From the WDW Radio Archives…
Spoiler alert… I’m a bit of a nerd. Growing up, I loved (love) video games and technology, storytelling, adventure, and the unknown… and that hasn’t changed much.
More than 40 years ago, a Disney film was released that would forever change the science fiction genre, as well as animation, video gaming and the lives of many young geeks like myself. Smart, stylish and fun, the game grid of Tron was groundbreaking, and in 2010, Tron was reborn with the Tron: Legacy film (and do you remember the Tronorail at Walt Disney World, ElecTRONica at Disneyland, or what about Tron: Uprising on Disney XD… with all of them now on Disney+).
So in 2012, on WDW Radio show # 277, a little, nerdy dream of mine came true, as I had the opportunity to speak in an exclusive interview with one of the original film’s stars, Cindy Morgan, who played the dual role of Lora and Yori. She may or may not have also been the subject of a bit of a boyhood crush of mine for her role in Caddyshack.
Cindy joined me to talk about her career and role in Tron, as she shared stories of the making of the films, the Tron phenomenon, her fans and much more. With the opening of TRON: Lightcycle Run this week in Magic Kingdom, the timing for listening back to my conversation with Cindy (who I still love seeing at comic and conventions) seemed appropriate. I may just have to reach out to her again for the follow up conversation we discussed.
Are you a fan of the original TRON? What about TRON: Legacy? Have you experienced TRON Lightcycle Run in Magic Kingdom (or Shanghai Disneyland) yet?
Share your thoughts in the WDW Radio Clubhouse, or call the voicemail at 407-900-9391 (WDW1) and share your story on the show.
But for now… sit back, relax, and enjoy this week’s episode from the Archives on the WDW Radio show.
You can listen to the original episode in it’s entirety at WDW Radio # 277
Let me help you build your brand and business and turn your passion into your profession, or speak at your event, conference, or school! – Learn more at LouMongello.com
Thanks to Cindy Morgan for joining me!
Comment and share your questions, thoughts, and tips in our WDW Radio Clubhouse Community on Facebook or call the Voicemail and be heard “On the Air” at 407-900-9391
Listen to this week’s show and use the form below to enter our weekly trivia contest for a chance to WIN a Disney Prize Package!
Book your trip to Walt Disney World, Disneyland, Disney Cruise Line, Disney Destination… or anywhere through our friends at Mouse Fan Travel. Contact them for a free, no-obligation quote!
Lou Mongello: Hello my friend, and welcome to another episode from the WW Radio Archives. I am your host, Lu Manillo, and this is show number 717. And each week I'm gonna select an evergreen episode from the archives to share with you that maybe you haven't heard before or one you hadn't heard in a long time.
From interviews to top tens, relevant reviews and guides and way back machines and more. It's a great way to visit or revisit some of your favorite episodes, including ones that you have suggested from the Vault. And now with these new episodes and opportunities, I think in the feed, I'm gonna introduce an experiment with a couple of different types of content in a variety of formats.
For example, instead of a show from the archive, I may do a show about something that is time sensitive. Maybe instead of a top 10, I do a top five show, maybe by myself. Maybe I'll even resurrect my Disney to minute segments, but an audio format. I'd also love to take some ideas and inspiration from you and go from there and we can talk about even more Marvel and Star Wars and other aspects of our fandom and love of Disney and see where it takes.
Because I think this really does open up a world of opportunities in an effort to do more for and with you, bring you more fun, value, laughter, and maybe even a little inspiration. And for the archive episodes, like this week, I'm taking out the relevant segment and gonna cut out the intro and outro and contests and we're applicable maybe some of the out-of-date news and rumors.
If you want to hear the full episode, I'm gonna let you know the original show. So you can always go back into your podcast player or feed and listen to the entire thing. And like I said, when I first introduced this concept, I'm not taking anything away. I'm not gatekeeping anything new that you have to pay for.
I just think this is a fun way to share some of my favorites and some of yours that maybe you have missed or never heard before. So I'm gonna open up the archives again this week and spoiler alert, I'm a bit of a. Uh, growing up I loved and still love video games and technology and storytelling, adventure and the unknown, and that hasn't really changed much over the last number of decades.
And more than 40 years ago, a Disney film was released that would forever change. Really the science fiction genre as well as animation and video games, and the lives of many young geeks like myself. Smart, stylish, and fun. The game Grid of Tron was groundbreaking and in 2010, Tron was reborn and not really rebooted with the Tron Legacy film.
And do you remember the Tron Rail at Walt Disney World Electronica at Disneyland? Or what about Tron Uprising on Disney XD with all of them now obviously being on Disney Plus. So in 2012 on WW Radio O Show number two 70. A little nerdy dream of mine came true as I had the opportunity to speak in an exclusive interview with one of the original Tron films stars, Cindy Morgan, who played the dual role of Laura and Yuri.
She may or may not have also been the subject of a bit of a boyhood crush of mine for her role in Caddy Shock, but Cindy joined me to talk about her career and her role in Tron as she shares stories of the making of the film, the Tron. Phenomenon, her fans and a lot more. And now with the opening of Tron Light Cycle Run this week in Magic Kingdom, I think the timing for listening back to my conversation with Cindy, who I, by the way, I still love seeing it.
Comic uh, and fan conventions seemed appropriate. And I may just have to reach back out to her again for the follow up conversation we discussed at the end of the episode. And I wanna know from you, are you a fan of the original Tron movie? What about Tron Legacy? Have you experienced Tron Light Cycle Run in Magic Kingdom or in Shanghai Disneyland yet?
Share your thoughts over in the wwe dot clubhouse at wwe radio.com/clubhouse or call the voicemail. Be heard on. At 4 0 7 909 3 9 1. That's 4 0 7 900 w DW one. And to share your story, I'll play it on the show. But for now, sit back, relax, and enjoy this week's episode from the WW n Archives on the WW Radio Show.
End of line.
Cindy Morgan: Hey, hey, hey. It's the big master control program. Everybody's been talking.
Greetings, I've got a little challenge. You son, a new recruit. He's a tough, but I usual for him, blow him away.
