Tron: Legacy The Costumes & High End Merchandise
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In 1982, Tron not only became one of the first movies to make extensive use of computer graphics, but the high-concept film also put those special effects front and center on the film’s costumes. The Dec. 17 release of Tron: Legacy — starring Olivia Wilde, Garrett Hedlund and the return on Jeff Bridges as computer genius Kevin Flynn, who has mysteriously disappeared through a portal into another world — is hoping to accomplish the same thing.
But being slavish to the original wasn’t something costume designer Michael Wilkinson and co-costume designer Christine Bieselin Clark (who also worked together on 300 and Watchmen) thought made sense when starting this project more than two years ago.
“Tron was this cutting-edge film, and we wanted to be reverent to what the fans loved about it, but the spirit is what we wanted to capture,” Clark says. “Many fans thought the suits for this film should have been white, but the world’s darkness is the basis of the suit color, and the exuding white light is the goodness inside.”
During the filming of director Joe Kosinski's Tron: Legacy, the movie's stars, which include Jeff Bridges, Garrett Hedlund and Olivia Wilde, often had to wear the iconic glowing uniforms through 20-hour shoots, which is why comfortability was a major design concern during the two months it took designers to craft the spectacular body armor.
"We looked at high-tech sporting equipment, soldier concept work from the military and haute couture," says costume designer Michael Wilkinson about the inspiration he and co-costume designer Christine Bieselin Clark used to create the character's state-of-the-art helmets and body armor.
"Many fans thought the suits for this film should have been white, but the (Tron: Legacy) world's darkness is the basis of the suit color, and the exuding white light is the goodness inside," explains costume designer Christine Bieselin Clark.
Disney Consumer Products has teamed with popular brands -- from Adidas and Oakley to high-end designers Hayden-Harnett and Rousseau -- to produce over 150 Tron: Legacy-inspired items that range from stylish kicks and designer pumps to snowboards and motorcycle jackets.
One of the most exclusive pieces in the Tron: Legacy collection is the Tron Icon Necklace by Rotenier, which retails for $2,600.
Popular NYC-based accessories designers Hayden-Harnett joined the Tron: Legacy design revolution with its contribution of the exclusive Clu Hobo Bag.
Inspired by the film's stylish female crusader Quorra, the limited edition, five-inch platform shoes from Jerome C. Rousseau retails for $795.
Sportswear companies Burton, Hurley, Adidas and Oakley are among the many designers that joined the Tron team to produce exclusive items that include backpacks, sunglasses and snowboard boots.
"The light is another character in this movie," says costume designer Christine Bieselin Clark. "It's the person's soul. The white light is pure and good, while the orange is considered devilish or evil."
Oscar winner Jeff Bridges, who starred in 1982's Tron, returns in the role of Kevin Flynn.
Prior to Tron: Legacy's Dec. 17 premiere, Disney will debut a Tron pop-up shop in Los Angeles for a six-week run at Culver City's Royal-T Cafe beginning Nov. 18. The hot spot will also serve up "Lightcycle salads" and "Identity Disk cakes."
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