December 14, 2010 2:13:53 pm
His last turn on the big screen as an alcoholic country singer in ‘Crazy Heart’ won him an Oscar,but Jeff Bridges is far removed from gin and guitars in his latest,sci-fi flick ‘Tron: Legacy’,where he plays a man trapped in a computer game.
Though the name may not ring bells in India,the film is a sequel to the cult 1980s sci-fi movie ‘Tron’ and the 61-year-old actor is keen to know how the 3D generation reacts to it.
“Michael Sheen (co-star) was saying that he saw the first film when he was 11-year-old and how exciting it was for him. Twenty seven years ago,the original was a very cutting-edge movie. Of course looking back,it looks like an old black-and-white TV show,” Bridges said in an email interview.
The veteran actor played a hacker Kevin Flynn in the 1982 hit,and a lot of the film’s futuristic predictions have come true in the 21st century,where hackers have unforeseen power.
“At the time we were making the original ‘Tron’ there was no Internet. Our cell phones were these things we carried around in big suitcases. We shot that movie in 70 millimeter black-and-white,and then it was sent to Korea,where a bunch of technicians hand-tinted all the frames to make the suits glow,” reminisced the actor.
“Now in ‘Legacy’ it’s cutting-edge technology. We’re the next-generation of 3D cinematography after ‘Avatar’,” said the actor,who has been nominated for five Oscars in a career spanning four decades.
In ‘Tron:Legacy’,he does the neat trick of appearing opposite a computer-generated version of his younger self from the 1982 original and says that he was unfazed and excited by the prospect of reverse aging on screen. “I love going to movies myself and whenever I see a big epic film where the character has aged from being a young boy to an old man,traditionally there are different actors playing him in those stages. That’s always a little bump for me. But now as an actor myself,it’s very gratifying to know that I can play myself or the character that I’m playing at any age,from an infant to an old man,” said Bridges.
The actor has proved his versatility in a gamut of roles in genres as varied as romantic-comedies like ‘The Mirror has Two Faces’ to satires like ‘The Big Lebowski’ and ofcouse sci-fi.
But the actor who wore a white bodysuit in the first film,an image that became the cover photo of Rolling Stones magazine that year,is thankful that he is dressed in a more age-appropriate manner in the sequel.
The budget of the original was 17 million dollars,and it made 33 million in its first few weeks. “Legacy” is estimated to have cost 200 million dollars,so studio giant Disney hopes for a Christmas-holiday smash at the box office.
The film directed by Joseph Kosinski and starring Olivia Wilde,Garrett Hedlund and Michael Sheen along with Bridges releases worldwide on December 17.
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