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Blade Runner News Archive - 2006 (Jul-Sep)

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Please note that most links are not revised. Although correct when originally written, the nature of news means that I cannot guarantee that any particular link will still be valid today.

30 Sep 2006 Maybe it is because I haven't had any decent Indian food recently, but this article made me salivate. The picture alone makes me hungry for a Biryani. And makes me miss England where international cuisine is vastly more available and much higher quality than in the US Midwest where I currently exist. Oh, the article (in The Australian - Travel section this time) - it says, "THE old Indian city of Hyderabad feels as if it were built for the future; prophetic, perhaps, because these days it's starting to look like a science fiction vision far stranger than the familiar fantasies of Blade Runner."
30 Sep 2006 It seems that short films are not what they used to be. The Australian (Arts section) laments the demise of narrative in short films and how that translates to big movies. Pointed to are a trio of Cinema 16 DVDs of short films - mostly created a long time ago by directors who are now household names - like Ridley Scott for example and his "Boy and Bicycle" which was made almost half a century ago (actually I thought it was mid-60s, but hey, I'm only an expert so what do I know...).
28 Sep 2006 The future keeps marching on and advertising takes advantage. Now in some cities, taxi cabs carry a visual advertising display atop the roof that changes the theme of advertising depending on location (financial district, urban, suburban, etc.) Wireless communication, bright visual digital displays, GPS - The Very Intelligent Display is truly affordable 21st Century technology being applied in our streets. Article.
28 Sep 2006 What will the city of the future look like? In 1982, "the future" was the 21st Century, so almost a quarter century later, we are living in what was the "near future" back then . Self-evidently, what was dreamed of 50 years ago is now the future 50 years hence. And while many of you reading this were not born 50 years ago, some were, and I would guess the majority of you are at least 25. So, 'that' future has arrived and what? Oil consumption higher than ever, especially in a greedy USA. Peak World oil production predicted even by oil companies themselves to be within 15 years (and some predict much sooner. So what of the city's transformation from back then to now to the future? James Howard Kunstler has a pessimistic view.
28 Sep 2006 Although many reviewers have drawn Blade Runner as an obvious influence on Renaissance, it is still nice that the creator has directly acknowledged the influence as reported in this article.
22 Sep 2006 If you want to know a little more about the Renaissance movie, then I suggest you read this IGN interview with its creator, Christian Volckman.
22 Sep 2006 I think the subject of the last article is quite fascinating, but to truly get all the way to the Edge, you need the urban Rooftop Cinema where you can watch such wonderful films as Blade Runner while sitting on your city rooftop quaffing wine. The Age tells us of "The new cinema, which will screen films via a digital projector, will seat 200 viewers in deckchairs on synthetic grass, and offer some of Melbourne's best views". This phenomenon is spreading across Metopolises around the world. Sounds great to me!
22 Sep 2006 When is an umbrella not just an umbrella? Of course BR fans will immediately start thinking of umbrellas that light up, but that just isn't offbeat enough. I'm out at the Edge and what I see are people turning the umbrella into a mechanism to display their photos. Portable telephone/mp3 player/camera not enough for you? Perhaps you need an Umbrella Photo Browser.
20 Sep 2006 interviews Colin Angle, co-creator/SEO of iRobot (creators of Roomba and Scooba and more), about the realities of current commercial robots and the immediate future of robotics in real life. Includes a link to 25 seminal moments in robotics history.
19 Sep 2006 Ronald D. Moore, inspired by the Original Star Trek Series and writer for latter day ST series, as well as Battlestar Galactica, puts forward his inpiration of the positive ST-type future as opposed to the dystopian BR-type future. His characters, in the footsteps of Kirk, acknowledge the failings of humanity, but eternally strive to rise above them. Article in the Herald Tribune.
18 Sep 2006 The Comic Book Bin reviews the new "Eight Way Bandits". Set in the very near future in a Cyberpunk type world, Bounyoy Pfau, aka 'Boy', is genetically engineered to be superior in strength, speed, intelligence, etc. than the men who engineered him... He is "owned" by the megacorp that created him. And he is the Bounty Hunter. Of course it rapidly gets more convoluted, but sounds like the sort of thing some of you BR fans might like.
18 Sep 2006 This article is titled 'Blade Runner' due to it's association with helicopters. I include it as inspiration for the real world where if you believe in a dream and are prepared to work at it, you can make the dream come to life. This is real life...
