Dangerous Days: Making Blade Runner

Synopsis: The definitive three-and-a-half hour documentary about the troubled creation and enduring legacy of the science fiction classic Blade Runner (1982), culled from 80 interviews and hours of never-before-seen outtakes and lost footage.
Genre: Documentary
Production: Warner Home Video
214 min

Enhance 224 to 176.



You have all the tools...

...colors, toys,

everything at your disposal...

...to transport you to

an imaginary world.

People's patience and their willingness

to persevere tended to erode...

...as we went on

shooting nights in smoke.

It was a b*tch working every night.

All night long, often in the rain.

So it wasn't the most pleasant shoot.

The tension...

...and the atmosphere created

was absolutely palpable.

It was enormous. Overwhelming,

beautiful, enormous, great.

And I was living there.

I don't think some of these people

on the crew really understood how far...

...Ridley was pushing the medium.

The chaos of that production.

Everybody hating it.

People don't wanna be in movies

after they worked on that movie.

It's like all those things informed this

in a magical way, I guess.

When it first came out,

it was too intense to let in...

...the darkness and the poverty...

...and the projection of what life

would be like in 2019.

What Ridley created was this

multilayered, very intense...

"investigation into

how that world might be.

How do you prepare the audience...

...for seeing something very different?

Now time has prepared them.

It was so dark.

And so intense

and so beautifully constructed.

I was absolutely about coordinating

beauty. Shot by shot had to be great.

My weapon was that camera.

I'll get what I wanted.

If you're there with me, great.

If you're not there with me, too bad.

In 1975,

someone gave me some money.

They pitied me.

They said. "You gotta...

...do what you wanna do.

Here's some money.

You can go away and write."

And so I did.

And it didn't work out, you know.

I thought I would produce a movie.

And this guy Jim Maxwell, who's

a close friend and knows me well...

...and he said, "You might..."

I said. "I think science fiction's

gonna happen."

And he said. "Okay, I know a..."

He says. "You know

who Philip K. Dick is?" I said, "No."

He said, "There's a book called

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?"

I said. "Okay, I'll read that."

I read it, I didn't like it that much.

But I thought, "Okay, that's commercial.

Here's a throughline:

You know, bureaucratic detective

chasing androids."

In '78 or so, my friend Brian Kelly,

he had $5000 or something.

He said. "You could get an option. That

might be a good commercial project...

...that you could get behind and make...

You know, make some money."

That's all we were talking about,

making some money.

I'd been pursued for about two years

by Brian Kelly...

...a close friend of mine,

who had this idea in mind...

...to make a movie based upon Dick's

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?

And I'd first read it

and thought I wasn't very interested.

He read the book, and he said.

"It ain't a movie."

And then Brian came back to me

and said. "That's what-l'

I said. "He's full of sh*t.

There's a movie there."

He said. "Could you

write something down to prove it?"

So I wrote five pages,

what I thought could be a structure.

And he took that to Michael Deeley...

I didn't know Michael Deeley.

And Brian came back and said.

"Michael Deeley says it sucks."

Then he came back with a script,

which wasn't terrific...

...but it was interesting.

Unfortunately, the scripts

Hampton generated initially...

...did not meet with Phil's approval,

to put it mildly.

He thought, again,

that it had been dumbed down...

...that it turned into, you know,

a detective just chasing androids around.

Well, he was really protective...

...of Do Androids Dream

of Electric Sheep? Understandably so.

Certain things were dear to him

in that story...

...mostly around, you know, what is

human, and what makes us human.

It was the Hampton Fancher script...

...which Phil was skeptical of,

because it did include a voice-over.

The very first draft that he did

was much smaller in scale...

...than anything

that's been on the Internet...

...or anything

that has been talked about.

It was a...

Probably maybe a low-budget...

...maybe a one-room

kind of motion picture.

And it all took place mostly

in apartments, a few street scenes...

...and at the very end.

Rachael kills herself.

This was a small movie.

That's how I wanna do it, It's rooms.

You know, a strange movie,

but it's, you know, a face-to-face movie.

People are talking.

And I had this dream of actors...

You know, like the right kind of actors.

The right kind of actors' director.

Hampton saw the novel as reflecting

a lot of real-world current concerns.

And strangely, one of the largest

motivating factors...

...was the ecological concern

that is in the original novel.

The fact that the Earth is slowly falling

apart because of these world wars...

...and because of these biological

plagues and that type of thing.

And, of course, those are all analogues

for pollution and for overpopulation.

The intellectual aspects

of the screenplay...

...were taken from my response to

the death of animal life on this planet...

...and what that meant. That's probably

the thing that saw me through it...

...the first draft,

was I had a passion about that...

...so my affection for the project

was consistent.

Finally, when I was

really looking for something...

...Brian popped back in again

with another script.

The way he put it was he told me that

he'd got several studios interested...

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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