“Now that we’ve got the backstory out of the way and we know this world and we know these characters, there’s a lot of freedom that comes with the next film,” says Tron: Legacy director Joe Kosinski. “When you look at Empire Strikes Back or The Dark Knight, sequels that were able to take the stories and characters to whole new places because you’d done all the hard work ahead of time, that’s a really exciting thing.”
Both The Empire Strikes Back and The Dark Knight were the second film in each’s respective series. Tron: Legacy is the second film in the Tron trilogy, and Tron 3 is the third. So it’s not quite the same as those other films. But it’s easy to see where Kosinski is coming from.
Yet, it’s also important to remember what made something like The Empire Strikes Back so great: The characters, which the audience already knew, were put through hell. That, and the fact that George Lucas didn’t write or direct the film, either.