Bitten by the Blade Runner Bug?

After you have watched Blade Runner you may wonder about some of the details in the story. BR stands for Blade Runner, and DADoES is short for Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, the Phillip K. Dick novel on which Ridley Scott based this movie. The following comes from questions and answers as compiled by Murray Chapman who published them on rec.arts.movies and other Usenet groups sometime August 1995. Enjoy. :)

What are replicants?

The following definition appears in the BR script and the Marvel Comics adaptation of the film, and the Denver/Dallas sneak preview:

    android (an'droid) n, Gk. humanoid automation. more at robot./ 1. early version utilized for work too boring, dangerous or unpleasant for humans. 2. second generation bio-engineered. Electronic relay units and positronic brains. Used in space to explore inhospitable environments. 3. third generation synthogenetic. REPLICANT, constructed of skin/flesh culture. Selected enogenic transfer conversion. Capable of self perpetuating thought. Paraphysical abilities. Developed for emigration program. WEBSTER'S DICTIONARY New International (2012)

Replicants are manufactured organisms designed to carry out work too boring, dangerous, or distasteful for humans. The "NEXUS 6" replicants are nearly indistinguishable from humans. (In one draft of the script Bryant tells Deckard they did an autopsy on the replicant that was fried trying to break into the Tyrell Corp. and didn't even know it was a replicant until two hours into the procedure.)

Replicants presumably differ from humans in one important factor: they are lacking in empathy. In BR, the replicants' eyes glow (even those of an artificial owl), however Ridley Scott has stressed that this is merely a cinematic technique, and the glow can't be seen by the characters in the story, only by the audience.

The manufacturers noticed that replicants had eccentricities because they were emotionally immature. Rachael was a prototype replicant with experimental memory implants, designed to provide a cushion for her emotions. Consequently, she was unaware that she was a replicant.

NEXUS 6 replicants have an in-built fail-safe mechanism, namely a four year lifespan.

Who/What is <so-and-so>?

"BLADE RUNNER" GLOSSARY (from the 1982 Presskit)

BLADE RUNNER -- The nickname given to those police detectives who are specially trained in the use of the Voight-Kampff machine and whose specific function is to track down and eliminate any replicants that manage to escape into human society and attempt to pass as real human beings. The official name of the Blade Runner division is Rep-Detect.

REPLICANT -- A genetically engineered creature composed entirely of organic substance. Animal replicants (animoids) were developed first for use as pets and beasts of burden after most real animals became extinct. Later, humanoid replicants were created for military purposes and for the exploration and colonization of space. The Tyrell Corp. recently introduced the Nexus 6, the supreme replicant -- much stronger and faster than, and virtually indistinguishable from, real human beings. Earth law forbids replicants on the planet, except in the huge industrial complex where they are created. The law does not consider replicants human and therefore accords them no rights nor protection.

ESPER -- A high-density computer with a very powerful three-dimensional resolution capacity and a cryogenic cooling system. The police cars and Deckard's apartment contain small models which can be channeled into the large one at police headquarters. This big apparatus is a well-worn, retro-fitted part of the furniture. Among many functions, the Esper can analyze and enlarge photos, enabling investigators to search a room without being there.

[The January 1995 issue of NASA Tech Briefs includes a description of an Esper-like machine called Omniview.]

VOIGHT-KAMPFF MACHINE -- A very advanced form of lie detector that measures contractions of the iris muscle and the presence of invisible airborne particles emitted from the body. The bellows were designed for the latter function and give the machine the menacing air of a sinister insect. The VK is used primarily by blade runners to determine if a suspect is truly human by measuring the degree of his empathic response through carefully worded questions and statements.

SPINNER -- The generic term for all flying cars in use around the year 2020. Only specially authorized people and police are licensed to operate these remarkable vehicles, which are capable of street driving, vertical lift-off, hovering and high-speed cruising.

On Screen

DECKARD (Harrison Ford): Ex-Blade Runner.

DR. ELDON TYRELL (Joe Turkel): Owns the Tyrell Corp. and manufactures replicants. Extremely intelligent, designed the NEXUS 6 brain.

RACHAEL (Sean Young): Experimental NEXUS 6 replicant. Works for Tyrell and has his niece's memories.

ROY BATTY (Rutger Hauer): Leader of the renegade replicants. INCEPT DATE: 8 Jan, 2016 FUNCTION: Combat, Colonization Defense Prog PHYS: A MENT: A

PRIS (Daryl Hannah): Replicant, (Bryant: "Yer standard pleasure model") INCEPT DATE: 14 Feb, 2016 FUNCTION: Military/leisure PHYS: A MENT: B

ZHORA (Joanna Cassidy): Replicant. INCEPT DATE: 12 June, 2016 FUNCTION: Retrained (9 Feb, 2018) Polit. Homicide PHYS: A MENT: B

LEON KOWALSKI (Brion James): Replicant. INCEPT DATE: 10 April, 2017 FUNC: Combat/loader (Nuc. Fiss.) PHYS: A MENT: C

J.F. SEBASTIAN (William Sanderson): Genetic designer for the Tyrell Corporation. Still on Earth because of progeria, a premature geriatricism (Methuselah's Syndrome). A grand-master in chess (according to one script) but has defeated Tyrell only once.

H. BRYANT (M. Emmet Walsh): Inspector of the police force, Deckard's former boss.

GAFF (Edward James Olmos): A member of the police force. A sartorial dandy bucking for promotion; makes origami.

HOLDEN (Morgan Paull): Blade Runner, shot by Leon and put on life support.

Whose eye is it at the start of the movie?

The storyboard indicates that it is Holden's.

Why would the Tyrell building have ceiling fans in it?

Ceiling fans are very efficient, even in 2019.

When BR was shown as part of the "Los Angeles at the Los Angeles" film series in 1990 at the Los Angeles Theater, Ridley Scott was asked after the screening about the prevalence of fans in his work and their possible meaning. Without missing a beat, Scott replied: "Well, they keep you cool."

How did Leon smuggle his gun into room where Holden VK'd him? And how did he escape from the building, given that the whole incident was on videotape, and occurred high up in the Tyrell building?

The 110-story New York World Trade Center that made headlines when it was bombed in February 1993 had about 100,000 people inside at the time. According to various articles, the Tyrell pyramid is 6-7 times taller (700-stories). Since the top of the pyramid is apparently several times larger than the footprint of the WTC, the base must be enormously larger. Plus, it is surrounded by four buttresses, each of which must be greater in volume than the WTC. From this we can speculate Tyrell's pyramid must be larger than the WTC by a factor of 100 or more and house 10 million people. It should be easy to get lost in a crowd that size. Add in the fact there may be other people that look like Leon and you've got an impossible job. We also know that the Tyrell Corp. security is not perfect because, 1) Bryant tells Deckard one got fried trying to break in and the others GOT AWAY, and 2) Batty gets in and kills Tyrell.

What does the voice from the blimp say?

