Blade Runner (1982) has been for many a keen viewer the most influential and beloved movie of the science fiction genre and whilst the futuristic setting of 2019 now seems to be not so far set on the horizon, Deadline are currently reporting that veteran director Ridley Scott is set to return to the fictional world first envisioned by Philip K. Dick in the novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
No plot details, filming dates or writers have been confirmed whilst there is even no rumour as to whether the new movie will be a sequel, prequel or a completely new cautionary tale.
What is known is that Scott’s highly ambitious and closely guarded current project, Prometheus, is also rumoured to have started life as a direct prequel to his classic science fiction shocker Alien (1979), before apparently evolving on a grand scale to only partly encompass an explanation of the monstrous species.
Studios have previously attempted to revisit their classics with quite often limited critical acclaim with a precedent set that the high level of expectation is usually followed by a film that although watchable is still inferior to it’s esteemed predecessor.
A notable example being the George Lucas directed Star Wars prequels that failed to capture the freshness and originality of the original movies and ultimately achieved a general status of indifference or loathing amongst critics and fans alike.
And what of Blade Runner’s original cast?
It is highly unlikely that Harrison Ford would return to the pivotal role of futuristic detective Rick Deckard, especially given the actor’s much documented creative differences with Scott during the filming process whilst potentially too much time may have passed for Rutger Hauer to return in some form as the replicant killing machine, Roy Batty.
One suspects the desire to return to the world of Blade Runner is partly driven by commercial gain with producers Alcon Entertainment acquiring the rights to the original movie earlier this year and immediately hinting at the possibilities of future instalments.
My personal view is that a sequel or prequel should never be attempted.
That said, Scott may influence a script and conjure up a movie which could introduce a new set of characters whilst further exploring and complementing the fictional universe seen in the original film.
One thing is certain, what started out as an Alien prequel has quickly been rumoured to be next summer’s best kept secret.
So does the director envision a similar plan when revisiting the world of Blade Runner?