When the Walt Disney Company and Marvel announced their joint partnership a few years ago, both sides knew that there were some incredible creative opportunities and a whole lot of coin to be made in the years ahead. That more or less sums up what the Disney Channels’ President and Chief Creative Officer Gary Marsh said during a presentation at TCA. While I’m paraphrasing, of course, Marsh did go on to announce the next step in their partnership: a block of Marvel-themed series on Disney XD which will be called Marvel Universe, featuring a new collaboration, Ultimate Spider-Man. The new iteration will be the first time that Spidey, voiced by Drake Bell (Superhero Movie), won’t be going it along, as he’ll be joined by White Tiger, Iron Fist, Power Man and Nova, all of Nick Fury’s S.H.I.E.L.D. While that’s good news for fans of the web-head, Marsh also talked about the premiere of their anticipated animated series, TRON: Uprising. Hit the jump to see what he had to say.
We brought you a teaser trailer for TRON: Uprising nearly a year ago as well as a clip from this past summer’s Comic-Con. Now, two years in the making, Disney is planning on rolling out the full series in June of this year. But first, they’re taking an interesting approach on the debut. According to Marsh:
“We’re taking a 10-part micro-sode approach, which will begin airing three-minute pieces in April.”
So, they’re probably going to attach these three-minute micro-clips at the end of other popular shows or perhaps port them over to a TRON: Uprising website? No idea. In the meantime, what we do know is that the animated series will feature a combination of traditional (2D) animation with 3D CG animation that will:
“Iffer a revolutionary visual aesthetic that is really going to help redefine the kind of animation that you can do on television around the globe. And luckily, we’ve been able to use the same writers, the same producers, and some of the same vehicle designers, who’ve created the images for the feature film, in the series.”
As for timing, this series will play out between the original TRON and TRON: Legacy. Here’s what Marsh has to say about the plot:
“What’s happened is that Tron has been badly injured by villainous Clu, but he has found a protege, a brilliant young mechanic, who is another program like himself, named Beck and voiced by Elijah Wood, who TRON decides he is going to train to be the next TRON.”
I’ve never been a huge fan of the TRON franchise myself, but I do like the look of it and what they’re doing with the stories. As long as there are plenty of light-cycle races, I won’t complain too much.
“When The Walt Disney Company and Marvel announced their partnership a couple of years ago, I very publicly stated that I believed that Disney XD was going to be one of the primary beneficiaries of that partnership. And today, we are announcing the next evolution of that relationship. So, on April 1st, we will roll out a brand new Marvel branded block on Disney XD called Marvel Universe, which will showcase our first new animated series, a collaboration with Marvel, called Ultimate Spider Man. Now, joining Spider Man will be the second season of The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes. The new Spider Man will feature a teenage Peter Parker played by Drake Bell, but this time, he’s no longer going it alone. As the newest member of Nick Fury’s S.H.I.E.L.D. organization, he finds himself on a team with four other teenage Marvel superheroes. He’s got White Tiger, Iron Fist, Power Man and Nova. Now, this has implications for Spidey, of course, because it means that, for the first time, while he’s losing his independence, he’s gaining a cadre of crime fighting cohorts.”