    "A new life awaits you in the Off-World colonies. The chance to begin again in a golden land of opportunity and adventure. New climate, recreational facilities . . . absolutely free. Use your new friend as a personal body servant or a tireless field hand--the custom tailored genetically engineered humanoid replicant designed especially for your needs. So come on America, let's put our team up there. . . "

Added for BRDC:

    "This announcement is brought to you by the Shimato Dominguez Corporation - helping America into the New World."

Why can't Tyrell afford a real owl?

The February 1981 screenplay was written as:

Deckard: "It's artificial?" Rachael: "Of course not."

Tyrell would probably keep a showpiece animoid replicant to impress visitors. Note also that in DADoES, the "Tyrell Corporation" lied to Deckard (that is, told him it was real) in an attempted bribe.

Who is the guy with his head on his arm in the photo from Leon's apartment?

Roy. In the Workprint, Deckard says: "Hello, Roy."

How did Rachael get away with killing Leon in public, when she was wanted dead by the police? The police arrived pretty soon after Deckard killed Zhora, so why didn't they swoop down when Rachael killed Leon?

Deckard kills Zhora in the midst of a crowded street. Leon picked a deserted alley to maul Deckard.

How can Tyrell tell Roy that "We made you to the best of our abilities," when he deliberately gave him a four year lifespan?

Tyrell probably means they couldn't risk making him any better because they can only control them for so long. This assumes Bryant is correct in saying the 4-year lifespan is intentionally built-in. Tyrell also says, "the light that burns twice as bright . . . " suggesting improved performance may be a trade-off with lifespan. Since Tyrell's goal is commerce, he may have turned a biological problem into a benefit by taking advantage of the 4-year lifespan -- planned obsolescence. When Sebastian says, "There's some of me in you," he might be referring to the intentional use of the genes responsible for Methuselah Syndrome.

Why are real animals so expensive if there are lots of birds living in Sebastian's building?

DADoES offers an explanation: some animals are much more rare than others and supposedly there were no more owls left. (Pigeons, on the other hand, always seem to be plentiful.)

Batty calls Deckard by name during the chase at the end. How did he know Deckard's name?

This is either a technical error in the film, or an indication that Batty knew Deckard, and Deckard doesn't know Batty. One idea is that Deckard (and possibly Rachael) were replicants, and part of the rebellion. They were caught entering the Tyrell building and, as an experiment, they were retrained as an ex-Blade Runner and a replicant who thinks she's a human. The experiment is to see if a replicant could turn on other replicants that he/she used to know. This explanation is a bit weak and far-fetched, as it relies on the Tyrell Corporation retraining Deckard but not changing his name. (Imagine if Roy had called him "Mr. Smith!"). This makes the Deckard/Zhora confrontation more interesting: she would have recognized him, and would be wondering if he was having a joke or not. When she realized that he was for real, she clobbered him. This could also give Bryant an excuse for getting the number of escaped replicants wrong. Different versions of the script have Deckard as a well-known Blade Runner, so in that case it would be reasonable for Batty to know about him. A likely explanation is that Leon was within earshot when Deckard showed his ID to a cop and gave his name; in an earlier script, Batty then had Leon go after Deckard for killing Zhora.

In Hampton Fancher's script dated 7 January 1980, Bryant tells Deckard that the replicants may have tapped into the ESPER computer and that it will take about a day to secure the system. Later, at Sebastian's apartment, Batty tells Pris and Mary that Leon and Zhora are dead and that the police have discovered he has been tapping into their computer. He informs them that he can't monitor what the police are doing anymore. This is what causes Pris to say, "Then we're stupid and we'll die," and why the replicants are expecting Deckard to come for them.

How did Deckard manage to haul himself onto the ceiling with two fingers, with two other dislocated fingers on the same hand?

He only holds on with his bad hand until he can get his other arm over the edge. Experienced rock climbers can achieve single-finger chin-ups. Whether or not they can do this in the rain while wearing a sodden trench- coat, with two dislocated fingers, a history of alcoholism, and being chased by a homicidal replicant is another matter. Postings from rec.climbing suggest that this kind of stunt is as much a matter of technique as strength.


Easily, he's a replicant.

How can Deckard be a replicant, when he's physically outmatched by Roy, Leon, Zhora, and Pris?

The videos that Bryant shows Deckard include a mental and physical rating for each of the replicants. In all cases, they are rated "A" physically. If Deckard was a replicant designed to think it was human, it would probably be made a "B" physical, which would correspond to average human strength. The fact that Deckard could slam shut a door that the replicant Rachael was trying to open hints that Rachael was a "C" physical.
Is Deckard a replicant?

This question causes the most debate among BR fans. The different versions of BR support this notion to differing degrees. One might argue that in the 1982 theatrical release, Deckard is not a replicant but in BRDC, he is.

There is no definitive answer: Ridley Scott himself has stated that, although he deliberately made the ending ambiguous, he also intentionally introduced enough evidence to support the notion, and (as far as he is concerned), Deckard is a replicant.

The "FOR" case:

  • Ridley Scott and Harrison Ford have stated that Deckard was meant to be a replicant. In Details magazine (US) October 1992 Ford says:
    • "Blade Runner was not one of my favorite films. I tangled with Ridley. The biggest problem was that at the end, he wanted the audience to find out that Deckard was a replicant. I fought that because I felt the audience needed somebody to cheer for."
  • The shooting script had a voice-over where Deckard says, "I knew it on the roof that night. We were brothers, Roy Batty and I!"
  • Gaff knew that Deckard dreamt of a unicorn, therefore Gaff knew what dreams that Deckard had been implanted with. (BRDC only)
  • Replicants have a penchant for photographs, because it gives them a tie to their non-existent past. Deckard's flat is packed with photos, and none of them are recent or in color. Despite her memories, Rachael needed a photo as an emotional cushion. Likewise, Deckard would need photos, despite his memory implants. Rachael plays the piano, and Deckard has a piano in his flat.
  • Gaff tells him "You've done a man's job, sir!" Early drafts of the script have him then add: "But are you sure you are man? It's hard to be sure who's who around here."
  • Only a replicant could survive the beatings that Deckard takes, and then struggle up the side of a building with two dislocated fingers.
  • Bryant's threat, "If you're not a cop, you're little people," might be an allusion to Deckard being created solely for police work.
  • Deckard's eyes glow (yellow-orange) when he tells Rachael that he wouldn't go after her, "but someone would." Deckard is standing behind Rachael, and he's out of focus.
  • Roy knew Deckard's name, yet he was never told it. Some speculate that Deckard might have been part of Roy's off-world rebellion, but was captured by the police and used to hunt down the others. In that case, Bryant is including Deckard among the five escaped replicants.
  • The police would not risk a human to hunt four powerful replicants, particularly since replicants were designed for such dangerous work. Of course Deckard would have to think he was human or he might not be willing to hunt down other replicants.
  • Gaff seems to follow Deckard everywhere -- he is at the scene of all the Replicant retirings almost immediately. Gaff is always with Deckard when the chief is around. This suggests that Gaff is the real BR, and that Deckard is only a tool Gaff uses for the dirty work.

