Tron: Legacy / The Next Day

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Re: Tron: Legacy

Post by EricJ » December 18th, 2010, 11:27 pm

droosan wrote:Which is too bad .. since the 'Wizard of Oz-cameo' aspect of the 'real-world' actors playing their 'TRON-world' programs was kinda missing from this sequel
click to reveal content
(it might've been nice to see a Dillinger Jr 'program' in the 'TRON world', for example .. which I was half-expecting in the third act, since they'd gone to the trouble of introducing him early on).
As mentioned earlier, a lot of the Disney website "virtual Encom" hype was playing up a completely different character from "Richard Mackey" as the new jerk-CEO, who seems to be completely missing from the final script--And who I'm guessing would've been analagous to Clu's Michael-Berryman hench-toady in the cyber-world.
Instead, the boardroom scene and Sam's parachute jump may have been completely rearranged/rewritten in last-minute tweaks, "parallels" were less important, and (SPOILER) may have just been thrown in as literally a last-second afterthought.

But, the screenwriters started getting traditionally trilogy-hungry, so, judging from the audience reaction to the character, one never knows...
(IMDb lists (SPOILER) as an uncredited cameo by Cillian Murphy, who you might probably remember as other oily FX-extravaganza baddies... 8) )
Switchblade Sister wrote:The first one was pretty bad. But the world made sense, and the actions of the characters in the Tron world had REAL world consequences.
And the original film flopped. Big time.
YYW: As noted by, ahem, earlier examples, it's been pretty hard for the 80's-bashers and the I-hate-fanboys gigglers to just give up and let go of the old, old jokes--Pretty much the convention-bashing equivalent of NY'ers trying to make Boston sports fans cry about the Red Sox never winning the World Series, until, of course... ;)
(Heck, how many articles have we seen trying to exploit the iconically stereotypic image of the Tron Guy, after all these years, and he's still wearing the 80's costume?)

Those of us who Were Around Back Then remember the original movie as being a disappointment at the time, because Disney couldn't promote the "computer" angle as well as they could today (nobody understood computers back in 1982), and ended up trying to sell the "videogame" appeal to coin-slot Pac-Man fans, which the movie would naturally fall short of doing if you tried. And yes, most '75-'82 Ron Miller Disney screenwriting was legendarily bad, back in the days when "Return From Witch Mountain" was considered high sci-fi at the studio.
Disney's whole push with the sequel has not been so much to "cover up" the old film, as to unite the more tolerant anti-defamation fans, now that we DO get all the computer jokes, and can cut Lisberger's style a little slack. And at least we change our jokes, once in a while over thirty years. ;)
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Re: Tron: Legacy

Post by Switchblade Sister » December 19th, 2010, 2:33 am

"because Disney couldn't promote the "computer" angle as well as they could today "

No...it flopped because it was a bad movie. I have a nostalgic part of me for the original Tron--but that doesn't make it good. And I saw it at the premiere.

But the new film is an unwatchable mish-mash of hackery, and bad "design." Certainly, it's fine for kids 6 and under, but that's about it.

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Re: Tron: Legacy

Post by droosan » December 19th, 2010, 9:07 am

I grant that the premise of both movies is indeed flimsy, with regard to how computers and mega-corporations 'really' work. And that the original movie was indeed a critical and financial 'flop'.

But my 'twelve-year-old' self was thoroughly entertained .. literally by the first movie, and figuratively by the second. :mrgreen:

And -- while I do allow that the design aesthetic of TRON: Legacy's 'Grid' is perhaps not as 'iconic' as Syd Mead's work in the original .. as an occasional production designer myself (for much lower-budget films), I'd be hard-pressed to describe it as 'ugly' or 'hackery'.
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Re: Tron: Legacy

Post by Ben » December 19th, 2010, 9:29 am

droosan wrote:Plus which, I thought it was made fairly clear that
click to reveal content
the 'Grid' is on an isolated mainframe which is hidden in the basement of Flynn's arcade.
Sounds like what Walt wanted to do with Epcot, before opening its ideals up to the real world... :)

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Re: Tron: Legacy

Post by Dan » December 19th, 2010, 1:12 pm

Switchblade Sister wrote: And the original film flopped. Big time.
No it didn't. On a budget of $17 million dollars, it grossed $33 million in North America alone. That's no where near a flop. It was not a major success, sure, but it was still a success because it nearly earned the double amount of its budget.

And since we're on the subject of grosses, I can't help but feel that it's a little ironic the projected numbers are for Legacy.

It's expected to make around $43.6 million on opening weekend. It's budget is $160 million (not counting marketing and such). The original Tron, with a $17 million budget, grossed $4.8 million on it's opening weekend.

Now I'm not suggesting that the film will gross $300 million domestically, but it's interesting how similar the numbers were for both.

