The Story Behind 'Blade Runner'

In 1982, the Nexus 6 was not an Android smartphone (heck, the iPhone was still 25 years away); it was an android in what would come to be regarded as a science-fiction masterpiece—the motion picture Blade Runner . The story of how Blade Runner —and its sequel, Blade Runner 2049 —made it to the silver screen takes as many dips and turns as one of those flying L.A. police cars. And the man in the driver’s seat for much of it is a 79-year-old free spirit now based in Brooklyn, screenwriter Hampton Fancher. "I never thought about writing it in the first place," Fancher told PCMag. "I didn’t feel qualified or interested in science fiction. It was just a commercial venture idea for me, which I had never had before or since probably." Fancher’s motivation was personal: his close friend Brian Kelly, who starred in the hit 1960’s TV series Flipper , was partially paralyzed after getting into an accident on one of Fancher’s motorcycles in 1970. Even though it wasn’t Fancher’s fault, he on some level felt responsible for Kelly, who pleaded with Fancher to come up with a film project. Fancher gave Kelly a phone number for […]

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