Lou Mongello: I am undoubtedly and unabashedly a child of the eighties and notwithstanding my hyper color t. My Michael Jackson jacket, my parachute pants, capos, and ray bands. I also grew up in video arcades and on the music and movies of the decade, and even today, my iPhone is filled with nothing but eighties and some Disney music, but I also love the movies as well.
And two of my favorites, one comedy and the other sci-fi included characters that were every teenage boy's dream. The beautiful, carefree, lacy under all and Caddy Shack and the equally beautiful Laura and Yori who existed inside a video game in Disney's original Tron movie, and I don't know who I had a bigger crush on, but it doesn't matter because both characters were played by the lovely and talented Cindy.
And after 30 years, I finally have the pleasure and opportunity to sit down and chat with her. Cindy, I was tempted to sing the, I was Born to Love You. I was born to lick your face on. I was,
Cindy Morgan: I was lick your face. I was one, two. But you were born to
Lou Mongello: roughly first. But instead, I will say, greetings program and welcome to W DW Radio.
Cindy Morgan: There you go. Oh, that's too funny. That's too funny, Lou. You've got a lot more personality than you did when the first time I met you at the table at MegaCon. This is really interesting.
Lou Mongello: I I was, I, I'm sure that I was like many of the 44 year old guys that walk up to your table, that instantly become 14.
Cindy Morgan: And that, so you, you said that's exactly what happened. It's so, it's so sweet and it's so charming, but, so true. Yeah. It, it, it's, it's, it's the funny, it's, it's, it's the sweetest thing to watch. And it's kind of funny because I can see, you know, guys approaching, well, I'm gonna say this to Lacy and I'm gonna say that to Jorie.
As they get closer and closer, I start seeing that 14 year old little boy and I just smile and then it's all over. So,
Lou Mongello: It's pretty, it's funny and embarrassing because it's true.
Cindy Morgan: No, not, not, not at all. Not at all. It's, it's charming. You've gotta know what it is. So, so it's, it, it's pretty cool. So, yeah. And I'm glad you took the time, uh, to actually set up an actual interview, um, like this so that, because it meant at a show, it's, it, you know, my head would be going and swiveling in different directions and this is, this is great.
We could. Finish a sentence, maybe even a conversation.
Lou Mongello: Yeah. We met briefly at the D 23 Expo in California. We met again, like you said, over at, uh, at MegaCon, but it's great to be able, and you know, I wasn't kidding when I said, you know, I sort of waited 30 years to be able to talk to you because I was a huge fan.
I'm a, I'm a fan first of, uh, of both films. And, uh, look, I, I would, like I said, I was a, a child of the eighties and you can interpret that very easily to mean that I was a total nerd. Uh, I loved watching sci-fi movies like Tron over and, and over and over again. Oh dear. Um, you know, rumor has it, Cindy and I, yeah.
Cannot imagine this, that you were sort of a bit of a nerd growing up too, and I will tell. No one, no girl in the computer club looked like him.
Cindy Morgan: Well, I wasn't. I was a nerd. And those super thick glasses I'm wearing in Tron are stunk glasses because I walked in wearing my real glasses in the morning, cuz your eyes get tired for God's sake.
And the the director saw and said, that's great. We love the look. So, so the, the prop department made me a pair of glasses to wear in the film, which is just screaming hilarious. And yeah, I was a nerd and I was actually gonna go to the Illinois Institute of Technology initially. Uh, to study mechanical engineering, but, and, and was accepted.
I went to the open house, but I came out of 12 years of Catholic school, and the last four were all girls, and I wasn't ready. I, I, I, I could, I was stammering and so I made a hard left turn and went to nor Illinois, majored in speech, thank God, and communications, and, uh, changed everything, but I still got to use.
Some technical background. Uh, when I worked in radio and television, uh, I got my FCC license and, and did morning drive in Chicago, which was a great experience and ran camera and sound, which helped me when I got to Cady Shack.
Lou Mongello: Yeah, so, and it's funny because it's, we sort of had parallel lives growing up, wearing thick glasses and going to all boys or all girls Catholic
Cindy Morgan: schools, but Oh, okay.
So, you know, yeah. It's like, yeah. Yeah. It was, it was a whole different, yeah. And by the time I got to college, I mean, I probably shouldn't say this, but here it is. I found out within a month I really didn't have to crack a book. I pretty much knew how to answer the question by the way it was asked. Uh, we had a very good curriculum in high school, and, uh, but I learned about everything.
I, I, I learned about, uh, social skills and I, and, and I got three jobs in my, uh, field while I was in school. I, I had two jobs in radio and one in television, and one of those radio jobs was a commercial job, which helped, as, you know, very important work gets work. So that helped me
Lou Mongello: get the next job. Yeah. So how do you go from, you know, growing up with the, with the thick glasses, with the tape on it and pocket protector to becoming Yeah.
Cindy Morgan: Clearly I got over it. Um, I got into communications and I, I wasn't a good speaker. I was a terrible speaker. I had a STEM work, but I was a good writer. And in the first, uh, the first thing I had to write in speech communication, speech communications class was, uh, the, the, in the professor said Just write a, uh, a speech on how to.
Make something. Just how to make something, anything and, and, and wise that I wa can I say that on Disney, uh, that I was, I wrote, I wrote a, a little speech on the assembly and disassembly of your average squirt gun. And I read it straight face and the, the, the students cracked up. They just thought it was the funniest thing they ever heard.
And she called me over and she said, you're good at this. You should do this. And that's all I needed to hear. So from that point, from being very shy and feeling restrained, I just, yeah, I just. Spring loaded and just went at everything that I was afraid of and which was first radio. And I remember the first time I was alive on the air, I couldn't feel my arms from the elbow, but they went numb, completely numb.
I was reading the news, I couldn't feel the thing. And then by the time I got to Chicago, I was like, I, I, I thought I was a real hotshot. I thought I knew everything. So, you know, it was, it was pretty.
Lou Mongello: Yeah. And so let's kind of go back to your, uh, your first kind of major role. You, uh, you take it now, let's go back.
First you take a stage name. Is it true that your stage name Morgan was from Morgan Lafaye, that from King Arthur?