18 Sep 2006 Oh, I can't resist telling you about this. It is only vaguely related to BR, but is just so fascinating. Apparently, there is a certain area of New York (the East River Waterfront) that is absolutely ripe for a certain real estate developer to "redevelop". Problem arises when certain people voice their opinion that certain buildings should be preserved for "heritage". Oh, but strangely, said buildings end up on fire and burning to the ground. How unfortunate! Of course heritage protectors can't protect a hole in the ground, so redevelopment is now free to continue. And of course redevelopment entrepreneur Mr Guttman had nothing to do with any arson. So says his lawyer Israel Goldberg. You just can't make this up. Monty Python or Not the Nine o' Clock News Or Saturday Night Live would just die for material like this!
09 Sep 2006 How do the street vendors in BR speak? Well apparently the same way they speak in Singapore. The Daily Atorian has an article about Indonesia, Riau and Singapore.
09 Sep 2006 You've seen his posters. He is the ultimate film poster creator. John Alvin - read about him in the Washington Post.
05 Sep 2006 Syd Mead is well known to BR fans. Here he contributes to an art exhibition of the future. The Crewest Gallery in L.A. has an exhibition called “The Hidden Futures” which 'explores the possibilities of tomorrow'. On 9 Sep - 8 Oct.
05 Sep 2006 So what exactly is the effect of the internet or any other 'future' technology on our lives? Tyee Books reviews the book "Future Hype" by Bob Seidensticker which takes a somewhat cynical view of current developments in technology. Are we really progressing as fast as we think we are? Well, tell you what I think - you wouldn't be reading what I think if it weren't for the internet. Nor would you be able to read this book review unless you happened to be a subscriber and quite frankly, I will always read Wired magazine first.
29 Aug 2006 I've mentioned it before and now I'm mentioning it again, because you need to know. The New Zealand Scoop makes a strong recommendation for the animated movie 'Reniassance'. See Renaissance official site.
29 Aug 2006 'Blond, Blue Eyes' - Rutger Hauer of course! Or, more precisely, a documentary covering two years of his life. He is the most internationally famous Dutch actor of all time and you've probably seen him in numerous movies, so this insight into his life should be quite interesting. Filmed by Simone de Vries, according to Expatica it will be shown at the Netherlands film festival on 4th October.
25 Aug 2006 Is this new "designer garage" really like something out of Blade Runner? Commissioned by CitroŽn, it will cost you £112,330. Made of light-transmitting concrete and other high-tech stuff nobody needs, you can switch between 'pride or hide modes'. Or you could make a decision before you build your garage whether you want your car to be hidden, (buy concrete walls), or if you want it to be seen, (buy glass walls), ... and save yourself £100,000 (or buy yourself a couple more cars). And if you have that sort of money and want a terrace, you really don't need to make it on top of your garage... Read the article at ... umm... (Yeah, I know, essential reading for the Cyberpunk futurist...)
24 Aug 2006 What can films such as "Blade Runner," "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind" and "Super Size Me" teach us about the ethical, social and legal implications of bioethics? This question will be asked by Arizona State University's Bioethics, Policy and Law Program. This examination of biotechnology will show several excellent films during the course, including BR. I mention it not just for the inherent interest, but because the films are free and open to the public. Read more.
21 Aug 2006 Digital 04 Studios will be hosting a new Digital Art Conference in Montreal on September 23/24. Syd Mead will be one of the guest speakers. bytesector article.
18 Aug 2006 Full Metal Apache: Transactions Between Cyberpunk Japan and Avant-Pop America - By Takayuki Tatsumi (wow, glad I can copy/paste that!) The Daily Yomiuri Online reviews this book - an examination of postmodern culture, subculture and literary/filmic Oriental/Occidental recombination. Who is influenced by whom? In a world where we are constantly reinventing ourselves and others, country borders have little to do with the new world culture. Or to cite an obvious example: is an international website reporting on an article in Japan's largest English language newspaper reviewing a book by a Japanese university professor about East-West cross-culturalism? I think I'm turning Japanese, I really think so...
14 Aug 2006 Popular Science discusses "The Fembot Mystique". Why are we fascinated with the likes of Pris, Maria or any Number 6 (e.g. from Battlestar Galactica or Tripping the Rift, (but not The Prisoner!))? I shall refrain from suggesting an answer, or why I want a Nexus 6 pleasure model for myself...
