How CGI Pioneers Were Banned for “Cheating”

A new interview with the director of the original TRON (and co-producer of the new TRON: Legacy) offers some fascinating perspective on the history of both cyberspace and cinema. “TRON was supposed to be our Mickey Mouse…It represented a new frontier a chance to get to this place… cyberspace, first…

“Some of the old-timers at Disney came up to me and said, ‘this is actually what it felt like in the old days, when Walt was around.'”

Ironically, the movie’s special effects weren’t nominated for an Academy award “because they said we cheated when we used computers.” But the film singlehandedly spawned the CGI business as well as the merging of movies and video games. (“I don’t even think there’s a line there, anymore…”)

Now 27 years later, the new TRON reflects more than a quarter century of change. “[I]t’s a little like cyberspace is the same, but it’s moved on from being a frontier to a place where civilization really exists.”