Entrance Plaza

Promise of Things to Come

ENCOM Press Release December 1984:

From the designers at WED Enterprises and programming geniuses at ENCOM Computers, prepare to enter a whole new Grid personally designed by Kevin Flynn. Take the trip you’ve always dreamed of in a place you never knew existed. No bags or travel plans needed just step into your local ENCOM Arcade and be transported to a world where limits do not compute!

TRON Geosphere, the is set between the original TRON & EPCOT Center’s opening and the events of 1989 leading up to TRON Legacy. As such, many design elements are a blend of the two films and the park. Everything from Color Scheme, Lighting and Technology has been (and will be) based off this principle. In this piece, The “TRON” logo art has been adapted to reflect the evolution between the original and Legacy editions, even the 45° angled “T” is a reference to the TRON 2.0 (the multi-award winning game credited with restarting the franchise).
In future releases, TRON Geosphere will reveal more vistas from inside the system and other areas of E82 will reveal the importance of The Grid to providing new solutions to the real World of the Future.



E82’s original subtitle was “The Legacy of Tomorrow”. It’s a lot more abstract and expresses an intentional time paradox. E82 is mostly about the history of Epcot but it’s also about providing “new solutions” to the problems faced by today’s Epcot. In some ways, about the challenge of creating future Legacies of projects yet come and the statements they will make.

TRON: Geosphere is an exploration into the many possibilities of the unification of these two forward-thinking properties. Both projects were “born” with months of each other. Both were set decades in the future, and both were highly prophetic in their predictions of technologies and societal structure. The Computer Graphics for both were created by the same companies and the public’s first exposure to the majestic enormity of Spaceship Earth was as a multi-colored Glowing Wireframe that appeared to be a scene TRON itself.

Even in modern day one can see the influences TRON and Epcot share. From the rounded-block style architecture of Spaceship Earth’s “Legs” and Support structures, to CommuniCore’s massive over hangs. Conversely, the sharp-angled forms of Universe of Energy and Imagination are also highly evocative of the “digital frontier”. Most evidently, the beautifully designed “Project Tomorrow”, with its rim-lighting and glowing railings, seems to emanate directly from the TRON Universe.         

Originally, CommuniCore was to feature a TRON Arcade filled with the latest in video games. And the Film’s “Wormhole Sequence” eventually found its way in the last speed tunnel for the World of Motion. Unfortunately, both properties fell out of favor for very different circumstances.

In 2010, as the excitement for TRON Legacy was building to a fever pitch, the topic of a permanent theme park presence was heavily discussed, and the consistence was that if it was to occur Tomorrowland would be the obvious home for Disneyland. As discussion grew, the conversation traveled to the East Coast. And, naturally, most have thought that one Tomorrowland is the same as the next and the Magic Kingdom (already receiving plenty of attention in Fantasyland) should get even more attention with yet another attraction. At the same, the highly popular nighttime festivities of ElecTRONica lead others to believe that (to spite any suggestion of location) a Filmed franchise should only exist in Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

The ideology does not take into account thematic placement, story, motif, subject matter or even appropriateness. The only reason such a serious story like TRON could exist in present-day (read that “light-hearted”) Tomorrowland is if there’s no other choice. Disneyland does not have Wescot therefore the only place TRON could take residence would be in Tomorrowland. Walt Disney World has a much better alternative. 

For all of its story and character development concerns, TRON and Legacy had an overwhelmingly positive response to their aesthetics and music. Since any Theme Park experience is largely one of designed “space” and music TRON should have no problems adapting to the theme park audience. In addition, its subject matter is (as will always be) relevant and futuristic. Over the next several months, we’ll explore the many possibilities of bringing TRON home to Epcot. And in other sections of E82, we'll also examine why TRON holds the key to bringing Epcot back to Center … permanently.


New Music for "The Grid"

E82’s TRON: Legacy Soundtrack Review
Earlier this year, as the excitement and anticipation was building toward TRON: Legacy’s release, a question was posed: Will “TRON: Legacy” be the “2001” for this generation?
While not having seen the film, it’s quite easy to see the comparison in many moments of the score. Additionally, the Daft Punk Soundtrack references several Sci-fi Scores and Classical music pieces. It’s almost unbelievable that two electronic artists could have developed such an amazing amount of scope a depth in such a singular work.

In preparation for the film I, like many TRONophiles, began listening to a lot of Daft Punk. To be completely honest, there‘s only a few songs that I love listening too. (Mostly from the Discovery album) It should also come as no surprise that they are the ones that were most influenced by the original TRON film. The group’s Aerodynamic, Digital Love, Voyager, and Veridis Quo (Which translated literally means “Very Disco”) are very much from the TRON Universe. In the case of Digital Love, the song is bookended by an effect that sounds as if it was taken directly from Wendy Carlos’ original TRON score.
The thing that is the most impressive about Daft Punk is their ability to take noise (or industrial grind) and create new and interesting musical compositions. In listening to their music my reactions often remind me of the reactions of audiences to Stravinsky’s music a century ago. In both cases, the music is at first strange and seemingly “incorrect.” However, upon second and third exposure the startling nature of songs like Aerodynamic are revealed to be both edgy and beautiful.