Cindy Morgan: Well, yeah. You know, the, the, the thing is when I had those jobs in, in, in college, um, I was at two, I'm the air at two radio stations in DeKalb, Illinois at the same time. And, and for some. Uh, the, the, the commercial station said, well, you're going on the air tonight, but you have to have a different name.
We don't care what it is, like that's gonna fool everybody, or they were even paying attention. I, I, I don't know. So, so I, I and I, I, I had to make an instantaneous choice. And, and I remember reading that story when I was told thinking, how cool is that? Because the Morgan character that's being played out on the sci-fi channel is clearly different than the one I read.
Uh, I mean, and there's a, this, this is, this is an archetypical figure that comes up in myths and legends all over the place, and there are many different aspects of this character, but, but the way I read it when I was 12 was that this is a woman who made her own choices and created her own reality. And how cool was that for somebody who was so shy and such a nerd, someone who could create this illusionary, who could, who could do these things?
So, so I just, without thinking, said Morgan. So I was Morgan that. So on the way outta college, I sent out resumes with photos, and first I sent out Cindy Sikorski and, um, didn't hear anything back. And then Cindy Morgan went out shortly after and Cindy Morgan got the job. So Cindy Morgan went to work and that was it.
Lou Mongello: Yeah. So let's, let's kind of start with that first. Uh, really major. Motion picture roll because coming from your background, it, it sounds like Laci was, you know, a, a bit of a stretch. Um, what was the stretch
Cindy Morgan: interest? I'm reading the script going, well, this is so not me. I've got nothing to lose here, so I'll just go in and do what I want.
Well, they liked that apparently. And, and, and then, and it wasn't until I went to the final audition and I looked at the call sheet and I. I was the only one reading for that character that day and went, oh my God, these guys are taking this seriously. They lost their minds. What am I gonna do? And I walked out into the parking lot and I went, oh gee, you know, I, I, I, and, and I, all right, just pull it together.
Just, just focus on one thing. Just one thing. And I remember thinking, I'm just gonna focus on them who I'm reading with, and pray to God it's a man this time and make him. And that's all I did. And, and it w when I saw Doug Kenny sweating, uh, I knew I had the job
Lou Mongello: well, and it looked like one of those films that I, I could only imagine had to be a fun movie to make and look like, like some of the other comedies of the late seventies and early eighties.
I think things like Blazing Saddles, you know, it possibly couldn't even get made.
Cindy Morgan: No, no, no, no. Because, well, some of the, the, the political details are, are very, uh, specific to the time, uh, that they were made. So, so some of the jokes are specific to that point in time, whereas Cady Shack, we, I know you've heard probably the script was just kind of tossed aside and, uh, uh, you know, everybody I, you know, on both films, I've gotta tell you the truth.
I just stopped reading the script and, and the call sheet and what we were shooting that day, cuz it really didn't matter anymore. I would just show up for work and go. What now? What are we doing? And, okay, you got some sides, some, some pages cuz to look at, just to gimme a guideline, you know, just so I know what's going on today.
Because on Caddy Shack it was a, a damn free for all. And thank God I had already learned to run camera and sound and knew who belonged there and who didn't, and where the scene was and where the camera was following because, uh, I, I did get some acting classes really quickly, thank God. One of them was improvisation, which helped enormously because coming from broadcasting, I had to learn one thing that I didn't know how.
I didn't know how to listen. I know that sounds hard to believe and let the other person take the lead, and that was important. Um, Harvey Lembeck, my improv coach, said, Morgan, shut up. Stop it right there. Stop talking. You're going for the joke. Stop it. I go, yeah, but I'm funny. I don't wanna hear it. Stop talking.
And uh, he said, you're the straight set up the joke. And uh, he go, and that actually is, is kind of important. You wouldn't have, you know, I mean I hate to go way back, but you wouldn't have Abbott without Costello. And you need, there has to be the audience's point of view, which is the straight, pretty much in the, in the film and, and luckily, These guys were just so damn brilliant.
All I had to do was.
Lou Mongello: Well, I mean, you're, you, you're working with legends of comedy and the SNL grads mean Bill Murray and Chevy Chase. So yeah, you probably didn't have much of a choice as to just sort of let them just go and do their thing. Oh, I had choices.
Cindy Morgan: No, no, no, no, no. Let me back you up there for a second.
First of all, as soon as I knew who I was working with, I stopped watching SNL because I didn't wanna be intimidated on the set. I just wanted to go in and. Without fee, you know, without choking. I, I just wanted to do my job and, um, yeah, these guys are strong, very strong. Uh, but, but some of the best work I did when we, I was going head to head with, with a couple of 'em, and, and you know, it is what it is.
You know, when that camera's rolling, it's an even playing field, so, you know, anything goes.
Lou Mongello: Yeah. And obviously some of the scenes that you had, uh, with Chevy Chase are the ones that are most memorable. How much of that was, well, you were talking about scripted and just you and Chevy just going off and doing your thing.
Cindy Morgan: Whole bunches were Chevy doing his thing and me going, why am I here? That the, the, the piano song that you were gonna sing, I don't know if you've heard this already, but, but I was get we, we admit we are doing love saints, which are not romantic in a house in South Florida, that we've got the giant CLE lights on over there and it's like maybe a hundred degrees in the house plus humidity.
And after two days you're really tired and little, little. Fed up with the whole thing and I'm getting my makeup touched up cuz you know, it's, it's hot. And, and Harold Rams comes over and said, come over here and sit down. I went, what? You know why? And he goes, just, just come here and sit down and ask ch to sing you a love song.
I said, fine, you know, we're burning daylight, but fine. And I sat down and said, sing you a love song. And I look at him and he launches into the song. He snorts the salt, throws a tequila singing, and outta my, the corner of my right eye, I can see the red light on the camera. I went, Guys are filming this.
And I went, God, and I looked in front of me, I saw the tequila, and I, I took a shot and oh, it was tequila. Um, and, uh, and, and just, we just did the scene. I mean, I, you can tell that that reaction, you can't make up reaction like that. And, and then when we were doing the, the, the acupuncture scene, some of that was in the script, but a whole bunch of it wasn't.
