Toronto’s finest geeks filled the Metro Convention Centre last weekend for FanExpo 2010, a Canuck Comic-Con honouring comic books, sci-fi, horror, and anime.
One of the highlights was a special presentation of early footage from the upcoming blockbuster sequel Tron: Legacy to a packed house of giddy fanboys. The original Tron himself, Bruce Boxleitner, was on hand to introduce the footage and chatted with Metro about the impact of his cult classic and the highly anticipated sequel.
“Tron was an acting job that I damn near turned down because I didn’t understand it,” laughed the actor. “I saw some early test footage and was so impressed that I had to do it. We thought it would be a big hit, but I guess that took a while.”
Audiences didn’t know what to make of the techno adventure in 1982. Video games and computers weren’t exactly mainstream at the time, but as they took over our culture the film developed a loyal audience.
“The reaction then and now are as different as night and day,” admitted Boxleitner. “It happened slowly. I’ve done sci-fi conventions for Babylon 5 for a while now and about 10-15 years ago I started to sign Tron memorabilia. I’ve signed betamaxes, VHS tapes, laser discs, and DVDs. The popularity has grown right along with the technology over the years and no matter what I go out to promote, everyone wants to talk about Tron.”
The popularity has grown substantially enough for a sequel to be produced a shocking 27 years after the original.
“That’s what I think is the real story,” said Boxleitner. “They take maybe a year off between Harry Potter movies, but to return after 27 years? That’s pretty special.”
The sequel seems to be designed for the ever-growing cult of Tron and while the fans are excited, it’s tough to say how it will play with general audiences.
“That’s going to be the question,” admitted the actor. “I think it’s permeated the culture enough that most people know Tron now and the technology is more accessible. But who knows? I’m excited to find out.”