[UPDATE: We know who the new writer for The Black Hole remake is.]
TRON: Legacy director Joseph Kosinski has been working the press junket circuit to promote his sci-fi project Oblivion starring Tom Cruise, which begins its theatrical run later this month. Hence, earlier this week, we received an update on the status of TRON 3 (which is developing under the "code name" TR3N) - in the shape of Kosinski's announcement that a revised script draft is on schedule to be finished within the next two weeks.
However, a third TRON live-action movie isn't the only gestating project Kosinski is currently working on for Disney. Today we finally have an update on his remake of The Black Hole, which the filmmaker has been linked to around three to four years now.
Kosinski has offered the following on the official title for TRON 3 (via Getty Images Entertainment):
“Yes, we do have a name but we’re not talking about it yet. It delivers on the promise at the end of Tron: Legacy in a really exciting way."
Legacy's ending has been a subject of discussion in recent weeks, following an interview with Olivia Wilde (who played Quorra in the film) about continuing the character's story arc in TRON 3. The second TRON installment did have its fair share of narrative problem and thematic shortcomings - which is something I and my fellow Screen Ranters have, well, ranted about many times - but it also placed down the groundwork for more interesting developments in the third movie, which Kosinski previously said will pick up in real-time after Legacy.
The filmmaker has also expressed a desire to "blows the doors off this franchise" and make TRON 3 the "Empire Strikes Back of the series," which is why he is remaining somewhat non-commital about the production timeline - until Kosinski has received, read and approved the script draft written by Jesse Wigutow (who's also writing The Crow reboot).
“We’ve been working on the story for a few years now. I’m really excited about the idea we have but the script is in process right now... I’m really looking forward to seeing how it all comes together… it’s an exciting idea I can tell you that.”
Meanwhile, the Black Hole remake is gaining traction, according to Kosinski:
“Yes, The Black Hole is on. We actually have some exciting, big news coming on that very soon. It’s a project that I’m really excited about… it's a deep space trip into the centre of the galaxy and we have a really great idea for the Black Hole itself…”
The Black Hole, for those not aware, is a 1979 Disney live-action sci-fi feature about a 22nd-century spacecraft that locates a long-missing vessel (commanded by a mysterious scientist), which has managed to reside near the boundaries of a black hole without being pulled in by its massive gravitational force. It was new territory for the Mouse House at the time - being the studio's first (gasp!) PG-rated film and costing (double gasp!) $26 million to produce, not adjusted for inflation - and has since become a cult classic of the genre.
Here's what Kosinski previously said about updating the original movie (some three years ago now):
“I saw ‘Black Hole’ as a little kid..What sticks out most is the robot Maximilian. The blades and the vicious killing of Anthony Perkins. That freaked me out and that’s definitely going to be an element that will be preserved. The design of the Cygnus ship is one of the most iconic spaceships ever put to film. From a conceptual point of view, we know so much more about black holes now, the crazy things that go on as you approach them due to the intense gravitational pull and the effects on time and space. All that could provide us with some really cool film if we embrace it in a hard science way.”
Travis Beacham (Pacific Rim) was the original screenwriter hired to work on the Black Hole remake, but it's not clear yet whether or not his script draft is still being used. However, given the positive early buzz for Guillermo del Toro's blockbuster - and the news that Beacham has been kept on to collaborate with del Toro on a sequel - there's a good chance Disney and Kosinksi are likewise happy enough to move forward with his Black Hole screenplay.
UPDATE: THR is reporting that the Black Hole script is now being written by Jon Spaihts, who wrote the original Alien: Engineers script that eventually became Prometheus, as well as The Darkest Hour. He is also writing the script for The Mummy reboot.
We'll keep you posted on TRON 3 and The Black Hole as more information becomes available.
Source: Getty Images Entertainment