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Film Studies 101
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Tron: The Beginner's Guide
What you need to know before seeing Tron Legacy this week…

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It’s seen more often as a pop culture touchstone or a geeky reference than a shining example of filmmaking these days, but without Steven Lisberger’s Tron, the filmmaking landscape would look quite different – and of course sequel Tron Legacy, out this week, would not exist. But many people remember the original only from Bank Holiday telly or having watched the VHS version years ago. With Legacy arriving this week, we thought we’d turn back the CPU clock to take a closer look at it as a catch-up for anyone who doesn’t know an identity disk from a recogniser, and whose first experience with the Grid might have been via the trailers for Legacy…

WORDS JAMES WHITE
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Tron: The Beginner's Guide | Source Code
Source Code

"I realized that there were these techniques that would be very suitable for bringing video games and computer visuals to the screen. And that was the moment that the whole concept flashed across my mind,” says Steven Lisberger, the godfather of Tron. Lisberger’s fascination with the swiftly developing video game sphere crashed headlong into the defensive light ribbons of gaming enthusiasts. Frustrated by its closed-off nature, Lisberger swore to open the computer gaming world up to everyone. “I think that what I was attracted to various components that were the foundation for Tron. Having to do with filmmaking. Having to do with animation. Having to do with technology. And having to do with the fact that cyberspace at the time to me was going to be the next - it’s almost a corny word - but the next frontier. And so there was a great sense of adventure. And it was a very idealistic time to think about what this technology might lead to.”

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