Disney Is Reentering the ‘Tron’ Universe With the Franchise’s Third Installment: ‘Tron: Ares’

first look from Disney's 2025 live-action movie
© 2024 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Photo by Leah Gallo

Disney is returning to the Grid and the world of Tron.

The company recently announced that Tron: Ares, the third film in the sci-fi franchise, began production in Vancouver in January and is slated for release in 2025.

Along with the announcement, Disney released a cool first-look image of star Jared Leto as the title character, Ares (Leto also shared the pic on social media with the caption “See you on the grid…”).

Part of the image is pictured above, and here’s a full look:

first look from Disney's 2025 live-action movie "Tron-Ares." We see a figure in black, Ares, dressed in a black suit and helmet. He is inside a computer world that is illuminated by a red light that contrasts in the background against his black suit.

© 2024 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Photo by Leah Gallo

Tron: Ares, of course, follows Disney’s seminal 1982 classic Tron, which was led by Jeff Bridges as a programmer transported into the software world of a computer mainframe. Bruce Boxleitner, David Warner and Cindy Morgan costarred in the groundbreaking movie, one of the first to use extensive computer-generated imagery.

Tron did not do as well at the box office as hoped — the 1982 Bally Midway arcade video game (seen in the video below) with four mini-games based on the movie, like the Light Cycle race, apparently earned more than the film itself. But Tron was generally well received and its legacy is still felt, especially in computer effects.

It was followed up in 2010 with Tron: Legacy, which saw Bridges and Boxleitner returning, joined by Garrett Hedlund, Olivia Wilde and Michael Sheen. A third installment had been slated to begin production in early 2015, but the franchise stalled when Disney ultimately decided not to continue.

Tron is now being restarted with Ares. The little plot details we know at this point show that its premise follows the opposite of the previous two movies: Here, Leto’s Ares, a highly sophisticated Program, is sent from the digital world into the real world on a dangerous mission, marking humanity’s first encounter with A.I. beings.

Costarring with Leto are Greta Lee, Evan Peters, Hasan Minhaj, Jodie Turner-Smith and Gillian Anderson.

Joachim Rønning, who helmed Maleficent: Mistress of Evil (2019) and co-directed Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales (2017) with Espen Sandberg, is directing Tron: Ares.

“I’m excited to be part of the Tron franchise and bring this new film to fans around the world” Rønning said in a release.

Tron: Ares builds upon the legacy of cutting-edge design, technology and storytelling. Now more than ever, it feels like the right time to return to the Grid.”

Tron: Ares is slated for release in 2025.