January 23, 2017

Blade Runner prequels, sequels on the way?


By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: Sequels and prequels have become so routine, it’s strange to think of projects that succeeded as standalone stories that have not been picked apart and recycled in an effort to squeeze more money out of audiences.

There’s a short list of perfect films that have avoided being carbon copied over the years. Near the top of that chart would be Ridley Scott’s “Blade Runner,” which raised the bar for science-fiction moviemaking in 1982 and hasn’t had to be reimagined, repackaged, or repurposed for a broader audience.

Until now.

Alcon Entertainment reportedly is close to acquiring the rights to Scott’s film, according to EW.com, with the intention of creating “Blade Runner” prequels and sequels. While that sounds, there is a silver lining on the report. EW says Alcon would not receive permission to remake the original “Blade Runner” if they acquire franchise rights.

“We are honored and excited to be in business with [original producer] Bud Yorkin,” said Alcon co-founders and co-CEOs Broderick Johnson and Andrew Kosove. “This is a major acquisition for our company, and a personal favorite film for both of us. We recognize the responsibility we have to do justice to the memory of the original with any prequel or sequel we produce. We have long-term goals for the franchise, and are exploring multi-platform concepts, not just limiting ourselves to one medium only.”

Could that mean “Blade Runner” video games? A television series? I’m not saying the futuristic world of replicant-tracking blade runners doesn’t have an overwhelming amount of unexplored potential. I’m just hesitant anytime anyone dreams of messing with a movie the film community holds in such high regard.

What do you think? Do you want more “Blade Runner” stories? And in what direction would you like to see this story go?

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About Sean O'Connell

Sean O'Connell is a nationally recognized film critic. His reviews have been published in print ('The Washington Post,' 'USA Today') and online (AMC FilmCritic.com, MSN's Citysearch) since 1996. He's a weekly contributor to several national radio programs. He is a longstanding member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS), and the Southeastern Film Critics View all articles by Sean O'Connell Association (SEFCA).

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