Soundscape of “The Grid”

As difficult as it is to describe the power, heart, and emotion that this score possesses, I will nevertheless attempt to do my best to describe my impressions of TRON: Legacy as a strictly musical work. Every track of this seminal work is worth review, but in the interest of time I’ll be focusing on those of historical reference or classical interest…


--Overture – Adagio for Tron--
I must say, (having not seen the film) I sincerely hope that the Overture is also accurately represented in the film itself. This film is so epic both in reach and in tone that allowing one to be enveloped into the “World of TRON” sonically before the film would be an extremely effective and nostalgic device.
This particular piece is has a lot of reference 2001’s “Overture: Atmospheres” and has similar strains with the initial build-up to “Also Sprach Zarathustra.” The piece ends with an exclusively orchestral version of the TRON Main Theme. Another strong comparison can be made between the "Gayaneh Ballet Suite" and the beautifully melancholy strains of “Adagio for Tron.” The sadness of this track is so descriptive that even without seeing the film it basically gives the story away.

--Arena - Rinzler - The Game has Changed - Round One - Disc Wars--
A deadly undercurrent of progressive beats and low tempos which inspires both excitement and fear, all of these tracks carry a similarly dark a foreboding tone. Ironically, (and impressively) these action pieces seem to have no “Mickey-Mousing.” Warning: Although fun, these tracks can cause a small amount of recklessness if listened to while driving!

--Recognizer - Arrival – The Grid--
Once a bright environment for programs to interact, CLU has turned turn the TRON System into an almost post-apocalyptic dystopia with massive totalitarian overtones. This aspect of Legacy’s storyline practically screams for Vangelis-style interpretation. In the case of Recognizer the visuals for this scene are almost identical to those found in the Ridley Scott film. Arrival itself sounds as if it was lifted from the Vangelis score itself.

--The Son of Flynn– Armory - Nocturne - Solar Sailer - Sea of Simulation--
There is so much that is visual about this soundtrack, these tracks are appropriately electronic and somber. A particular fan favorite, Solar Sailer, is one the most beautiful and majestic tracks on the album. It’s really the emotional core of TRON Legacy. This should come as no surprise as this was one of the first two demo tracks Daft Punk composed for the film over two years ago. Director, Joe Kosinski said in an interview that the original version of Solar Sailer was changed during production but later reverted to an arrangement closer to the initial version.

--Fall – Rectifier – C.L.U.- Encom Parts I & II – Reflections –-
All of these tracks feature CLU’s theme. Epic is such a small word for this. In particular, C.L.U. is truly the hidden gem of this score. It has trace elements found in the best of Wagner’s Sagas with influences that range from Kismet to Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture. (All of which, are a couple centuries removed!) It’s powerful and percussive beats in combination with scope-expanding strings and finally the crescendo inducing Industrial Grind that is Daft Punk! The electronic elements of this piece always manage to sneak-up and surprise me. The piece is actually my favorite from the score!

--End of Line – Derezzed - TRON Legacy(End Titles) – Castor--
These are classic Daft Punk! With most of these tracks occurring within the End of Line club, they are catchy and bound to have you hitting repeat after most of them. Personally I can’t wait for our French Robots to release TRON’s “Club” Album!

--Outlands Parts I & II, Father and Son, Finale--
The dynamic between Kelvin, CLU, and Sam reminds me of nothing less than the classic story of God, Lucifer and Jesus. Kelvin creates CLU in his own image and endows him with incredible power and abilities. CLU (like the MCP before him), believes himself to be better than his creator and becomes the ruler of the air. Sam, the actual son of God (no wait, I mean Flynn) comes to the digital world to restore sovereignty and overtake the distorted and arrogant CLU. This is probably a little more than you’d expect soundtrack review to be but I always go deeper. And, to be quite honest this kind of allegory is expected considering the writers, Edward Kitsis & Adam Horowitz have spent the last several years “re-interpreting the Bible” and setting it on a tropical “Island.”
These themes are what sets TRON Legacy apart from its predecessor. Steven Lisberger’s original film introduced the world (although unknowingly) to the concepts that would eventually change the life of almost every person on this planet. These themes and the film that they’re created for give those concepts meaning and perspective in our ever changing world.

Geospheric Perspectives
It’s only fitting (and appropriate) that TRON and EPCOT should be linked together. TRON Legacy is no exception. If you read the credits you’ll find that Bruce Broughton provided consultation and none other than “Reflections of Earth” composer Gavin Greenaway conducted the orchestra!
On a personal note, the entire musical journey of TRON Legacy was a very emotional one for me. Not since the Millennium Celebration Album have I been so completely obsessed with a musical work. And, not since EPCOT Center’s original 1982 Entrance Plaza have I heard such a perfect marriage of the electronic and classical. As a person who always has one foot firmly planted in the past and the other stretching far into the future, this music seems almost tailor-made for my DNA, and specifically timed to provoke the maximum emotional effect.


