Geoffrey Macnab: Are you ready for Ridley Scott, the 'brand'?

Share
Related Topics

The British and the Americans have different attitudes toward the idea of sequels and prequels. If a film is seen as a classic, the Brits tend to leave it alone for fear of tarnishing the original's reputation. For the Americans, the key question is whether there is money still on the table.

Alcon Entertainment is proposing is to turn Blade Runner, Ridley Scott's revered adaptation of Philip K Dick's novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, into a brand.

The company is talking in terms of a "franchise" and of "multi-platform concepts," which could mean Blade Runner mutating into computer games, animated series and iPad apps. If new films are made, it is almost inevitable that the follow-ups won't be a patch on Scott's film. But they will likely find a mass audience.

Should we be upset? The answer is, surely, no. Blade Runner was a film about replicants, so we shouldn't be surprised that a new generation of producers wants to replicate it. Thanks to the clones of Blade Runner, in whichever form they may appear, a younger audience will be guided toward the Ridley Scott movie.

Sean Young, Rutger Hauer and Daryl Hannah, who all enjoyed cult status thanks to their turns as androids, will be pushed back into the limelight. Harrison Ford clashed with Scott during shooting and for 30 years he has ignored a film he didn't enjoy making and he is unlikely to pay much attention to sequels either.

In the mid-1990s, the British producer Andrew Macdonald complained about the British aversion to sequels. He said he would have no problem with making a follow-up to Trainspotting (an ambition still being pursued today). It made commercial sense, he added.

More recently, British company Optimum had no compunctions about remaking Brighton Rock. If you can secure rights to a film that has already been successful, there is an obvious and immediate upside.

After all, in the film industry, every new project is a prototype. You can't just hit on a formula that works then mass-manufacture it. That's why sequels and prequels to movies that have already proved their mettle seem so attractive; they're a way for producers to hedge their bets.

In the era of the Xbox and the PlayStation, when the boundaries between computer games and feature films is fast blurring, Blade Runner is an obvious property to revisit.

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Sales Administrator - Spanish Speaking

£17000 - £21000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Administrator - German Speaking

£17000 - £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Administrator - Japanese Speaking

£17000 - £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: If you are fluent in Japanese a...

Recruitment Genius: Graphic Designer - Immediate Start

£16000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...

Day In a Page

Read Next
 

Forget charging by the page - with books, heart matters more than heft

Katy Guest
George Osborne likes to think of himself as the greatest political mind of his generation  

Budget 2015: It takes a lot of hard work to be as lucky as George Osborne

John Rentoul
Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate
Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Africa on the menu: Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the continent

Africa on the menu

Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'
10 best statement lightbulbs

10 best statement lightbulbs

Dare to bare with some out-of-the-ordinary illumination
Wimbledon 2015: Heather Watson - 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Heather Watson: 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Briton pumped up for dream meeting with world No 1
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Files

It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve
Dustin Brown: Who is the tennis player who knocked Rafael Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?

Dustin Brown

Who is the German player that knocked Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?
Ashes 2015: Damien Martyn - 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

Damien Martyn: 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

Australian veteran of that Ashes series, believes the hosts' may become unstoppable if they win the first Test