Um, we had had a couple of conversations previous to this and they were. Passionate conversations. And then we went to shoot the scene and then he decided it would be a funny thing to dump a bottle of baby will in my back. But I, you know, if you look at my eyes, I, I'm thinking I'm not going anywhere. Peal, I'm sitting right here.
So do what you want, but I'm not leaving. And, uh, And there was the scene. And, and honestly, it was the best work we did. And I was, I'm so proud of it, I gotta tell you. Well, it's
Lou Mongello: still, you know, we'll talk about this later. It still sort of holds its own, uh, all these years later. But how does that gap from Cady Shack and beyond eventually lead to Tron, which comes out in
Cindy Morgan: a couple years?
Does it, does it actually all made sense there? There actually is a, a time while I was studying comedy improv before I went to Caddy Shack, um, with Harvey Lubeck, he had three classes of 24. And I was in the, in the, in the, the bottom class of 24, but in his master's class I was dating one of the guys in the master's class of 24.
And in that class they had John Ritter. Penny Marshall and Robin Williams. It was a good class and I was dating one of the guys from that class and he took me to lunch with some director, some for some cartoon he was doing. This is before Caddy Shack, I believe, and I'm eating lunch and I'm listening to them talk about this cartoon and it sounds great, but, you know, I was eating lunch, so I, I didn't pay, I really wasn't paying much attention and I didn't work for a long time after Caddy Shut.
I'm not really sure why, uh, but I was told I wouldn't work. Again, I don't know what the real, real reasons were, but. I had very few auditions for the next year, actually. Literally, I had more lunches with my agents than auditions, which another thing I wasn't real happy about, I changed that situation right quick.
Um, but, but suddenly I get this call to not come in and read for a casting person, but to come in and be put on tape with Jeff Bridges for the director, which is bypassing all the middle ground. Hmm. And I didn't know why. I just went, okay. So I came in to read, to be put on tape with Jeff Bridges and, and clearly a lot of tron, a lot of.
Dialogue outta context makes littler no, no sense, uh, to, to the average bystand or even now. You really have to be into it to understand what's going on. And, but I figured, okay, here're, I am, there's Jeff, he looks nice and there's a director and they got a camera. I know what to do. So I, I, I was on tape and um, that was Trump.
The lunch I was at with that guy I was dating was, he was originally set to play Tron. A year and a half, two years later, he was out. I was. And many years later, I said, was that Tron that we went to lunch? Where he goes, yes, and I've forgiven you and I'm never taking another after lunch again. Um, I said, I didn't know.
And then, you know, I did. I had no idea. So it was at that lunch, the director Steven Lisberger, saw me and had cast me. It was down to meeting and Deborah Harry, without thinking he had his vision in mind of who was gonna play your ring and.
Lou Mongello: So when you come in, I mean, look, this, this, nothing like a, a film like this had ever been done before?
No. How do they sort of explain this Probably very foreign concept to you?
Cindy Morgan: Foreign doesn't even foreign would make it easier, at least I'd have a reference point. Uh, there was nothing that had ever been done before. The first thing that was shown to me was, um, a computer animation. I don't know if you've ever taken an art 1 0 1 class, but the human figure's done with.
In, in, you know, to make the, the upper, upper arm, the lower arm, the upper leg, the lower, it was a series of ovals that looked like a puppet figure. And it said, we're going to animate like this. And I'm looking at that going, okay, you know, uh, uh, fine. You know, and, and then, you know, I'd worked green screen before because I'd done the weather, so I knew what that was.
But this was not green screen or blue screen. This was shot completely in black and white, which didn't matter. Either way, there's nothing there. Um, and, uh, we, I, you know, I read this, this story and again, I, I just took it for what it was. Just like when I worked in radio and, and I would get a commercial, or when I worked in television, I would get a commercial.
I just took it at face value. Walked in the studio, ready to go to work, and, and I would get a description from Lisberger, Steven Lisberger and he'd say, you know, you're running from here to there. And that's trying. And, and you know, and I'm working with good actors, Bruce Fox, Litner, Jeff Bridges, we got along great.
So I found the reality in their eyes, that's, that's where the reality was cuz there was nothing there. And also working with David Warner, uh, and Barnard Hughes, I mean, when, when David Warner told me I was gonna die, I. He's a very powerful actor, and Barnard is charming. So the only time I I took issue with it is, is when, well, I came in again, threw away the script.
It didn't matter. I, I, I came into work one day and, and Steven Lisberger said, okay, today you're on the solar sailor, you're on the game Sea. You're flying it. Morgan go. I went, all right, I gotta stop you right there. What I keep talking about, there's nothing here. I don't wanna be the one to say it, but there's nothing here.
This is a black w. The, the sounds. It was a sound stage, which is like an empty warehouse, painted black, solid black, uh, there's nothing there. There's a little black riser that with steps to it, and on it is a black banquet table with nothing on it. But black fell. What do you want me to do exactly? And he said, just do anything.
The Disney artist will paint it in. So I looked down at the black banquet table and said, I better see something cuz audience knows when you're lying. Um, and in my mind's eye I saw a soundboard, which I knew how to run. I, I, I, again, going back to the sound engineer. Experience. So in my mind I saw a soundboard, and this soundboard was moving this forward.
The only time we ran into a snag is when Steven Lisberger came over and said, all right, the three of you are looking in three different directions. What can we do about that? And I said, again, again, thank God for all the broadcast background. I said, can you just get a one of one of our grips to take a roll of tape?
They've all got tape, gaffer's tape, and just drag it. Uh, uh, on, on a rope across the floor. Well, at least, we'll, you know, something to focus on. We'll have the same, uh, point of focus, and we all, that's what we did. I mean, it was, it was pretty much rudimentary, but talk about doing something analog that, that exploded into something else.
It was, it was amazing that we, that we did it and it worked out as well as it did well.
Lou Mongello: you know, you, you really portray. The same but different characters. I kind of look at Tron as it, it's kinda like Wizard of Oz, you know? Yes. Dorothy was in her world and black and white. Exactly. This other world exists on the grid.
