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article imageRidley Scott to direct follow-up to 'Blade Runner'

By Andrew Ardizzi     Aug 19, 2011 in Entertainment
Oscar-nominated director Ridley Scott has signed on to helm a follow-up to the 1982 science-fiction classic "Blade Runner."
The project reunites Scott with one of his seminal works, a movie widely considered to be one of the greatest science fiction films of all time. Blade Runner has won or been nominated for several awards and been subject to countless special edition DVD releases over the last 30 years since its theatrical debut.
"This is arguably the greatest science fiction movie ever made and we're not remaking it," Andrew Kosove, Alcon Entertainment co-founder and co-producer of the follow-up, said in a Reuters report. "It's a prequel or a sequel."
Alcon secured the rights to future Blade Runner sequels, prequels and other projects last March, although a decision has yet to be made on a screenwriter for the project. They knew from the beginning though that they wanted Scott to direct.
"I'm not saying we wouldn't have come up with a Plan B," Kosove told Reuters. "But the idea was always to go right to Ridley and that's exactly what we did."
Kosove believes having Scott attached to the film gives longtime fans a level of assurance and comfort as production moves forward, noting further that it demonstrates how serious Alcon is about building on the foundation the first Blade Runner movie provided.
Deadline reports Scott will also serve as a producer, joining Alcon co-founder Broderick Johnson, Bud Yorkin and Cynthia Sikes Yorkin as the project's producers.
The original film—set in Los Angeles in 2019—starred Harrison Ford as Rick Deckard, a police officer who is hired to hunt down "Replicants," genetically engineered human workers turned criminals who are forced to work on off-world colonies and are hunted down and "retired" if they return to earth. The film, set on an earth on the verge of environmental collapse, also featured co-stars Rutger Hauer, Daryl Hannah and Edward James Olmos.
Kosove said it'll be up to Scott whether Ford is invited to return, but he believes it's unlikely and didn't anticipate it happening, adding the story and casting would be new, CBC reports.
The movie, which grossed nearly $33-million at the box office in 1982, is a cult-classic that entertained the ever-present thematic narrative of what it means to be human, combined with delving into the impacts of technology on the environment and the influence of corporate power in a dystopian landscape.
Blade Runner was inducted into the U.S. National Film Registry in 1993 for being "culturally, historically or aesthetically significant." The Registry is intended to showcase the range and diversity of American film heritage and assure its preservation for future generations.
Filming for the new project is set to begin no earlier than 2013, with an expected 2014 release date.
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