Warner Bros. celebrates Blade Runner 35th anniversary with newly restored Blu-ray edition and Alamo event

Yes, the celebration of the movies of 1982 just keeps getting better.  As Blade Runner turns 35, Warner Bros. has partnered with Alamo Drafthouse theaters to present a new 4K restoration of Blade Runner: The Final Cut.  You thought you saw the final version of Ridley Scott’s original vision with the 2007 version?  Well you did, primarily.  Blade Runner: The Final Cut was in theaters only briefly then it was issued in several home variations.  The Final Cut featured restored and re-mastered original elements, plus added and extended scenes, added dialogue, along with new and improved special effects.  The version returning to theaters for the Alamo Drafthouse event updates the 2007 film version with 4K resolution, promising a more immersive theatrical experience than seen before.

All told, Blade Runner is one of the most modified and re-released films around.  The Final Cut was the eighth edition of the loose adaptation of Philip K. Dick’s sci-fi classic novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, and this new edition is basically the same as 2007 with a sound and picture upgrade.  Does that make it the ninth version?  That depends on who you ask.  The biggest difference between the original and the earlier director’s cut was the elimination of Harrison Ford’s narration, Philip Marlowe style.  If you’re a fan of classic noir like we are, you really missed the narration in the later editions from the original theatrical release–that narration gave a nice retro feel in contrast to such a darkly futuristic film.  Legal entanglements, cuts for TV and DVD, and more, and a resolution or two later and here we are with this new upgrade.

Leading up to the October 6 release of the long-awaited–unlikely–sequel, Blade Runner 2049, Warner Bros. is releasing a 35th anniversary edition home release of Blade Runner: The Final Cut, coming September 5, including director commentary.  You can pre-order the Ultra HD Blu-ray Combo Pack and Digital here at Amazon now.

Here is a trailer for the 4K edition:

If you’ve never seen Blade Runner in the theater and even if you have, why not see it looking and sounding better than ever before?  Seeing Sean Young on the big screen again is reason alone, but remember every powerhouse actor featured in the film in addition to Ford and Young: Daryl Hannah (Splash, Kill Bill, Memoirs of an Invisible Man), Edward James Olmos (Battlestar Galactica, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.), Rutger Hauer (Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Ladyhawke), Joanna Cassidy (Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Heroes, Star Trek Enterprise, Bullitt), Brion James (Silverado, The Fifth Element, Enemy Mine), James Hong (Big Trouble in Little China, The X-Files, The Two Jakes, Dragnet), William Sanderson (Newhart, The X-Files, The Rocketeer, Fletch), and M. Emmet Walsh (The Jerk, Fletch, Raising Arizona, Harry and the Hendersons).

Blade Runner: The Final Cut will screen at Alamo Drafthouse theaters only, for one night only, August 31.  Order tickets at the Alamo Drafthouse website here now.

C.J. Bunce


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