The "AGAINST" case:

  • A major point of the film was to show Deckard (The Common Man) the value of life. "What's it like to live in fear?" If all the main characters are replicants, the contrast between humans and replicants is lost.
  • Rachael had an implanted unicorn dream and Deckard's reverie in BRDC was a result of having seen her implants. Gaff may have seen Rachael's implants at the same time Deckard did, perhaps while they were at Tyrell's.
  • Could you trust a replicant to kill other replicants? Why did the police trust Deckard?
  • Having Deckard as a replicant implies a conspiracy between the police and Tyrell.
  • Replicants were outlawed on Earth and it seems unlikely that a replicant would have an ex-wife.
  • If Deckard was a replicant designed to be a Blade Runner, why would they give him bad memories of the police force? Wouldn't it be more effective if he were loyal and happy about his work?
  • Deckard was not a replicant in DADoES, although he has another Blade Runner test him at one point just to be sure.

Batty's incept date of January 2016 means that he should have lived to January 2020. Why did he die in November 2019?

The margin of error on a replicant's lifespan is probably the same as that of any human with a fatal disease. It was suggested earlier that the short lifespan was a trade-off for increased performance. It is clear that Roy had exceeded even Tyrell's expectations, and so we could expect him to wear out that little bit before his due expiry date.


Earlier versions of the story were set in 2020, but this was changed when it was decided that it sounded too much like an eyesight test. The date was changed to 2019, but this inconsistency remained.

How did Gaff get Deckard's gun? Was he following them?

Deckard sits on the roof for a long time. In the Workprint, Deckard says he watched him die all night and that it was a slow, painful thing. Gaff may have followed Deckard's groundcar, or checked out the radio reports of Sebastian's death, walked around to piece things together and found Deckard's gun. It would also be in character if Gaff was simply lurking in the background hoping for Deckard to get himself killed.

Why does the spike in Batty's hand disappear when he catches Deckard?

The bottom of the frame is slightly cropped (even on the Criterion disc), which prevents us from seeing the nail. Nevertheless it is there and can be seen for a single frame on the Criterion disc at C-19 24493.

What is the significance of the unicorn?

When Deckard leaves his apartment with Rachael at the end of the film, she knocks over an origami unicorn. The unicorn is the last of a series of origami figures that Gaff uses to taunt Deckard. In Bryant's office when Deckard insists he's retired, Gaff folds a chicken: "You're afraid to do it." Later he makes a man with an erection: "You're attracted to her." And finally, the unicorn: "You're dreaming, you can run away with her, but she won't live" (he says basically the same thing to Deckard on the rooftop). One interpretation is that the unicorn was simply a message to Deckard to say "I know you've got Rachael, but I'll let her live." Another interpretation (based on the script) is that the unicorn is Gaff's gauntlet and he will hunt them both down.

A unicorn has long been the symbol of virginity and purity (being white), which ties in with Rachael's status. Legend states that only a virgin could capture a unicorn. Unicorns are extinct [note: unicorns are mythological, not extinct], and Gaff may think the same of Rachael, as she definitely has a limited lifespan.

A unicorn was used in Tennessee Williams' "The Glass Menagerie" to symbolize that the girl was "different to other horses." The horn on this unicorn represented her physical handicap, which prevented her from meeting people. When she finally did meet a man, they danced and knocked over the unicorn, breaking its horn off. "It's just like all the other horses now," she said, which symbolizes that she has overcome her shyness and lost her virginity.

The unicorn may also symbolize:

    - Rachael is (and always will be) a replicant among humans, and will be different, like a unicorn among horses, because of her termination date. (In the tacked-on ending, Deckard says that she doesn't have a termination date)

    - Rachael leaving and knocking over the unicorn symbolizes her escape from the Tyrell corporation, which only looked upon her as a replicant. Deckard fell in love with her as a human, and by doing so, she became human.

    - "The silver unicorn... is a made thing, a piece of human handiwork, beautiful and fragile and glittering, yet perceived as waste, thrown down and trodden upon, easily destroyed. Also, it is in the form of an animal, albeit a mythical one, and in the BR future, the beasts of the earth and fowls of the air are all be extinct, except in replicant form." [Source: Rebecca Warner in "Retrofitting Bladerunner"]

BRDC, however, includes a scene not in the original release. It is a dream sequence, showing Deckard's dream of a white unicorn. One can now argue Gaff knew that Deckard had dreamt of a unicorn. If Gaff knew what Deckard was dreaming, then we can assume that Deckard was a replicant himself, and Gaff knew he would be dreaming of a unicorn just the way Deckard knew about the spider outside Rachael's window.

"The Blade Cuts", Starburst (UK) no. 51, November 1982. Quoted without permission:

    Scott: ...did you see the version [of the script] with the unicorn?

    McKenzie: No...

    S: I think the idea of the unicorn was a terrific idea...

    M: The obvious inference is that Deckard is a replicant himself.

    S: Sure. To me it's entirely logical, particularly when you are doing a film noire, you may as well go right through with that theme, and the central character could in fact be what he is chasing...

    M: Did you actually shoot the sequence in the glade with the unicorn?

    S: Absolutely. It was cut into the picture, and I think it worked wonderfully. Deckard was sitting, playing the piano rather badly because he was drunk, and there's a moment where he gets absorbed and goes off a little at a tangent and we went into the shot of the unicorn plunging out of the forest. It's not subliminal, but it's a brief shot. Cut back to Deckard and there's absolutely no reaction to that, and he just carries on with the scene. That's where the whole idea of the character of Gaff with his origami figures -- the chicken and the little stick-figure man, so the origami figure of the unicorn tells you that Gaff has been there. One of the layers of the film has been talking about private thoughts and memories, so how would Gaff have known that a private thought of Deckard was of a unicorn? That's why Deckard shook his head like that [referring to Deckard nodding his head after picking up the paper unicorn]."

Scott goes on to talk about how he decided to make the photograph of the little girl with her mother come alive for a second, then later in the interview we have:

    M: Are you disappointed that the references to Deckard being a replicant are no longer there?

    S: The innuendo is still there. The French get it immediately! I think it's interesting that he could be.

Scott intended the unicorn scene to be in the 1982 theatrical release, but the producers vetoed the idea as "too arty."

What is the significance of the chess game?

The chess game between Tyrell and Sebastian uses the conclusion of a game played between Adolf Anderssen and Lionel Kieseritzky in London in 1851. It is considered one of the most brilliant games ever played, and is universally known as "The Immortal Game."