11 Aug 2006 A film of cult British SF show "The Prisoner"? According to Coming Soon, it is to be written by Janet and David Peoples, (David was second scriptwriter for BR and together with his wife, they wrote Twelve Monkeys). Potential director is Chris Nolan, who is currently working on the sequel to Batman Begins - The Dark Knight. I'm wary. Hollywoodized movies of cult British TV shows are some of the most utterly crap movies ever made, because they usually lose the very essence of what made the show popular (on both sides of the Atlantic) in the first place. (e.g. The Avengers, The Saint, Thunderbirds, HHGG...) And with The Prisoner, part of what appeals is numerous episodes to tell the tale. Can it be done effectively in two hours? I guess we'll just have to wait and see.
08 Aug 2006 I mentioned a week ago that Bill Pullman was being hailed as a bit of a Dick. Now Paul Giamatti is apparently also going to play Philip K. Dick. "Also" because we're talking about another PKD movie, that is, a movie about PKD rather than an adaptation of one of his stories. As my mother would have said, "It never rains, but it pours."
04 Aug 2006 Sir Ridley Scott was in charge of creation of the definitive future city of L.A. 2019 and apartments of a few of the characters in Blade Runner. He supervised creation of the most magical of forests in Legend. So what about his own house? Well, perhaps he really needs to rely on set designers... The Evening Standard reports on an interior designer's view of exactly what is wrong with Ridley's own digs.
04 Aug 2006 Apparently, according to EURweb, Mariah Carey will have lots of costume changes in each performance of her new tour, starting with a "Blade Runer look" - apparently a B&W R&B superhero... Okaaay.....
31 Jul 2006 Cinema Blend, Movieweb and Dark Horizons report on the Production Weekly story that Bill Pullman may have been been given the role of Philip K. Dick in "Panasonic". It will be a fictional film, but based on the writings and imagined worlds of PKD.
Update: Now confirmed.
30 Jul 2006 Don't be surprised when you visit Mawu Village in Beijing's Tongzhou District and see a 1.8 metre (5'11") tall robot pulling a rickshaw. This is the 25th robot creation of Wu Yulu who is a farmer and creates robots just for fun. Read the China Daily story to find out about this interesting character.
29 Jul 2006 I've probably mentioned "Second Life" in the past few months. Well. Now I'm mentioning it again! Until you get a virtual life in addition to your real one, you are only existing. Timesonline takes a look at the rapidly expanding Second Life. Is it Blade Runner? Well, it can be anything you make it. So go make it.
28 Jul 2006 I suspect that most of the regular readers here are at the very least open-minded about scientific advancemenents and the people who discover and create them. Blade Runner is one of many films that takes things to an extreme and sees what happens. Not human cloning as such, but creation of robot slaves from human DNA is only one step away. Like most films of this nature, the scientist behind it all is shown to be doing something that ultimately is "morally bad", (even though it starts with the best of intentions). No wonder the general populace has an apprehensive view of scientists and what they do. Brian J. Roseberg writes for the Harvard Crimson Opinion page of The Misunderstood Scientist and why The modern myth must be debunked.
27 Jul 2006 In today's world, does having a fanatical knowledge about films really have a place? Well, I've devoted a quite large website (with the help of many others' contributions) to just one film, so I think you can guess my answer! Even many of the film scholars or self-created critics would acknowledge that the fan interested in the minutiae of the film, the making of the film, etc. has an important place. Indeed, I suspect that two groups are actually two sides of the same coin. So, where do the fine details come from? One great source is the magazines devoted to film. PopMatters takes a look at these, especially in the horror genre, but ends up the first of two articles with a look at Cinefantastique. An excellent source for film detail in the 70's and 80's, the mags contain wonderfully in-depth information about Blade Runner. The assignment to cover BR went to Paul M. Sammon which eventually led him to write the book "Future Noir", widely referred to by BR fans as "The BR Bible". Can we have too much information about a film? ... No.
