Given his recent unsettling role as Jeffrey Dahmer in Dahmer – Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story, it wouldn’t be hard to imagine the filmmakers wanting Peters for the villain role.
As for Tron: Legacy stars Olivia Wilde and Garrett Hedlund returning in Tron 3, no official casting updates have been offered by Disney. Even if Tron: Ares’ story is set years after Tron: Legacy, there might be chances of Wilde and Hedlund reprising their roles. After all, Tron: Legacy managed to not just bring back original Tron star Jeff Bridges to play an aged version of his character Kevin Flynn, but he also played the antagonistic hacking program CLU with digital de-aging effects. With Kevin destroying CLU by sacrificing himself at the end of Tron: Legacy, it would be difficult (but not impossible) for Jeff Bridges to return in Tron: Ares.
Tron 3 Story Details
The project summary on Production List reveals a vague premise that gives little insight into what Tron: Ares would actually be about. Referring to the sequel as “a compelling exploration of Ares’ journey,” it doesn’t give away much about the setting. While both Tron and Tron: Legacy were largely set in digital environments inside the Grid, the ending of the 2010 sequel set up some major repercussions for the franchise’s future. With Quorra stepping out into the real world, this was the first instance in the franchise when a program could turn human. In this sense, Tron: Ares’ story can even walk along the lines of The Matrix movies.
The official title of Tron: Ares could reveal major story details. Considering that Jared Leto plays a character named Ares, the “journey” in question can be his visit beyond the Grid with damaging consequences for humans. Ares was the Greek god of war and is no stranger to creating discord. While Jesse Wigutow serves as Tron: Ares‘ screenwriter, Joseph Kosinski told Collider that his original Tron 3 script (titled Tron: Ascension) dealt with an invasion storyline set between the two worlds. If strands of Kosinski’s script do get incorporated within the final Tron: Ares story, then an actual war of the worlds could ensue.