The Immortal Game, in algebraic notation, was as follows:

Anderssen - Kieseritzky (London 1851):

    1 e4 e5 2 f4 exf4 3 Bc4 Qh4+ 4 Kf1 b5 5 Bxb5 Nf6 6 Nf3 Qh6 7 d3 Nh5 8 Nh4 Qg5 9 Nf5 c6 10 Rg1 cxb5 11 g4 Nf6 12 h4 Qg6 13 h5 Qg5 14 Qf3 Ng8 15 Bxf4 Qf6 16 Nc3 Bc5 17 Nd5 Qxb2 18 Bd6 Qxa1+ 19 Ke2 Bxg1 20 e5 Na6 21 Nxg7+ Kd8 22 Qf6+ Nxf6 23 Be7 Checkmate.

The chess boards in the film are not arranged exactly as they would be in The Immortal Game, and Sebastian's board does not match Tyrell's.

The concept of immortality has obvious associations in the ensuing confrontation between Tyrell and Batty. On one level, the chess games represents the struggle of the replicants against the humans: the humans consider the replicants pawns, to be removed one by one. The individual replicants (pawns) are attempting to become immortal (a queen). At another level, the game between Tyrell and Sebastian represents Batty stalking Tyrell. Tyrell makes a fatal mistake in the chess game, and another fatal mistake trying to reason with Batty.

Religious/philosophical parallels:

The replicants are fallen angels (fallen from the heavens/outer space), with Roy as Lucifer.

Tyrell lives in a giant pyramid (like a Pharaoh), which looks like a cathedral inside, whereas Sebastian lives in an abandoned apartment with a "toilet bowl plunger" on his head.

Tyrell creates. He builds his creations imperfect. Once of his creations resents the in-built imperfection (since the creator had no reason apart from fear to inhibit his creations), and he returns to the creator to fix him. This parallels the baby spiders killing their mother.

Tyrell's huge bed, pedestaled and canopied, is modeled after the bed of Pope John Paul II.


    "Fiery the angels fell, Deep thunder roll'd around their shores, Burning with the fires of Orc."

This is a paraphrase of William Blake's "America: A Prophesy":

    "Fiery the angels rose, and as they rose deep thunder roll'd Around their shores: indignant burning with the fires of Orc."

When Roy finally confronts Tyrell, he calls him his "maker," and "the god of biomechanics." In the light of the parallels this film draws between the plight of the replicants and that of all human being -- four years against fourscore -- this scene has strange reverberations. If Roy can condemn his creator for determining his life span at four years, why can we not condemn our Creator (if we choose to believe in one) for placing us under a death sentence at birth. Can we sit in judgment of God?

Insofar as he creates artificial life and is killed by it, Tyrell is another Dr. Frankenstein. Tyrell and Frankenstein both are cruel towards their own creations, and yet it is these creations, not the creators, who are persecuted. We are sympathetic towards both Roy and Frankenstein's creature, as they are inherently benign creatures who become violent only when spurned by a paranoid society. Our creations tell us more about the ugliness of ourselves than they do about the created. The "Frankenstein" parallel is not perfect, however, as Dr. Frankenstein is not directly killed by his creation.

Roy puts a nail through his palm, a symbol of Christian crucifixion.

In John Milton's "Paradise Lost," Satan is, despite himself, the most attractive and interesting character. Roy is, of course, both Christ and Lucifer, but the important thing is that, almost despite ourselves, we are obliged to locate our sympathy where we do not want it to go. On a theological level, the "felix culpa," our "fortunate fall" through which we are redeemed, is occasioned by Satan, just as Deckard's "fortunate fall" is through Roy -- Roy not only saves him from plummeting, but in fact elevates him to the heavens -- a redeemed world.

When Batty dies, he is released from torment as he releases the dove. (The laserdisc notes say that they couldn't get the dove to fly off into the rain.)

After Roy's death Deckard muses: "All he'd wanted were the same answers the rest of us want. Where do I come from? Where am I going? How long have I got. All I could do was sit there and watch him die." According to an essay in "Retrofitting Blade Runner", these three questions are the title of a painting by Gauguin during one of his more suicidal phases: "Where do we come from? What are we? Where are we going?"

What makes Blade Runner popular/special? Trivia:

Deckard only retires two replicants, both women.

All replicants are referred to by first name, all humans by last name.

Pris's incept date is Valentine's Day.

The lamp on Bryant's desk has a translucent shade depicting a hunter standing beside a fallen cape buffalo.

Each replicant's serial number summarizes their characteristics: for example, Leon's "N6MAC41717" stands for Nexus-6, Male, A-Physical, C-Mental, and incept date 4/17/17.

Leon's eyes glow faintly for a moment during the VK test but this is very hard to discern. The major characters have either green or blue eyes.

Gaff's origami taunts Deckard: when Deckard tries to leave Bryant's office without taking the job, Gaff makes a chicken. Gaff makes a man with a huge erection to tease Deckard about either being attracted to Rachael, or getting so involved/excited by the job (when he didn't want it in the first place). Gaff might have felt that Deckard searching Leon's room was just "jacking off." The origami unicorn is a reminder to Deckard of either Rachael's or his own mortality.

During the scene where Deckard VK's Rachael, there is a dissolve to indicate the passage of time. During the dissolve, Deckard can be heard mentioning "orange body, green legs," the same description of the spider that Rachael later describes. This may have been added as a form of pseudo-subliminal message, so that later when Rachael mentions the same thing, the viewer's memory is sparked in a subtle way. This is much the same as when Deckard is travelling through the tunnel and "incorrectly" remembers what Leon said just before shooting Holden.

The newspaper which lines the drawers in Leon's apartment is the same edition as the one that Deckard reads at the beginning of the movie.

The Japanese characters for "police" ("kei-satu") are written on the police spinner.

The music sitting on Deckard's piano is:

    Concerto in D major for Guitar, Strings and Continuo (Orig.Concerto con 2 violini, leuto e basso, RV 93) by Antonio Vivaldi Second movement : Largo heading : Largo (Streicher "Sordine")

The notes of the guitar part are the German or English edition from:

    Publisher : Karl Scheit GKM Nr.41 arranging by Karl Scheit (c) Copyright 1978 by Ludwig Doblinger (Bernhard Herzmansky) K.G., Wien - Muenchen D.15.896a

Eye symbolism is rampant:

     - The eye in the opening shots

    - Replicants' eyes glow

    - Tyrell has huge glasses to make his eyes bigger

    - glasses like Tyrell's were used in DADoES for fallout protection

    - Eyes are used in the VK test

    - Chew's Eye World where Chew and Leon both handle the eyes

    - "Eyes, eyes... I do only eyes"

    - "Chew, if only you could see what I've seen with your eyes!"

    - Leon tries to stick his fingers in Deckard's eyes

    - The lights behind Pris when she enters Sebastian's apartment

    - Batty plays with the glass-encased eyes in Sebastian's apartment

    - Batty sticks his thumbs in Tyrell's eyes

    - Pris rolls her eyes to show only the whites

    - The owl's large eyes are shown frequently

    - surrounding the top of the Bradbury building are large, bright blue, lighted half-orbs, which resemble eyes.