How do you approach these two characters? And they were sort of mirrors of one another, but they're also a little bit different as well.
Cindy Morgan: Um, I had to find something in me that could possibly in my world, ever do these things and then amplify it. Yori was extremely difficult because she wasn't a human. Um, Yori was, uh, and so I had to just reach into some my frame of reference and dig up the closest thing to it, which would be, if you look at the old movies, the someone who grew up in a desert island who really didn't have any interaction with the outside world, so didn't have social skills and, and, and, and didn't understand certain things.
So she had an innocence about her and yet she had part of Laura's memory, which, and I just had to make some quick choices cuz there was nothing there I'm that, that I could grip onto. Steven had a, Steven Lisberger had a really strong vision in his mind and, and it's a good thing he did cuz he held really hard to it.
And that's, I think, again, why I think it held up over 30 years. Uh, a lot of the dialogue I was agonizing over. I would say, Steven, I can't say this. My friends are coming to the movie. I can't say this. And, and, and, and, and he'd say, and I'd say, and I can't understand what I'm saying and, and how is anybody else gonna understand?
He goes, well, the movie's not for them. I said, well, they may not come to the movie, Stephen. And, and you don't win a fight about dialogue when you're arguing with the director, who's also the writer. So, so just forget that. So there's a line in the film that I choked on, and remember I told you, you can't lie to the audience.
There's a line I choked on and the audience cracks up every time they hear it. And now it's become my favorite line in the movie. You can't lie to the audience. It, it's that, it's the one, the one line I just said, I can't say this. And he said, say it anyway. And it ended up in the film, it's the line tron.
I knew there wasn't a circuit built that could hold you inside. I'm like, no, I can't say this. And the audience knows I'm choking on it. And they laugh because, and, and because I'm not committing to the line. I mean, I'm not making it my own. I'm, I'm fighting it. And they sense it, they know something's wrong and it it, and it gets 'em every time.
So it's pretty.
Lou Mongello: Well, yeah, I mean, again, too, you know, the movie was decades ahead of its time. I mean, you're talking about concepts that now we understand, but Sure. You know, back then you had no idea what you were talking about.
Cindy Morgan: No, of course. And the iPad three just came out yesterday. Yeah. At that point. I mean, I said I had some little at the time, uh, tech background and, and, and these were all, I'm not the he in, he, he made.
Concepts out of simple ideas, uh, technical ideas, they became concepts and elaborated them into almost a spiritual belief, which actually worked out in the film. A lot of people where Cady Shack is a lifestyle to a lot of people, Tron is more of a spiritual attachment. Uh, just by talking to the people I meet, I can, it really means a lot to them on a, on a much deeper level.
So it's, it's
Lou Mongello: interesting to see. Well, you know, you think about, and this, look, this is very early on, sort of in the beginning of this sci-fi rage. It's a few years. You know, they're making Star Wars. They think it's just gonna be sort of a western and and outta space. Do you kind of, right, a, as you're doing this, as you're making this film, do you realize at some point you're doing something special or, or that you're gonna be talking about it 30 years later?
Cindy Morgan: Um, while we were shooting the film, no, because if I was thinking thoughts like that, I'd be in a lot of trouble. Every day I have to really think about where I am and what I'm doing. But afterwards, when I was doing the press junket and I, and I did The Tonight Show, and, and I, I, I traveled around the country and was explaining it to people and I saw it in Time Magazine.
I did realize something, what special was going on, because the concept. Was so innovative, uh, it wouldn't have had the impact. It did. Tron didn't have the expected impact that people were hoping for at the time, and it actually, you know, people just, just pushed it to the side for the longest time, which, you know, you never know what p how it's gonna be received.
And, but I think the fact that Stephen Lier held strong to his ideals, Is one of the reasons it held up over time. Um, he, it, it, it wasn't a Mick movie. Uh, he really had a, a vision and he held to it. And then that's where, that's where the art of show business coming comes in. Having a real strong vision, um, and meaning it not just, it's, it's not just about ego.
It's, it's, it's really what he believed and it really transferred through. So I think that has a lot to.
Lou Mongello: Well, what about for you, you know, you were talking about shooting against this black background with, with gaffer tape. What's your reaction when you first see the film? Because I have to imagine there's no dailies because of the CCE CGI and hand animation
Cindy Morgan: dailies.
It took 'em eight or 10 months. They, they, this, this, this footage. I mean just, just, just this was labored. I mean, I mean, there were just layers and layers and layers of cells that were put together to make each. Of, of footage. Um, so many, so many months in, in, in, in post-production. Um, so when I finally saw it, I was, I was just, I didn't know what to think.
I, I mean, I wasn't anything like what I saw. I saw the Syd Me Graphics. I saw what it was going to look like, but I wasn't at all prepared for it. And, and, and, and again, I'm, I don't, I'm not a big fan of watching my work anyway, so I was, I was floored. I really just didn't know what to. And Carson asked me, what did you think when you saw it put together?
And all I could say was I was stunned. I didn't know. I didn't know. Um, and now when I say see it, I just love it. It's, it's beautiful. It's, it, it, and, and in the blueray it's gorgeous. And, and it, and it has a, a charm and a warmth and an impact that holds up. And I, I like it a lot.
Lou Mongello: Yeah. And you know, we were talking before about sort of, you know, now in 2012, You have a way to get direct and personal immediate reactions from fans.
Yes. You know, back in 1982, you don't have that sort of direct connection. You don't really know right off the bat nothing, what that response is gonna be.
Cindy Morgan: Nothing. Nothing. Uh, all I'm hearing is filtered through my agents, managers, and attorneys, and bless they're little hearts and souls. Uh, I shouldn't, a lot of the time it wasn't accurate, the feedback I was getting not even close.
I mean, so, so, um, I'm really glad. These two films did as well as they did. I mean, you gotta note that after, you know, first doing cache and not being allowed to work for a couple years, you're an attorney and my, and you wanna go where, where was my agent? Where was my attorney? Where was anybody? Um, there was nobody.
