On the left, a 31 or 32 year-old Jeff Bridges in a scene from Tron (’82). On the right, a CG plastic-surgery version of “young” Bridges in the forthcoming Tron Legacy. The latter was achieved by youthing down the present-day Bridges, 60, with digital scrubs and touchups. Except the result doesn’t really look like Bridges. It looks like a cross between a celebrity lookalike and a Bridges dummy you might find inside Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum. It’s a lazy effort.
Jeff Bridges in Tron; 60 year-old Bridges de-aged through CG scrub-down in Tron Legacy.
Imagine how cool it would have been if Bridges had been convincingly youthified — if the 31 or 32-year-old version had literally been brought back to life. For “real.” I don’t know enough about CG techniques to speak with authority but I know a thing or two about what’s possible. And if you ask me director Joseph Kosinski should have told his team to digitally copy and re-work frame images from various Bridges’ films in the late ’70s and early ’80s and then integrate them into Tron Legacy. That way we’d be looking at Bridges as he actually appeared nearly 30 years ago.
I was told a few months ago that Kosinski is “the new James Cameron.” And I’m starting to doubt that. Cameron would have never settled for this.