Ridley Scott talks sequels: BLADE RUNNER and PROMETHEUS

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Ridley Scott

Director Ridley Scott has a lot on his plate at the moment. He’s currently out and about doing press rounds to promote The Martian, starring Matt Damon as an astronaut stranded on… Mars, which was very well received following its screening at the Toronto International Film Festival; and it’s a timely return to form for the legendary director because he’s also involved in an upcoming pair of very prominent projects – the sequels to Blade Runner and Prometheus.

Scott will direct the Prometheus sequel, Alien: Dawn of Justice Paradise Lost, but not the as-yet untitled Blade Runner sequel – where those duties will be handled by Denis Villeneuve. However he’s heavily involved in developing both projects and in a recent interview with Yahoo! Movies he spoke briefly about them both.

Firstly he was asked directly if he would have final cut on the Blade Runner sequel:

Oh, yeah. I mean, I always have final cut on everything, really. Partly because I’m very user-friendly. I always believe when you’re given X amount of money by someone to f**k around with and make a movie, you can’t draw lines in the sand. If I was an investor and you did that to me, I’d remove your ankles. So don’t do the auteur s**t. I respect the guy for giving the money and I respect the studio for saying, “Yeah, you want to do this, here we go.”

Not to be pedantic but that sounds like your investor/studio has the final cut privilege then, not you. Secondly, Blade Runner itself is infamously associated with studio meddling –  the original 1982 release featured a studio-mandated happy ending, which was a replacement for the initially-conceived, and far more highly-regarded, tears-in-the-rain ending that everyone knows from the 1992 director’s cut edition. I don’t think it’s as easy as a simplistic choice between “auteur s**t” and “yes man”.

Scott’s made no secret of his wish to make multiple Prometheus sequels, and was asked if he’s keen to do the same with Blade Runner:

Listen: Everyone else is, so why not? I love to work. The French say, “Work to live,” and I live to work. I’m very lucky to have a job that I adore. All my kids do the same thing. Some of it’s trying, but it’s like being in professional sport. It’s so competitive [that] you better keep bouncing the ball. You can’t rest.

Blade Runner HF

Ryan Gosling will be taking over the lead (of potentially the franchise) from a returning Harrison Ford in the sequel, but what about the perennial debate over whether or not Ford’s Rick Deckard was in fact a Replicant, which Ford himself has always denied:

Of course he’s a bloody Replicant! He’s going to have to admit it.

So when will the sequel be set?

It was 2017, so coming back it’ll be 2047, roughly. As young as you can play Ryan Gosling. He’s 34, but he looks 27 when he’s doing his push-ups. So maybe 2050.

One thing though, Replicants only live for four years – so how is Deckard still around?

I’m not going to tell you. You’ll have to see the story. It’ll all make sense.

Multiple models of the same Replicant? It’s really not that difficult if they’re manufactured, or maybe they learnt to breathe through their skin.

Prometheus David

Scott was then asked if Alien: Run Left Paradise Lost will be a straight sequel to Prometheus:

Of course. Have you ever read Paradise Lost, by Milton? In a funny kind of way, it’s an interesting basis for the darkness of [Prometheus 2]. Where the good-looking guy, who is evil as s**t, gets all the girls and goes to the nightclubs. The other guy, who is not quite as good-looking, is boring as hell and stays home. So in a funny kind of way, we used that as the basis for it, it’ll be Alien: Paradise Lost.

Which is very spooky, because it continues after the last one, where Elizabeth Shaw [Noomi Rapace] says, “I wanna go where they came from.” And you’ve got Michael Fassbender in two parts, so she’ll slowly put him back together. They will go to the world of the Engineer. That’s where they’re going to go. They will find out who would design such an awful bio-mechanoid creature, like a massive piece of bacteria.

We already know who, the Engineers. Or are we going to go all the way down the rabbit hole and find out the Engineers are themselves engineered?

I don’t know about you, but none of what he said fills me with much confidence in either project. Blade Runner is getting a sequel no one asked for because studios are mining properties with name recognition, and the best thing anyone can say about Prometheus is that it wasn’t that bad. How about you?

Last Updated: September 30, 2015

Trevor Davies

I like pie, I think.

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