    - "I've SEEN things you people wouldn't believe"

    - "Not an easy man to SEE, I guess"

    - "I wanted to SEE you"

    - "He wouldn't SEE me"

Rachael's picture comes to life momentarily, and the soundtrack has the sound of children playing.

Rachael's hairstyle: as a replicant, it is perfect, rigid, machine like, and cold. As a human, it's soft, curly, and messed up.

The theatre across from Sebastian's apartment shows films by Ridley Scott's wife.

Roy Batty's soliloquy was ad-libbed by Rutger Hauer.

Blade Runner won the Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation in 1983 (beating out E.T.). In a poll of members of the 1992 World Science Fiction Convention, Blade Runner was named as the third most favorite SF film of all time (behind Star Wars and 2001: A Space Odyssey).

I don't like the voice-overs/ending.

Ridley Scott made BR in a style called "film noir." Film noir is a "hardboiled detective" style of story-telling. Perhaps the most famous example is the Humphrey Bogart movie The Maltese Falcon (directed by John Huston). A trademark of film noir is the voice-overs by the detective, explaining what he is thinking/doing at the time.

Ridley Scott filmed BR without the voice-overs, but due to its poor reception at a sneak preview, the studio insisted that the voice-overs be added. Ridley Scott said in an interview on American television that in film noir, voice-overs sometimes work, and sometimes don't, and they didn't work in BR.

"(A)n extensive voice-over was added to help people relate to Harrison Ford's character and make following the plot easier. (A)fter a draft by novelist-screenwriter Darryl Ponicsan was discarded, a TV veteran named Roland Kibbee got the job. As finally written, the voice-over met with universal scorn from the filmmakers, mostly for what Scott characterized as its 'Irving the Explainer' quality.... It sounded so tinny and ersatz that, in a curious bit of film folklore, many members of the team believe to this day that Harrison Ford, consciously or not, did an uninspired reading of it in the hopes it wouldn't be used. And when co-writers Fancher and Peoples, now friends, saw it together, they were so afraid the other had written it that they refrained from any negative comments until months later." [Source: Los Angeles Times Magazine, September 13, 1992.]

The ending of the film was also changed by the studio. Scott wanted to end the film with Deckard and Rachael getting into the elevator, but the studio decided that the film needed a happier, less ambiguous ending. The aerial shots used in the 1982 theatrical release were outtakes from Stanley Kubrick's The Shining (which, coincidentally, featured Joe Turkel).

In September 1992, Warner Bros. released "The Director's Cut" of Blade Runner (BRDC), which eliminated the voice-overs and the happy ending.

Problems in Blade Runner


Why did Holden need to VK Leon, if the police knew what he looked like? This test is more crucial in the novel, where it is intimated that there are humans who have actually been replaced by look-alike replicants. Replicants, however, can readily change their appearances and aren't easily recognized from photographs, e.g., Zhora's tattoo, and Pris' raccoon makeup. In the July 1980 screenplay, Deckard muses, "They could change their appearances but not their future." In the December 1980 screenplay, Deckard says Zhora's "black hair is a wig which now hangs on the wall next to the shower. She didn't look like Nexus designated Zhora to begin with, but even less now."

Bryant tells Deckard that there were six replicants, three male, three female. Obviously, Roy and Leon are two of the males, and Pris and Zhora are two of the females. Bryant also says that "one of them got fried trying to get into the Tyrell building," but doesn't specify the sex. That leaves one replicant, either male or female. It has been hypothesized that Deckard was the sixth replicant, but there is ample evidence that this is not the case. In an earlier version of the script "Mary" was the fifth replicant, and "Hodge" was the sixth. Bryant's line in that script got past the screenwriter unnoticed. It was recorded correctly in the Workprint as "two got fried" but botched again on the release print.

Why is it so difficult to tell a replicant from a human, when replicants can put their hands in boiling/freezing liquids without damage? Surely a tissue sample would suffice? Perhaps, but Holden couldn't even get a straight answer from Leon, much less a tissue sample.

How did word of Rachael's escape get out so quickly, and how could Tyrell tell that she had gone for good? Remember that Deckard called Rachael at home while he was still at the nightclub. It could not have been more than a couple hours before he gave chase to Zhora. (How long could she "take the pleasures from the serpent"?) Was that enough time for Rachael to run away then for Tyrell to call the police and have Bryant put Deckard onto her? Another explanation is that Tyrell's "experiment" was voided when Rachael discovered she was a replicant; Tyrell simply used this opportunity to dispose of her.

How did Roy get into Tyrell's office so easily? Did Tyrell trust Sebastian enough to give him the option of bringing anyone/anything up in the lift? Tyrell was unaware there was anyone in the lift with Sebastian until he said "I brought a friend." In earlier scripts, Sebastian and Chew both held the highest security clearance.

In an early version of the script, Tyrell was a replicant, and Roy picks up on this because of a key both Sebastian and Tyrell are wearing. In that version, the real Tyrell was in a "cryocrypt," for sketches of which see "The Blade Runner Sketchbook." After Roy kills the replicant Tyrell, he makes Sebastian show him the crypt where the real Tyrell lies dead because of a mistake Sebastian had made.


Norwegian subtitles translate "Sushi. That's what my ex-wife called me. Cold Fish." into "Sushi, my wife, used to call me a cold fish."

Swedish subtitles spell Roy's name "Beatty", translate Deckard's license number from 260354 to 26354, and (in BRDC) "C-beams" to "seabeams."

Norwegian subtitles translate Deckard's license number from 260354 to 26354.

The theatrical version dubbed into German translates "hardcopy" (from the Esper machine) into "solid copy," but in BRDC, it is "printout."

Italian-dubbed versions translate "C-Beams" to "B-Beams" and Tyrell's line " . . . and you have burned so very, very brightly . . . " to " . . . and you have burned your candle from both ends . . . . " Leon's "Nothing's worse than having an itch you can never scratch" becomes "Nothing's worse than living in terror." Gaff's " . . . but then again, who does?" becomes "If this can be called living . . . "

Both the 1982 release and BRDC are incorrectly dubbed into Spanish: they translate the "shoulder of Orion" to the "shores of Orion."

The original Danish video release had "off-world" translated as "subterranean."

The Japanese neon sign for "gorufu you-hin" (golf equipment) has the wrong character for "you;" it is missing a verticle stroke, creating "getu" (moon). The last thing the Sushi Master says is "wakatte kudasai yo" ("please understand my position"), an odd thing to say at that time.

Gaff and Deckard fly past the same rooftop twice on their way to see Bryant.

The snake tattoo on Zhora only appears after the Esper machine has stopped zooming, and when it produces a hard copy, Zhora's face is at a different angle to that on the screen.