Music from "The Forgotten Grid"


When George Lucas released Star Wars - Episode I: The Phantom Menace in 1997, hardcore fans and media networks quickly exclaimed that a 30-year-wait was at last over. This kind of overstatement not only borders on the absurd, but also renders the speaker completely inept. However, the story of TRON: Legacy’s journey to the screen is indeed one of the longest and mostly widely publicized in the history of motion pictures.
In 2002, Walt Disney Home Entertainment decided to lavishly celebrate the 20th anniversary TRON’s release with a Two-Disc Collector’s Edition of the film. At the beginning of this DVD was an advertisement for a new TRON game then titled “TRON Killer App.” In addition, the feature-length documentary about the film ended with concept art and discussion about the possibilities of a “new TRON for the 21st century.” With a next generation video game already in development, it appeared that the world was finally ready for the vision that Steven Lisberger put forth in a film that was literally decades before its time.
The release of Monolith Games “TRON 2.0” expanded the TRON Universe by extrapolating the ENCOM System into present day by following the journey of “Jet” Son of Alan Bradley and Lora Baines into the Computer. Stylistically and Musically, TRON 2.0 is a very close adaption of the world created for the original film. Many concepts from the film are perfected and brought forward. There are some truly beautiful environments, as well as some very well written music most of which was directly inspired by Wendy Carlos’ highly experimental score.
With less than a week before the official release of Daft Punk’s incredible score for TRON: Legacy, I thought that E82 should take some time to reflect on the evolution of TRON’s musical landscape. When the game came out, it had NO official score release, it had NO promotional Disc, in fact very little was talked about or even discussed in regards to this truly beautiful electronic work.



Re-Making the Score
After years of collecting music the “doesn’t technically exist,” NO was not a word I would accept in relation to this new work from the World of TRON! Not long after giving-up my search, I decided to make the soundtrack myself! I began unpacking the game’s “.rez files” and quickly discovered that reassembling the score would be no easy feat. Each theme had to be remixed piece-by-piece from 8 second long “riff tracks.” Literally hundreds of cuts! Then came the truly hard part assembly and editing.
Most Film Soundtracks if taken cue-by-cue are largely unlistenable. As a result, producers will often combine pieces to form larger compositions resulting in a structure that is pleasing to the ear. After playing the game several times and taking notes of all levels, scenes and plot-points, I began building the soundtrack to resemble that of a traditional soundtrack. Finally, artwork created for the game was adapted and modified to create a believable approximation of an Official Soundtrack. What you’ll hear are the results…



Download Disc One


E82 - Reloaded

Greetings Fellow Programs,

(Oh wait, this isn’t a TRON appreciation blog… or is it?)

I’m pleased to announce that most of my technical difficulties have been resolved, and I’m resuming my inconsistent yet mostly weekly posts. In a few days, the ramp-up to the Future World Soundtrack Series will begin. But before we begin, I’d like to share a very special new trailer to a very special film that has always been closely tied to the history of Epcot.
TRON, has always had I very close relationship to EPCOT. (1.) Released in July of 1982, the film ran with an EPCOT Center preview. The film’s poster contained the phrase: “The 21st Century begins October 1st 1982 at EPCOT Center in Florida” in the credits and TRON’s revolutionary Wormhole sequence began the finale to World of Motion until its closure in 1996. (2.) This footage was also used in the end scene for the short lived Journey into Your Imagination until its closure in 2003. (3.)
This is truly and exciting year for TRON and Epcot fans alike. Just recently, I discovered this modern re-imagining of TRON’s 1982 trailer. I thought this trailer and the events surrounding TRON Legacy perfectly encapsulates my vision and approach to the E82 Project.
E82 is about looking at the History, Music, and Design of EPCOT through fresh eyes by re-interpreting its original forward-thinking concepts with the technology and sophistication of today. Although I am just one man on this mission, it is my hope that my work will one day inspire Imagineers and Executives to look back to future for inspiration in creating Epcot’s new worlds of tomorrow.

1. EPCOT Center was not the only Theme Park to have strong ties to a film. Before, During and After the Disney-MGM Studios opening it had three: Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988), Dick Tracy(1990) and The Rocketeer (1991). These films were very much part the Eisner/Wells vision for “the Hollywood that never was and always will be.”
2. One should also note that many key scenes and art and from TRON were used as backgrounds on GM promotional items from 1982 until 1995.
3. 2003 also marks the release of TRON 2.0, the video game that brought TRON full circle: The Movie inspires the games, and the game (2.0) indirectly inspires the sequel, TRON Legacy.