“Was Rick Deckard a Replicant?”
It’s a question that has haunted us for more than three decades now. Alongside the likes of “What was in the briefcase in Pulp Fiction?” or “What did Bill Murray whisper to Scarlett Johansson in Lost in Translation?” or “Why did anyone greenlight Movie 43?”, this quandary about the nature of Harrison Ford’s character in Blade Runner ranks as one of the most formidable movie mysteries of all time. And although the riddle is what helps to imbue the Ridley Scott sci-fi epic with such lasting gravitas, we might actually be closing in on an answer.
In speaking with IGN, the usually closed-mouthed Ford revealed that he has been “chatting about” the possibility of joining a Blade Runner sequel with Ridley Scott, whom he states that he “admire[s] … as a man and as a director.” While the inclusion of the Rick Deckard character in a follow-up to Scott’s 1982 feature would not necessitate an answer to the eternally booming question, the casting of Ford might very well leave us with speculations. After all, Ford is, and looks, 30 years older than he was in Blade Runner. And if he was a Replicant — to those unfamiliar with the terminology, an android — this (or any) degree of organic aging might seem quite curious.
That’s not to say that Scott and his screenwriters couldn’t conceivably write around the idea, maintaining the ambiguity of Deckard’s humanity. And while we’re hesitant about a Blade Runner sequel, especially one with Ford involved (his recent turns in front of the camera have not come with the same whimsy for performing that we used to know), we’re not ready to cast out the project entirely. Prometheus had its faults, but was overall a worthwhile time at the movies. If Blade Runner 2 is at least that, we’d call it a win.