And then, and then, and then Tran not being as received as well as, as everyone had hope. 30 years later. You gotta know I'm smiling just a little bit, Lou. Of course. And just, just a little, I'm not saying much. I'm letting other people do my talking for me because I think that's more polite. But um, you gotta know I'm smiling.
Lou Mongello: Yeah. Well, you know, and one of the things that always fascinated me about the film, you know, we talked about how most of it was shot against this black background, but there was that sort of, Our side of the world stuff you guys actually shot over at Livermore Labs and for those that people don't know, it's a nuclear weapon National Security Lab.
How? That's right. You wonder how the hell did, how did we get there? How did Disney get to go, you know, to shoot, to shoot a film there?
Cindy Morgan: That's a damn good question. I suggest you ask somebody at Disney. I have no idea. I mean, I, I had somebody ask me a couple weeks ago, so honest to God, they said, so were you given a map of the place?
I said, listen to me carefully. They don't give you maps of this place. You go in, you get on an elevator and you go like 10 floors underground. There are no maps. You know, there's no online, you know? No. The fact that we were in there at all, I, you know, believe me, I understood how controlled the environment was just by the.
The nervousness of the people around me. I, I, I, I mean, I was picking up on it and, and, and to the point where, I don't know if you've heard the story, but at one point there was a, there was a, a, a blocked off area. There was a little taped off it, it, there was a raised piece of tape about six inches high.
It was, it was blocked off, but my makeup trailer was over there and I had to go there for something. So I'm like, these guys are busy. I don't know. They're gonna be tied up for another 20 minutes talking to each other. So I'm gonna go to the makeup trailer. So I make a shortcut across this tied up area, and everybody go stop.
And there's like the whole place out to freeze and I'm freezing. And then these texts come running out and, and it helped me, uh, back through and they get my shoes and they're decontaminated. I'm like, holy Christ. What? I just, excuse me. I Okay. Get that out. Just what I just said. I mean, just. What did I just step in?
Literally, not just figuratively. So it was, uh, yeah, it was, it was exactly what you say it was, and I have no idea how we got there or how, what we were doing there, but I, I know we would just, again, it was, we were taken to it and, and people were asking me these questions and these are. Good questions. Well, you know, did you get to meet people?
Did I, are you kidding? I mean, I knew they were there because when I stepped in the wrong place, they all flew out. But no, they don't chat you up. They don't give you a map. They don't, you know, you don't get a, somebody actually asked, did you get a tour? I said, are you kidding me? Did you not cheer to what I just told you?
You don't get a, there's this enough, this is not a place that gives tours. I, I have no idea why I was there, but, but it was great to have been there. And what a great group of people. They were very kind. They were very accommodating. Um, great place to work, but clearly a controlled environment.
Lou Mongello: Yeah. I just, I kind of picture in my mind how that conversation goes somewhere from Disney says, listen, we wanna make a Disney movie about a guy who goes into a video game, and we want to do it in this nuclear weapon security lab.
Cindy Morgan: again, you know, um, the, the, the, the, the cool thing about, and the, and the thing that, that causes a lot of sense of responsibility about the entertainment industry is that it does carry that much. Um, when, when Caddy, I'm, I'm still doing the book on, I'm trying to finish it, uh, on my app crash. The book on the making of Caddy Shack ca.
The, those guys at Warner Brothers were, well, Orion films at the time were given the keys to the state of Florida. Pretty much those, those water sequences were shot in three different counties, from what I can tell. Um, and we were just shooting. Aimlessly. The golf course was blown up. They gave these guys gasoline.
I've got photos of the gasoline truck, pumping it into the mining it. They mined the golf course with gasoline, and the people who owned the golf course were sent to a party. They watched, they said, no, you're not gonna blow up our golf course. And then they're watching the news at the party and they watched the golf course being blown up.
The next day they painted a green and they blew it up again. I've got photos of the tarp and the gasoline trucks and the three story fireball. This is not an avenue. So the fact that somebody said, this is Disney, we'd like to shoot their, well, let's see what we can work out. You know, well control your comings and going, so, so the entertainment industry is, it does wield a lot of power.
This is a media determined. For sure. So, um, it, but, but again, it also curious, I would hope in, in some cases at least a lot of responsibility because, um, people believe what they've seen here and you wanna make sure that it, it's at least accurate if not responsible.
Lou Mongello: Yeah. And you know, it, it's interesting, these two roles, a again, literally worlds apart, but I think the films nine day.
Yeah, yeah. But, but the films themselves are, are somewhat paralleled because they do. That tested time and they're being introduced to new generations and still being enjoyed by those of us who saw it in the theaters and, and for the most part, other than maybe the clothes, you can watch both of them with really no sense of them being dated per
Cindy Morgan: se.
I know what you're saying. It's, it's, it's a, it's astonishing, but the coolest thing ever. I mean, that, that they're holding up over time. Uh, uh, I, and what an, I mean, I've known better actors, more beautiful women, people who had better business context than I did, and how lucky for me to have been in both.
So very, very
Lou Mongello: lucky. So as time goes on, um, yeah. And, uh, and you hear about the making of Tron legacy. What's your sort of reaction initially when you hear.
Cindy Morgan: I wanted to see what they were gonna do. It was, it was, it was interesting and there were all kinds of opinions and camps and people with storylines because it's 30 years later picking up the story.
And, and, and there was an in between there, there was a game, a video game that was made that, you know, and, and, and, you know, in the sci-fi world. You know, you know, people keep saying, well, you're in the movie. You're not in the movie. You're dead. You're alive. What do you think? And I just keep smiling going, it's science fiction.
Anything's possible. I got time, I got all day. Remember what I said when I was on the Senate County Shack? I got all day. Take your time. So we'll see. I, I, uh, I, I, I, I thought it was a visual feast. Uh, it's interesting to see where the story's gonna be taken, but the important thing to always remember is these don't belong.
People, the fans who kept it alive for 30 years. Yeah. There's a whole new core market. When I, when I, when I go to appearances were, before my demographic was specifically 79% male. I know because I get the stats. Um, now I'm meeting young women, I'm talking about in their late tweens or early twenties who love the Jori character.