When the Cambodian woman puts the snake scale into the electron microscope, she doesn't take it out of the plastic bag. We should be looking at a picture of a plastic bag. The serial number that she gives Deckard is not identical to the one in the image. Additionally, the image is not a snake scale, but a female marijuana leaf (see Scharf's book in section 7).

When Deckard goes to Ben Hassan's (the snake dealer), their lip movements do not match the dialog. Although correct in the Denver/Dallas Sneak, the take wasn't deemed satisfactory for other reasons. The mismatch was a compromise.

When Zhora goes crashing through the plate-glass windows, the stunt double looks nothing like the actress, her wounds disappear and reappear, and she is wearing flat-heeled boots rather than the high-heeled ones she put on in her dressing room. The sounds of the bullets hitting her body doesn't correspond to when she is visibly hit. Also, you can see her holding the trigger-ball and tube for the bloodbags she is carrying.

In all versions of the film, events occur in the following sequence: Deckard kills Zhora and then buys a bottle of Tsing Tao. Gaff takes him to Bryant. Deckard then spots Rachael and tries to catch her but gets beaten up by Leon. When the script included Mary (another replicant), the sequence ran as follows: Deckard kills Zhora and then spots Rachael looking on. He chases Rachael, only to be beaten up by Leon. After Rachael kills Leon, Deckard buys a bottle of Tsing Tao and has to warn her with a glance when Gaff approaches. Gaff takes him to Bryant, who tells him that there were "four to go" (Roy, Pris, Mary, and Rachael). When they eliminated Mary from the script, they had a problem: Bryant should say that there were "three to go" (Roy, Pris, and Rachael). Instead of reshooting this scene, they moved it and the scene of Deckard buying Tsing Tao ahead of Leon's death, so that the "four to go" would be Roy, Pris, Leon (not Mary), and Rachael. They nearly got away with this, but are now a few problems: 1) when Deckard is talking to Bryant, he shows wounds from his fight with Leon, although he hasn't had the fight yet; and 2) since he now buys his bottle before he fights Leon, it should be there while he's chasing Rachael and fighting Leon (it's not). The bottle mysteriously reappears when he gets back to his apartment. This problem is purely the result of Bryant telling Deckard, "I've got four skin jobs walking the streets," but only accounting for one of the remaining two.

Support cables are visible whenever you see a closeup of a spinner floating above a city street. The cable is most visible when Gaff departs with Deckard in the beginning of the movie. There is a close-up of the spinner rising in the rain and the line is very visible where it connects to a fender. Later when a cop floats down to Deckard sitting in his car and asks his business, you can spot the cable if you look closely.

A gunshot wound is visible before Pris is shot.

In the Deckard/Batty confrontation, after Deckard has been given his gun back and stalks off, you can spot the shadows of the cameraman, gaffer, and the camera on the wall.

When Batty is holding onto Deckard's arm, Deckard's shirt is untucked. When he is thrown down, the shirt is tucked in.

BLADE RUNNER Production Notes (excerpts from the 1982 Presskit)

Actors Rutger Hauer, Brion James, and James Hong worked for two days amid icicles at US Growers Cold Storage, Inc.

The "Blade Runner" company also filmed at two of L.A.'s most beautiful architectural landmarks. The front of the Ennis Brown house in the Los Feliz area was designed in 1924 by Frank Lloyd Wright in a Mayan block motif. The building, the most monumental of Wright's western experimental work, is seen in the film as the entrance to Harrison Ford's apartment building, a huge condominium complex, hundreds of stories high.

The Bradbury Building, built in 1893 and recently threatened with architectural corruption by municipal safety modifications, was preserved on film by "Blade Runner." In one scene, Ford traces Hauer to the ornate edifice for the final showdown. In another, industrial designer J. F. Sebastian (William Sanderson) discovers street waif Pris (Daryl Hannah) and takes her into his apartment.

Bradbury Building - 304 S. Broadway (Southeast corner of 3rd & Broadway). You usually can't get inside and it's hard to see the iron work from the entry doorways. A couple of years ago they had it open around noon on Saturdays. Also, the Los Angeles Conservancy sponsors walking tours and features the Bradbury on its Pershing Square tour. Call (213) 623-CITY for information.

Million Dollar Theater - 307 S. Broadway (Southwest corner of 3rd & Broadway). You can see this theater and its big marquee in the scene where Pris runs from Sebastian and breaks his car window. It's open to the public and shows films in Spanish or with Spanish subtitles.

The tunnel that Deckard drives through is either 3rd or 2nd street, a block or two west of the Bradbury building.

The Ennis-Brown House - 2655 Glendower Ave (off Western Ave above Los Feliz Blvd). Tours are conducted the second Saturday of each odd month (Jan, Mar, May, July, Sep, Nov). Info/reservations (213) 660-0607/668-0234.

Other locations included the downtown: Pan Am Building, where Deckard and Gaff search Leon's hotel room for clues, and the old Los Angeles Union Station (Bryant's office).

Deckard drives through a landmark tunnel featured in many Hollywood films.

Sebastian's apartment is full of bastardised creatures, part man, part machine, and part animal. There is a stuffed unicorn on Sebastian's work table (screen right, as the mice scurry over scattered paraphernalia while Sebastian sleeps).

Each character is associated with an animal:

    Leon = Turtle

    Roy = Wolf, Dove

    Zhora = Snake

    Rachael = Spider

    Tyrell = Owl

    Sebastian = Mouse

    Pris = Raccoon

    Deckard = Sushi (raw fish), unicorn

"Ethyl methanesulfonate as an alkylating agent" is a mutagen, and the subsequent debate between Batty and Tyrell correctly explores the problems associated with changing a cell's DNA.

When Gaff picks up Deckard, the launch sequence on the computer is the same one used in Scott's Alien, where the escape pod separates from the Mother ship. The black-and-white display of the VK machine was also used as a wall display in Alien. When Deckard enters his apartment at the end, the background hum is the same distinctive hum as in parts of Alien. The cigarettes smoke in BR are the same yellow color as the ones in Alien.

Notice that both Alien and BR have "artificial persons," and there is ambiguity as to who is/was a real human. The difference is that Ash is a robot with mechanical insides.

E.T.A. Hoffmann, a 19th century German writer, wrote "The Automata," which featured a man who fell in love with a female piano-playing automaton. When he discovers that she is an automaton, he goes insane. He regains his sanity, only to fall from a tall building calling "beautiful eyes." It was her eyes that convinced him that she must be an automaton.

Behind the scenes:

Sean Young:

    "A lot of people like the scene where I say, 'kiss me, kiss me' to Harrison. Personally, it's not one of my favorites. How would you like to have somebody grab you and throw you around a room? I had bruises all over me. And Harrison's beard was all grown out, and scratched my face. The whole scene just reminded me of a woman getting beaten up. I didn't see how my character, Rachel, could go up to his room after that."

    "It was really a rough day. Harrison tends to play love scenes either angry or funny. It isn't just acting, you know. Somebody really is throwing you against a wall while you're supposed to be telling them you love them. I was a wreck. I had three or four weeks off after that scene."

