A sequel with... or without Eisner?
on Friday, April, 16, 2004 1:30 PM
I hate to get political here and if anyone wants to voice their opinion about this, then feel free.
But I'm wondering if we should really be praying for a Tron sequel now of all times in the life of the Walt Disney Company. When I look at all the "cheap-quels" that Disney has made over the last few years, not to mention a lot of poorly made original feature films, I've got to wonder if we really WANT Disney touching Tron again right now. The recent track-record of films seems to indicate that Disney has primarily been interested in making tons of profit off their old franchises while putting the least amount of effort into them (ok, Pirates of the Carribean was a very pleasant and surprising exception to this rule, but I also found out recently that it actually happened by accident and is mainly due to Johnny Depp agressively pushing the writers into making the movie the he wanted it made. Many kudos to Lilo & Stitch as well... the first one anyway. the sequel, forget about it. Pokemon repackaged). And the fact that they have been spending so much of their time making films based on ideas that they've already come up with suggests a certain lack of creativity - or simply that new original films have been deemed more risky by Eisner and therefore are much less likely to see the light of day.
Now before anyone tries to slice off my head with a disk, don't get me wrong.. I love Disney - or at least the idealistic Disney that Walt created so many years ago, and the spirit of Disney that still sometimes reveals itself. But I don't like the corporate atmosphere surrounding Disney these days, and I haven't for a number of years. And I am definately among those who want to see Eisner derezzed(though I'm not a shareholder so I don't have any legal say in it).
My point behind all of this is that IF they announced they were going to make a Tron sequel tomorrow, I'd be very concerned about the quality of it. Under the Eisner regime, I think that Tron is far too unique of a sci-fi franchise to be handled by Disney at this time. The simple fact that they see no logical reason to make a sequel (as said by Steven Lisberger in another thread) tells me that Disney doesn't see the vision - the almost infinite potential that Tron has if it was handled properly (and if they did see it, they might not be able to tackle the challenge). Just look at Tron 2.0. It's a masterpiece, one of the best games ever made, and Disney who usually markets their properties to death to make sure that everyone goes to check it out, gave Tron 2.0 virtually no coverage at all. Not a good sign.
The very concept of Tron holds so many possibilities that it could easily be one of the biggest sci-fi franchises ever. The film that we know is but the tip of the iceberg. So in a nutshell, my concern is, knowing how great it could be, would we want it to get forced out half-baked, be given almost no effort, and have it fizzle out at the box office and kill all of Disney's faith in it so that it gets buried in the vault never to be seen again? I'll give the analagous example of someone who has no faith in a new weapon that's just been developed. Nevertheless, he has been asked to test it and he does... by lazily walking to the firing range and without even really aiming it at the target, shoots. The shot goes way off, and he tosses it to the ground, saying "see? I told you it's garbage". Personally I'd rather wait two more decades if I have to just to see Tron explode into a massive media phenomenon it could be.
If this sounds too harsh, my apologies - I don't mean to slap anyone in the face, and as I said, I believe in Disney, but I think they're going through a very rough transitionary time right now.