Mm-hmm. This is, this is astonishing and incredibly cool to me. Um, because as you say, a whole new generation of people who love
Lou Mongello: the. Yeah. And she's a strong woman in a science fiction film that 30 years later Right. Still sort of, you know, look, your role kind of transcends the film. It became, uh, very much sort of an iconic and sort of a cultural touchstone, especially for women
Cindy Morgan: I know and, and, and, and how.
Glad was I to have been part of that. As far as Lacy goes, a lot of guys, you know, go on and on about how Lacy walked around and it was clear when I wear the Feer shirt, she was, Lacy was pros. But let me tell you, uh, that was a political statement. Uh, uh, women had just literally or figuratively burned their bras.
So again, she was, I made strong choices for Lacey because Lacey had just, it was shot in 1979 and women had just fought for all these rights. So Lacey was, came from not. What can I get away with? I wanna get into trouble kind of a mentality. More like a strong, okay, I just came into my own, now I'm gonna take it all.
So that's who Lazy was. So, so hopefully again, a strong character and, and, and coming from a position of strength, no matter how it plays out, I think it's is always a good thing to do. I don't know, but that's just my opinion.
Lou Mongello: Yeah, and I think it, it's, you know, the, the characters and certainly look, the, the film itself was important.
You know, John Lasseter, who heads obviously Disney's animation, you know, said without Tron there would be no toy story. And I think, uh, at the strength of the characters had a lot to do with the, the success and the longevity of the film as
Cindy Morgan: well. Well, people don't fall in love with, um, graphics they fall in love with, so they, they, they find form an emotional attachment with the characters in the.
So, yeah, that was that. What, thank you for that. And that is kind of important.
Lou Mongello: And I can Rapid sports, right? And that emotional, you look, I, I saw that emotional attachment firsthand. I saw it at the expo, I saw it at MegaCon when, oh yeah. Guys and girls are, are lined up to, to meet you and talk. So other than maybe asking if you're single or if you like skiing, skiing or bull fighting, you know, the reference, what they say, what do they say when they come up?
Cindy Morgan: Uh, you know, it's, it's, it, I can see all kinds of thoughts. I mean, I'm reading all kinds of thoughts going across it. Well, mostly the, the, the young women who come up because they like Tron unabashedly are just, they really, really are so glad that there's a character that they can relate to that makes them feel empowered and strong, and that is such an.
To, to, to have to, to have played 30 years later to have people reacting to that. Uh, they feel empowered, they feel strong, and, and, and they, they're so happy. I mean, it's just, it's, it's, it's just a, a wonderful thing to see that I can't even, I can't even put into words they're the, the emotional response.
It's just, it's just wonderful to see and, and, and, and the guys who come up have a few more agendas. But, but, but again, it's, it's sort of cool to see, and again, makes me smile that they just, that. And it, it's, it's, it's, it is, it is a good feel. It it's a wonderful feeling. And I just, I just shake my head going, I, I must have done something right there.
So that's, this is pretty cool. Um, and, and very much enjoying it. Um, and it just, I just think that nothing changes over time. I mean, it just lets you know that nothing really changes. So that's why, that's why, I mean, I hate to compare it, you know, things that people fall in love with that came before Tron.
And Keach obviously will still continue to hold up over.
Lou Mongello: Yeah. And look, the, the Tron franchise looks as though it's gonna continue for years to come. There's an animated series, there's talk of another film. Yeah. Maybe Jori will finally make her reappearance,
Cindy Morgan: but Well, there's plenty of Jori live sites all over the darn
Lou Mongello: place.
I was gonna say, Jori has her own Oh, yeah. You know, cult fan following online. Yeah. Yes,
Cindy Morgan: she does. I, I, I. Again, um, this, this was a case. You wanna know how it happened, Lou? It had I actually been in Tron legacy, I don't think this phenomenon would've occurred, uh, because I would've just been part of the package, part of the franchise, but because Yuri was not included, suddenly a man from Sweden, uh, at, at an event I was at a year ago said it most clearly, most articulate, he said, you are part of our.
Where did you go? Um, pr pretty much that's the, the feeling a lot of people have. So had you already been included, it wouldn't have created, again, this emotional reaction so that people wouldn't have been asking about the, the depart where it was. And because people, a again, it's most polite to let other people do your speaking for you in a case like this.
And more effective and more and more people asked, and then websites started, and this was picked up by the press who were kind enough to, to reiterate the question and, and acknowledge it. So, It, it just gave it life. It breathed life into this phenomenon, which I'm still shaking my head about going. Cool.
And, and thank you. Uh, what am I gonna say? Thank you, um, for that. Yes. So I'm
Lou Mongello: very happy. Ab absence truly does make the heart grow fonder.
Cindy Morgan: Thank you. That is, that's the most beautiful way of saying it. Absence has made the harrow fonder. May I quote you,
Lou Mongello: Luke? Absolutely. I stole that line from someone, but feel free to attribute it
Cindy Morgan: to me.
Well, yeah, I, I'd say that really, uh, says it. Well, thank you. Yeah, that's, that's pretty much it.
Lou Mongello: But you out have a lot of other things going on too. And you alluded before, has the, from Catholic school to Cady Shack book, is it, is it coming soon? Is it something Rewrite, rewrite, rewrite, rewrite.
Cindy Morgan: And, and the because, oh, you're gonna love this.
You're an attorney, so get. I have the rights for the purposes of the first inception of the book, which is gonna be a coffee table book. The reason is I have the rights to 1700 behind the scenes images. Wow. For the purposes of the first book, it's 80% written. After I turned in an 80% draft, I went into rewrites.
So I, it's the, and my, my literary agents took the book and spread it out on their conference room. And rearranged it in another order. So I've got my version, their version, and flushing it out to do, that's three things at once and I've just gotta finish it. All I've gotta do is look at the pay picture and tell a story, just like I'm telling you today.
And, uh, there therein lies the challenge. So I'm, I'm trying to put this through line to the story. I, I'm going to, I have to pick a lane here. I had to get my, get a storyline so that it has continuity throughout. And then, and then I. Their ideas, my ideas and the storyline. And, and I asked my, my literary agent, who was also a good attorney, I said, am I gonna be sued?
