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The Secret History Of Daft Punk's 'TRON: Legacy' Soundtrack

Updated April 30, 2021 7 items

In the hazy reaches of your mind, you probably recall 2010's TRON: Legacy, Disney's attempt to reboot the franchise around their 1982 CGI sci-fi spectacle about the hidden world inside a video game. TRON: Legacy, a long-gestating sequel starring Garrett Hedlund and Olivia Wilde, was not as popular at the box office as Disney hoped, which scuttled their plans to turn the TRON intellectual property into a viable revenue driver and theme park attraction. It was not from a lack of trying, though. The spectacular IMAX 3D visuals from director Joseph Kosinski made the movie a feast for the eyes. The omnipresent marketing campaign created a genuine pop culture moment. And despite the film's underperformance, the soundtrack album remains a beloved classic thanks to the participation of electronic music legends Daft Punk. Some people might be more familiar with the music than the movie itself.

While TRON: Legacy has now amassed a sizeable cult following, the soundtrack eclipses even that. But questions still persist as to who actually wrote the music, if Daft Punk wrote music that was rejected, and why they never wrote another film score before breaking up. 

  • Daft Punk And Disney Have Denied All Rumors Around The 'TRON: Legacy' Score

    The chatter persists, but everyone involved has stated emphatically that Daft Punk, and only Daft Punk, wrote the music for TRON: Legacy; that it is a pure Daft Punk album that belongs in the canon of their remarkable career. The Third Twin controversy proved to be a pretty silly publicity stunt. The album would be nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Score Soundtrack Album. A complete version of the album was released in 2020, to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the film's release.

    Joseph Trapanese, who was a long-time collaborator of Daft Punk's and worked on TRON: Legacy, told Birth.Movies.Death, "The fact is that (Daft Punk) was involved in every single note that you hear in that film. The credits are very fair on it."

  • Jay-Z Wrote A Song For The End Credits Of 'TRON: Legacy' That Ended Up Not Being Used

    The one and only substantiated claim that surrounds the music of TRON: Legacy involved Jay-Z, who was contracted by Disney to provide a single that could play over the end credits of the movie and be released to radio, MTV, and YouTube. Jay-Z and Daft Punk recorded a song, titled "Computerized," which included references both to the real world of hip-hop and the digital world of TRON. Sadly, the song was considered too much of a tonal shift from the fantasia of the movie, and it was dropped. Instead, the instrumental backing track to the Jay-Z song became the end credits music for the film. The song can be heard in various bootleg formats and definitely feels like it belonged on the cutting room floor.

  • Daft Punk's 'TRON' Legacy Lives On At Shanghai Disneyland

    Video: YouTube

    While Daft Punk's break-up makes it unlikely they'll be involved in any third film in the TRON franchise (which, itself, remains unlikely), their music and the influence of the movie live on in Shanghai Disneyland's TRON Lightcycle Power Run ride, which simulates the experience of the Lightcycle chase from the movie and includes the legendary music from Daft Punk. This ensures that millions of people will continue interacting with the fantastical world of a movie that's beloved for its visual and musical majesty.