Article by Kieran Burt.
The world of Blade Runner will be getting a new instalment, but instead of a new film, this will be a limited TV series. Variety has confirmed that Amazon is in the process of developing a TV series, titled Blade Runner 2099 to go on its streaming service, Amazon Prime.
The series was confirmed earlier this year, but is now on firmer ground since this confirmation. Ridley Scott had first teased this series late in November, saying “We [have already] written the pilot for ‘Blade Runner’ and the bible. So, we’re already presenting ‘Blade Runner’ as a TV show, the first 10 hours.”
This series does have Ridley Scott attached as a producer and his production company, Scott Free Productions. Silka Luisa, who has previously worked on the Halo adaptation for Paramount+, will be the showrunner.
The plot of the show is being kept tightly under wraps, but it’s likely this will be a sequel set 50 years after the events of Blade Runner 2049. There hasn’t been any cast announcements as of yet, though it’s unlikely that the cast of the film will be returning.
Alcon Entertainment, the production company that holds the rights to Blade Runner, said Luisa has developed a “provocative storyline” for the show.
“We recognise that we have a very high bar to meet with this next instalment,” Andrew Kosove and Broderick Johnson, co-CEOs and co-founders of Alcon, said in a statement. “Together with Silka and our partners at Amazon, and Scott Free Productions, we hope that we can live up to that standard and delight audiences with the next generation of Blade Runner.”
Amazon Studios’ head of global television, Vernon Sanders, called Scott’s 1982 film “one of the greatest and most influential science-fiction movies of all time”.
“We are honoured to be able to present this continuation of the Blade Runner franchise, and are confident that by teaming up with Ridley, Alcon Entertainment, Scott Free Productions and the remarkably talented Silka Luisa, Blade Runner 2099 will uphold the intellect, themes and spirit of its film predecessors,” Sanders said.
The original film, Blade Runner, was released in 1982 and set in 2019, and took many elements from Philip K. Dick’s 1968 novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? It starred Harrison Ford as Rick Deckard, a bounty hunter who kills Replicants (androids). The sequel, Blade Runner 2049, released in 2017, sees Ryan Gosling star as K, who unearths a conspiracy that leads him on a quest to find Rick Deckard, in which Harrison Ford reprises his role.
In 2021, Adult Swim co-produced an anime series called Blade Runner: Black Lotus, with Crunchyroll. This was a series set in 2032, and follows an amnesiac Replicant Elle makes her way to Los Angeles to rediscover her identity and swears revenge on those who target her for sport.
Blade Runner will have an RPG released in fall 2022, and will see players customise their backstory, and work for the Los Angeles Police Department’s Rep-Detect Unit.
It’s not known when the Blade Runner TV series will be released on Amazon Prime, though it’s likely to be a while away yet.