EXCLUSIVE: A new edition of Tron is coming back online. The Dish hears that Disney is in early negotiations to hire Joachim Rønning to direct Jared Leto in Tron: Ares. The film is being put together and has an August release date in Vancouver in mind.
Deals aren’t finalized yet, but this would mark the fourth collaboration between Disney and the Norwegian filmmaker, who helmed Maleficent: Mistress of Evil and Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales. He directed the studio’s Daisy Ridley star Young Woman and the Sea, about the daring journey of Gertrude Ederle, a New York teenager who became the first woman to swim across the English Channel. Jeff Nathanson wrote the screenplay and Jerry Bruckheimer is producing with him.
Now on to the Disney sci-fi franchise that started with the 1982 film starring Jeff Bridges and set within the computer program called The Grid, in which a computer hacker is kidnapped and forced to participate in gladiator games. The first was no more than a cult favorite, although its special effects were considered groundbreaking at the time. That fan base swelled around the film in the years to come as it played on cable only helped to increase its popularity, to the point that Disney decided to come up with a sequel, Tron: Legacy, in 2007 Proceeding in 2010, with Bridges reprising his role and Garret Hedlund and Olivia Wilde join the franchise. That film grossed $400 million worldwide, and Disney has been trying to figure out how to continue the franchise ever since.
The studio got in touch with Leto in 2017. It’s now in the hands of Rønning, who broke into Hollywood early on to co-direct Espen Sandberg Kon-Tiki, the 2013 Oscar-nominated Best Foreign Language Film and Thor Heyerdah’s epic 4,300-mile crossing from documented 1947 on a balsa raft across the Pacific Ocean. Young Woman and the Sea hasn’t been slotted yet, but it’s been heavily tested.
Written by Jesse Wigutow, Tron: Ares is believed to be a sequel to Tron: Legacy, which was directed by Top Gun: Maverick’s Joe Kosinski.
Sean Bailey and Sam Dickerman are the execs.
Producers are Justin Springer (Tron: Legacy), Leto, Jeffrey Silver and Leto’s Paradox partner Emma Ludbrook.
Leto, who will next star in Disney’s Haunted Mansion, will be represented by WME and attorney Barry Hirsch; Ronning is UTA, Brillstein Entertainment Partners and attorney Warren Dern.