    "The scene I liked the best was where Harrison tells me I'm a 'replicant' a robot with emotions and I cry right on cue. Yes, they're real tears." - The Washington Post, August 14, 1982

Harrison Ford:

    He is also willing to admit that he is not fond of Blade Runner, Ridley Scott's futuristic cult favorite. "I played a detective who did no detecting," he says. "There was nothing for me to do but stand around and give some vain attempt to give some focus to Ridley's sets. I think some - a lot - of people enjoy it, and that's their perogative." - The Boston Globe, July 14, 1991

What companies/products have their logos appearing in BR?

ANACO, Atari, Atriton, Bell, Budweiser, Bulova, Citizen, Coca-Cola, Cuisine Art, Dentyne, Hilton, Jovan, JVC, Koss, Lark, Marlboro, Million Dollar Discount, Mon Hart, Pan Am, Polaroid, RCA, Remy, Schiltz, Shakey's, Toshiba, Star Jewelers, TDK, The Million Dollar Movie, TWA, Wakamoto.

What is this "Blade Runner Curse"?

Someone once noticed that a number of the companies whose logos appeared in BR had financial difficulties after the film was released. Atari had 70% of the home console market in 1982 but faced losses of over $2 million in the first quarter of 1991. Bell lost its monopoly in 1982. Pan-Am filed for bankruptcy protection in 1991. Soon after Blade Runner was released, Coca-Cola released their "new formula," resulting in losses of millions of dollars. It is interesting to note that since then, the Coca-Cola company has seen the biggest growth of any American company in history. Cuisinart filed for bankruptcy protection in July 1989.

Is there going to be a sequel to Blade Runner?

In "Newsday," October 6, 1992, Scott is quoted as saying: "I'd really like to do that, I think 'Blade Runner' made some very interesting suggestions to the origins of Harrison Ford's character, addressing the idea of immortality. I think it would be a very intelligent sequel."

In "Screen International," May 5-11:

"A slew of big-budget productions - likely to include Ridley Scott's sequel to Blade Runner - are heading for Shepperton Studios (UK), which is shaping up to become the leading special effects studio outside the US."

"Speaking from Grenada, Scott confirmed that the sequel to Blade Runner will probably be shot at the studio, but he gave no starting date."

"The prospect of a Blade Runner sequel has been bruited around for years - although without Scott's active involvement. Scott, who shot Alien at Shepperton, confirmed that he is planning to make a sci-fi film 'in the near future that I would shoot almost entirely' at the London studios."

Is there a Blade Runner computer game?

Yes. The official BR computer game was released for the Commodore 64 around 1982-1983. It featured the player as Deckard, tracking down the replicants on an electronic map. Upon locating one, you had to chase them down a crowded street and shoot them. The music in the game is a Commodore 64 rendition of the End Title track by Vangelis. Copyright problems with the name "Blade Runner" resulted in CRL (the game's producers) obtaining the rights to the music, thus allowing them to refer to "A game based on the music of Vangelis' 'Blade Runner.'"

Where can I get a gun like Deckards?

The gun that Deckard uses is an Austrian Steyr/Mannlicher bolt-action rifle with the stock and barrel removed, leaving just the receiver. A pistol-grip was added for effect. The Steyr rifle action has a very distinctive bolt-handle and trigger-guard; in fact, the particular receiver used possessed the target-style set trigger system (two triggers).

What are the different versions of Blade Runner?

- US Denver/Dallas Sneak Preview/Workprint (1982) - US San Diego Sneak Preview (1982) - US Theatrical Release (1982) - European Theatrical Release (1982) - The Director's Cut (BRDC) (1992)

Hampton Fancher did several drafts of the screenplay. These drafts concluded with Deckard taking Rachael out of the city, letting her see nature for the first time, and then, because she doesn't want to be caught by the police, shooting her in the snow. David Peoples was brought in to polish the script, and Ridley Scott asked him to include more detective work. Peoples worked on the humanity of Deckard's adversaries. His daughter mentioned the biological term "replicate", which led to "replicant." Peoples also told Scott that the screenplay was virtually perfect before he worked on it. [Source: Los Angeles Times Magazine, September 13, 1992: p. 20.]

The rumours of a three-hour version of BR are just that: rumours. No version of the script could be made into a film of that length. Mary was cut before any of her scenes were filmed.

Contracts under the terms of the Hollywood Director's Guild usually allow 6 weeks for the director to assemble a cut of the film without studio interference as he would like it to be seen. This "director's cut" is fully edited and has a synchhronized sound track. This cut is usually not color corrected or density corrected and may not even have the final music and effects tracks. In more recent times the term "Director's Cut" has taken on a popular meaning that implies a polished final cut of the film that the director has complete artistic control over. BRDC fits the latter definition. The now legendary "workprint" seen at the Nuart and Castro theaters, fits the former.

US Denver/Dallas Sneak Preview/Workprint--70mm (113 min):

    - Webster's 2012 definition of a replicant used in lieu of opening crawl

    - voiceovers deleted except at Batty's death

    - Bryant says TWO replicants were fried running through an electric field

    - conversation between snake-maker and Deckard is different and matches their lips

    - includes shot of nearly nude dancers in hockey masks outside Taffey's bar

    - Batty says, "I want more life, father."

    - Pris lifts Deckard up by his nostrils when she beats him up

    - different voiceover used after Batty's death

    - ends with the elevator doors closing

    - shorter than other versions

This version was shown at the Fairfax Theater in 1990 and UCLA's Los Angeles Perspectives multimedia festival in 1991. This was also the print shown at a London sneak preview in March of 1982. A 35mm reduction of this version was later shown at the Nuart and Castro Theaters in 1991. There were rumours that THIS version was the original director's cut, but the official 1992 Director's Cut is not the same.

US San Diego Sneak Preview (115 min):

    - shows Batty making a telephone call to see if Chew is there

    - shows Deckard reloading his weapon after firing at Batty

    - Deckard and Rachael ride into the sunset

[Source: Video Watchdog no. 20, November-December 1993.]

European Theatrical Release/Criterion Laserdisc/Videocassette (117 min):

    - Batty sticks his thumbs in Tyrell's eyes, which bleed copiously.

    - Pris lifts Deckard up by his nostrils when she beats him up.

    - Deckard shoots Pris a third time.

    - more of Pris kicking and screaming when she is shot by Deckard.

    - shows Roy actually pushing the nail through his hand

    - Deckard and Rachael ride into the sunset

The added violence makes this version about 15 seconds longer than the US theatrical release. The 10th Anniversary video edition is the same as this release.

The Director's Cut (BRDC) (117 min):

    - voice-overs completely eliminated

    - added dialog from blimp to cover missing voice-over while Deckard waits for a seat at the noodle bar.