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Re: Tron: Legacy

Post by droosan » December 19th, 2010, 1:28 pm

The original movie was perhaps not helped by the fact that 1982 was a huge year for genre films.

E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial
Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan
Blade Runner
Poltergeist
Firefox
The Dark Crystal
Conan the Barbarian


.. were only some of the other 'hits' of that year. TRON did get lost in that shuffle, to an extent; it might've done better business, in a less-crowded field.

The Secret of NIMH also languished at the box office that summer, for the same reason. :|

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Re: Tron: Legacy

Post by Switchblade Sister » December 19th, 2010, 2:37 pm

"No it didn't. On a budget of $17 million dollars, it grossed $33 million in North America alone. That's no where near a flop. It was not a major success, sure, but it was still a success because it nearly earned the double amount of its budget."

Plus prints, and advertising, and insurance. That alone added up to no less than 20 million.

Nope, it was a flop.

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Post by Sid Philips » December 19th, 2010, 3:39 pm

Looks like Tron did less business this weekend than Tangled did in it's opening Fri-to Monday weekend (not counting it's Wed. & Thurs. Sneak Previews). And both cost well over $250 million to make (not including marketing and the multiple formats). Tangled opened in more theaters, but fewer screens than Tron. And of course, Tangled is a far superior, more mature film.

The original Tron did not recoup it's cost, even with Video/DVD sales. When the VHS first came out, it was priced at $75.00! And the first printing of the Tron DVD had an entire level of it's soundtrack missing, causing more re-print expense and refunds.

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Re: Tron: Legacy

Post by Dan » December 19th, 2010, 4:15 pm

Switchblade Sister wrote: Plus prints, and advertising, and insurance. That alone added up to no less than 20 million.
A couple things to remember:

1. Advertising back in 1982 is not the same financial amount as advertising in 2010. So what you think is 20 million was probably 2 million back then.

2. Note that I said that it grossed $33 million in North America alone. I did not count the the world-wide numbers, which was probably another ten million.

So again, it was not a flop.

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Re: Tron: Legacy

Post by Switchblade Sister » December 19th, 2010, 5:26 pm

The budget for marketing and prints was, in fact, $20 million. In 1982. And according to Disney's annual company report from 1983, they had to write the movie off. It lost money.

Just the facts.

You might, as I do, admire the film. But it wasn't very good, and audiences roundly rejected it.

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Re: Tron: Legacy

Post by Dan » December 19th, 2010, 5:51 pm

Of course they would reject it. It wasn't E.T.

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Post by Bill1978 » December 20th, 2010, 5:43 am

I'd like to get into the debate but I was too distracted by someone declaring The Dark Crystal a hit and possibly being a cause for TRON flopping.

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Re: Tron: Legacy

Post by droosan » December 20th, 2010, 6:09 am

I'd mentioned The Dark Crystal more to make the point that the sci-fi film genre in 1982 was a 'crowded' one. But it was one of my favorite movies that year, so :P

Firefox wasn't a block-busting 'hit' in its theatrical run, either .. before anyone jumps on that. But I dug that movie, too. :mrgreen:

I remember thinking TRON was kinda neat at the time (I was 12 years old) .. but there were nearly a dozen other movies which I preferred, that year. This may not have been the case for me, in 1981 or 83.

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Post by Ben » December 20th, 2010, 8:37 am

I was going to point out that Blade Runner was an infamous flop too, but could see what Droo was going for and, so, didn't. But now a couple of other titles came up, I thought I'd say that actually none of those films were particularly huge - apart from ET, of course, which was the film that ate the box office that year.

But even that was a slow and steady race, it didn't come out and do $300m in one weekend: it took the best part of a year to crawl to that amount, but the big thing was people kept going back to see it instead of those other films.

As Droo said, it was a crowded market for genre movies that year. What people forget is that, with all that in play, Tron actually did pretty good. Not great, but better than some of those other films, and with continued VHS exposure the film became one of those cult hits in the home.

Sure, it's still a geek's own movie, but remember this: if it hadn't eventually coined in a certain amount of money eventually, we wouldn't be discussing a "Tron 2" here at all...

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Post by Bill1978 » December 20th, 2010, 5:17 pm

droosan wrote:I'd mentioned The Dark Crystal more to make the point that the sci-fi film genre in 1982 was a 'crowded' one. But it was one of my favorite movies that year,
Just for the record, I too love The Dark Crystal and I had no idea it was a flop on release. I honestly thought it was this huge blockbuster of a movie. I watched it the other month after years of not seeing it and still found it captivating and a marvel to look at it.
Ben wrote:But even that was a slow and steady race, it didn't come out and do $300m in one weekend: it took the best part of a year to crawl to that amount, but the big thing was people kept going back to see it instead of those other films.
Oh how I miss the days where a movie was allowed to find an audience and not everything was dependant on its opening weekend.

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