And he goes, oh, yeah, just tell, he, he said, just tell the truth. I said, no problem. Gotcha. Because I was there. He, I, I, he, he said The interesting thing is, uh, because you were there, You have a First Amendment right to tell your story and, and, and, and, and, and, and I treat it this way. I mean, yeah, there was a lot going on in the set, as I'm sure you know, and I'm sure you've heard, but, but I, but I treat, I tried to tell the story in the same way that Cady Shack was presented.
Lighthearted. There are a couple of I issues I'll, I'll address directly. Um, You know, um, yeah, it was, it was the biggest party atmosphere ever. Yeah. We did a lot of things that were specific to 1979. Um, but I'm not glorifying a lot of the partying because within one month after the film, our favorite person on the film producer, Doug Kenny, died.
So everybody adored him. He's, he was everybody's favorite person, so, so I do address what went on. I do talk about it, but then I go on and tell it with a lighthearted. Okay. All that aside, this is what went on. Yes. Rodney was a nervous wreck. Yes. The two of us were having lunch, all you know, because they would just have lunch whenever the spirit moved them.
There would be food controlling out. We'd sit down. We would eat. Yes. We were up all night partying. Yeah. They took the golf cart keys away. Why we were driving around the green in the middle of the night because we didn't see a problem with that. And when they took the keys away, don't do that to somebody like me.
Cuz I learned how to hotwire them in five short minutes and we were still driving around in the golf course on the middle of the night. And yes, then the next day we would roll through because makeup, hair, and wardrobe were in the same building where we were staying. Like some kind of, it's actually now a dorm for F A U Florida, Atlanta University.
It was like a big dormitory. So we would just roll outta bed, run through makeup, hair, and wardrobe and just. Scooted back out under the set. Okay, now what? So yeah, that went on for six weeks then you bet. The longest and best party I ever went to. So all, all the other things aside, it was an astonishing, uh, opportunity and so, so amazing to have been there.
It was, it was pretty cool. And tram too. Um, loved it. I loved it. It was, it was a lot more serious than the Caddish. It wasn't the party carnival atmosphere, let me tell you that. We shot on the Disney. Um, and, uh, you know, and, and us having lunch in our tron costumes with all the studio suits around this is pretty interesting.
And they would show up down on the set to watch us work. And I'm like, guys, there's nothing going on here. I'm gonna run from here to there and say something, you know, so there's nothing to see here, but, okay. You know, hang out if you must. There's really, you know, it's not as, there really wasn't, it wasn't, uh, it.
Visually, and, and again, you would think in Caddy Shack, the, the grips and the crew were laughing cuz people say, were they laughing all the time? I've got photos of them falling asleep on the grip truck. They weren't paying any attention to us. They thought we were smart Alex, who were out of control. And we were so, so, you know, the fact that either of these films saw the light of day and, and did what they did is, is, uh, a, a darn miracle and happy and lucky to have been a.
Lou Mongello: Well, I can see why the, you know, as anxious as we are to see the book, I can see why it's being delayed, cuz you do have a lot of other stuff going on. I'm gonna see, no, I do have other
Cindy Morgan: things going on, and then there's a rewrite. I mean, I understand what they're saying. It would, they took it and put in another through line.
So I'm like, fine. I, I can integrate your concepts, but I still have to have a story. You know, you guys are, you know, this is not a testimonial. This actually is a story. So, so I'm working, I'm working on it, you know, and, and I, and I, and I had to reprint it. Oh. And then I had the, the, the, the joy of having my apps crash and my iPad.
Uh, you know, and then loaded into a pc and, and my graphic designer's a wonderful person, one of like one of my best friends on the planet, and she's so patient with me. She's like, okay, I got it. Just send it to me. And so she's, she's, she's a great graphic designer and she's re re she's and editor, she works at a publishing house in New York.
So this is, so I've got great people I'm working with again, so I I, I'm just lucky. I, I just really lucky to be working with these people, so yeah, it, it's gonna be done, but, uh, what a good time to get it out. Then during tran's 30th anniversary, I think, uh, that would be a good time for stars to collide.
What do you
Lou Mongello: think? Absolutely. Uh, I know a lot of us and, but, you know, people could also, you also, and the thing, this, this is what I love. You're very accessible. All people can find you. Uh, if they go to your website, it's cindy morgan.com. I'll put a link in the show notes. You do a lot of events too. You do D 23, you do the Megatons, and you can find out at other events you have coming up as
Cindy Morgan: well.
Sure. Um, yes. Yes. Uh, I'll be, I'll be at WonderCon next week and, and, uh, and, and ComicCon this summer. And Comic Con, have you seen Comic, you were talking about MegaCon. Have you seen
Lou Mongello: ComicCon? I I, this may be the year I finally take the plunge.
Cindy Morgan: Oh boy. This, yeah, I, I'm gonna talk to you after you've come.
It's an athletic event. You better be in good shape, stay hydrated and, uh, have your, have your wits about you cuz it's, it's, it's quite the event. But again, if someone is active in the industry and you. Let me just say, if you're active in the industry, this is the place to go. So, so, yeah, I, I'll, I'm gonna be a ComicCon this year.
I, I, I believe so. Uh, yeah. It's, it's something to see you, you gotta see it.
Lou Mongello: Believe it. Awesome. Well, hopefully people who are listening will head out to, uh, check you out there. They'll also check out to cindy-morgan.com. Sy listen. You know, you were fortunate enough to land, not one, but two roles of a lifetime.
Fans continue to enjoy your work. They line up to meet you, hopefully for years to come. I, I can't thank you enough. 30 years in the making this interview finally happens. I can't thank you enough for taking, taking the time to talk to
Cindy Morgan: me today. Well, Lou, you're, you're a sweetheart. And, and, and how charming for you to put it that way.
Thank you so much. And, uh, yeah, uh, yeah. Let's see. Let's see how this year shakes out. Then you'll have to do the follow up interview. That ought to be interesting. Absolutely. All right, well, thank you, Lou, for your time too. Thanks.