    - 12-second unicorn scene added when Deckard plays the piano

    - happy ending deleted (movie ends with elevator doors closing)

    - extra violence seen on videocassette deleted

    - digital soundtrack was remixed for BRDC.

Cable TV [? min]:

When BR first appeared on American cable TV, there was an additional line of dialog when Bryant gives Deckard the description, names, and addresses of Tyrell and Sebastian over the radio. In the cable TV version, Bryant adds "...and check 'em out" after he says "I want you to go down there." [This is an as-yet unconfirmed rumour.]

Is the soundtrack available?


In July 1994, Vangelis released the Official Blade Runner Soundtrack for the first time. Vangelis's notes accompanying the album say:

"Most of the music contained in this album originates from recordings I made in London in 1982, whilst working on the score for the film BLADE RUNNER. Finding myself unable to release these recordings at the time, it is with great pleasure that I am able to do so now. Some of the pieces contained will be known to you from the Original Soundtrack of the film, whilst others are appearing here for the first time. Looking back at RIDLEY SCOTT's powerful and evocative pictures left me as stimulated as before, and made the recompiling of this music, today, an enjoyable experience." - VANGELIS Athens, April 1994

The Soundtrack--in Europe: VANGELIS: "BLADE RUNNER OST," WEA Europe 4509-96574. In the United States: Atlantic Records 82623.

  • 1. Main Titles (3:42)
  • 2. Blush Response (5:47)
  • 3. Wait for Me (5:27)
  • 4. Rachel's Song (4:46)
  • 5. Love Theme (4:56)
  • 6. One More Kiss, Dear (3:58)
  • 7. Blade Runner Blues (8:53)
  • 8. Memories of Green (5:05)
  • 9. Tales of the Future (4:46)
  • 10. Damask Rose (2:32)
  • 11. Blade Runner (End Titles) (4:40)
  • 12. Tears in Rain (3:00)

The cover of the album is a closeup of the movie poster, showing Deckard, Rachael, and the roof of police headquarters. There are various photos inside, including a shot of Ridley Scott directing Harrison Ford.

Vangelis's decision to release the soundtrack might have been prompted by a bootleg copy of the Blade Runner Soundtrack which appeared in select stores a couple of days before Christmas 1993:

Original Motion Picture Soundtrack: Blade Runner Limited Edition of 2,000 (not licensed for public sale) Off World Music, Ltd., no. OWM 9301 Compact Disc (ADD)

  • 1. Ladd Company Logo (0:24), John Williams
  • 2. Main Titles and Prologue (4:03) Vangelis
  • 3. Los Angeles, November 2019 (1:46) Vangelis
  • 4. Deckard Meets Rachael (1:29) Vangelis
  • 5. Bicycle Riders [Harps of the Ancient Temples] (2:05) Gail Laughton
  • 6. Memories of Green (5:39) Vangelis
  • 7. Blade Runner Blues (10:19) Vangelis
  • 8. Deckard's Dream (1:12) Vangelis
  • 9. On the Trail of Nexus 6 (5:30) Vangelis
  • 10. If I Didn't Care (3:03) Jack Lawrence [only used in workprint]
  • 11. Love Theme (4:57) Vangelis
  • 12. The Prodigal Son Brings Death (3:35) Vangelis
  • 13. Dangerous Days (1:02) Vangelis
  • 14. Wounded Animals (10:58) Vangelis
  • 15. Tears in Rain (2:41) Vangelis
  • 16. End Titles (7:24) Vangelis
  • 17. One More Kiss Dear (4:00) Jack Skelling and Vangelis [theatrical release]
  • 18. Trailer and Alternate Main Titles (1:39) Robert Randles

Total disc time: 72:42

The bootleg CD includes an 8-page booklet containing 6 movie stills. Cover art is from the British one-sheet movie poster that accompanied the 1982 release. The back cover is a color still from an aborted sequence in which Leon's photo turns out to be a hologram that shows Batty's head turning (Cinefex no. 9, July 1982). The inside back cover is a bird's eye view of Deckard's spinner as he and Rachael escape the city (Official Blade Runner Souvenir Magazine, 1982). Another photo possibly unfamiliar to many is Deckard looking at Holden in a life-support machine (a similar photo appeared in Video Watchdog, Nov-Dec 1993).

According to the booklet, Scott contacted several composers in case the score by Vangelis didn't work out. His ultimate decision to supplement the film with other source music led to a contractual dispute with the composer. As a result, Vangelis refused to release the soundtrack album. Notes on the various pieces were interesting like the fact that the Love Theme and Rachael's piano playing are a variation on Chopin's 13th Nocturne. (The love theme used in the workprint is not included in this album.) The music for several pieces is heard complete for the first time and will prove fascinating listening for fans of the film, particularly nos. 9, 12, 13, and 14. Those familiar with the Warner Bros. New American Orchestra CD [see below] will also appreciate that Blade Runner Blues is more than twice as long on this CD. The producer (Christopher L. Shimata-Dominguez) displays a sense of humor with his name and Off World Music label. He also warns that unauthorized "replication" is a violation of applicable laws. The quality of the disc is quite good but the price tag may be a bit daunting; while not for public sale a contribution of US$34.95 was sufficient to obtain a copy of this individually numbered limited edition.

A record album called "Blade Runner" (Warner Bros. 23748, 1982) is available but it is NOT the actual movie soundtrack, rather it is an orchestral arrangement of the soundtrack performed by the New American Orchestra. It contains the following tracks:

  • Love Theme (4:12)
  • Main Title (5:01)
  • One More Kiss, Dear (4:00)
  • Memories Of Green (4:50)
  • End Title (4:17)
  • Blade Runner Blues (4:38)
  • Farewell (3:10)
  • Love Theme (4:12)

Vangelis released an album called "Themes" in 1992, which contains the following music from the movie soundtrack:

  • End Titles from "BLADERUNNER" (4:57)
  • Love Theme from "BLADERUNNER" (4:55)
  • Memories of Green (5:42)

"Memories of Green" was originally released on Vangelis's album "See You Later." Scott used the orchestrated version of "Memories of Green" in his film Someone to Watch Over Me.

Vangelis also wrote the score for Antarctica, which includes tracks very similar to those used in Blade Runner. His 1979 album "VANGELIS: Opera Sauvage" also contains tracks similar to those in Blade Runner.

The Japanese vocals associated with the Blimp are from the following:

"Japan: Traditional Vocal and Instrumental Music--Shakuhachi, Biwa, Koto, Shamisen," Nonesuch Explorer Series/Elektra Records 72084 [compact disc] Performed by Ensemble Nipponia, (P) 1976 Elektra/Asylum/Nonesuch Records for the US and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States.

The lyrics tell of the tragic and utter destruction of one Japanese clan by another.

Gail Laughton's "Harps of the Ancient Temples" is used as the bicyclists pass by Leon and Batty on their way to Chew's Eye World. This album is listed in old CD catalogs on the Laurel label, cat #111.

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