23 Jul 2006 Film versus TV? I strongly support both. No need to pretend one is "better" than the other. Film is powerful, but TV has more scope and much more time to build stories and characters. This is the view expounded by The Age - and how the best filmmakers really should also make TV - and I quite agree. Take, for example, the Scott Free produced "Numb3rs" - I am personally delighted the show even exists, let alone is quite enjoyable. I am sufficiently the math-whiz myself that I can appreciate it beyond the drama and even criticize at that level, but still appreciate the fact that I am watching a good detective show that incorporates advanced mathematical theories into practical applications to help solve crimes. Where else but TV? And who else but some talented people willing to push past the soap operas and "reality" TV dross?
21 Jul 2006 So, I was watching Stargate SG-1, as I still do, and they're still infusing it with humour and references their audience will relate to. Such as the reference to the "Knights who say 'Ni'" for Python fans. Then when Vala (from another planet, but human) is studying for a psych evaluation (so she can give the "right" answers) reads off the computer, "You're in a desert. You look down and see a tortoise lying on its back, its belly baking in the hot sun and you're not helping. Why is that?" The answer she comes up with for not helping is that she is also a tortoise...
20 Jul 2006 Watch out for animated film "Renaissance", set in Paris, 2054 - some are saying like Metropolis and Blade Runner. It has voice stars Daniel Craig (the new James Bond) and Ian Holm (one of my all-time fave actors - Alien, Brazil, Fifth Element, LotR amongst many others). Check the official site.
18 Jul 2006 What do the experts think are the Top 25 "must-see" films of all time? Well who cares as long as BR is on the list! The Radio Times "expert", Andrew Collins, is responsible for the "Film Buff's Guide", according to The Mirror, also reported in The Scotsman. An interesting selection - have you seen them all (probably not), some very deservely on the list and definitely the odd film there that I would strongly challenge.
16 Jul 2006 sonicstate points us to a collection of videos about Vangelis. Definitely worth a look as genius musician Vangelis tends to steer away from public view. Find out more about him and his music, (which goes far beyond the soundtrack for BR).
15 Jul 2006 "A documentary, "Visual Futurist: The Art and Life of Syd Mead," will debut in Los Angeles next Sunday." Syd is the futurist behind much of the look of Blade Runner and his visions have inspired far beyond that. Last Monday, he was awarded a special commendation at the National Design Awards, honoring his influence on how others design for the future. The ceremony was held at the White House. The Washington Post takes a quick look at his visions with comments by Syd on what he really thinks about them. I found a trailer for the film and that led me to this. The film will be shown at the Dances With Films Festival. This year the festival runs July 21- 27 at the Laemmle's FAIRFAX 3. Syd Mead will be there for a Q & A on July 23rd, 12:30 p.m. showing.
14 Jul 2006 abc news has a great summary (from PC Magazine) of all those gadgets and technologies predicted in Science Fiction and where they are in the real world of 2006. Article by David Gerrold, SF author, who inflicted us with Star Trek's "The Trouble with Tribbles" (amongst many other things). Don't you just wish you could have one of those portable communication devices from those old SF films - you know, you could walk around a city with one and communicate with another person walking around the city? Well, I got my first cellphone over 10 years ago. Sometimes SF predicts the future, sometimes it inspires people to create the future!
13 Jul 2006 Instead of suggesting you look at one of the reviews for "A Scanner Darkly", (a few of which are good, some are factual and many make you realise that any tosser can get a job as a movie reviewer somewhere ...), I have something infinitely better: Well, actually IGN has it - the first 24 minutes of the film for free viewing on the internet. If you are not sure if you want to see the film, then watch this. The plot of the film deepens further on in the film, but you can at least identify if you will find it watchable. There are also interview clips available here.
06 Jul 2006 One of the many influences BR has is on the fashion world. Even haute couture, as The Telegraph + 2 reports of Galliano's latest collection for Dior, ("on Planet Botticelli"). The Telegraph articles don't have the relevant pictures - a better idea of what they look like can be found at - I've set the link to page 3 of the collection which is where the Pris-a-like models are.
03 Jul 2006 So, Film Four is finally going free. Whoopty doo... When I was living in the UK, I sure as hell didn't think they were worth 7 quid a month! So, they're celebrating by showing their 50 top films, according to BrandRepublic, who point out their blindingly obvious omissions. Notably Blade Runner, which never fails to make the Top 20 of EVERY British film survey for many years. No wonder Film Four have had to go free when they are so totally out of touch with the tastes of the British public!

If you see a Blade Runner article not listed, please send me the link so I can add it.