If you haven’t seen Blade Runner 2049 this following editorial will casually include spoilers, you’ve been warned.
Ridley Scott’s original Blade Runner is easily one of the most beautiful films ever shot and while it had some interesting ideas, Denis Villeneuve’s Blade Runner 2049 really jump-started this world as being expansive and full of interesting science fiction concepts worth further exploring.
My hope would be that once Denis Villeneuve is finished with his Dune movies he’ll eventually return to Blade Runner and at least give us one more movie. There is plenty of stuff they could tackle in another movie or two that was set up with Blade Runner 2049, one of the best aspects of the film was Denis’ aim to world build and add to what Ridley Scott previously did, giving them plenty of places to go in future films.
Sequels would most likely center around Carla Juri’s Ana and Harrison Ford’s Deckard as the ending of 2049 alludes that K dies. Learning that Ryan Gosling’s K isn’t the son of Deckard but manipulated by Dr. Ana Stelline to help connect her to her father was certainly an interesting twist, even more than Ridley Scott’s ‘Deckard is a Replicant’ from the Final Cut version of Blade Runner. I’m curious how the pair factor in with the Replicant Freedom Movement and what the next step will be, will they go public or fight?
The off-world colonies of the franchise have never fully been explored and are worth considering for sequels. We got flashes of one in the short film Black Out 2022. One of the best scenes in the original film is the improvised speech by actor Rutger Hauer’s Roy Batty painting a magnificent picture of what the off-world colonies could look like and horrid conditions Replicants are forced to live with.
Calantha aka Kalanthia is one of these Blade Runner universe colonies (briefly shown as a desert planetoid in Black Out 2022) and might make for an interesting location as we’ve seen two films set on Earth, it’s depicted as a brutal place and the location of off-world wars between humans/replicants with replicants fighting on both sides. Nexus-8 characters Sapper Morton and Freysa Sadeghpour were veterans of this war. While Calantha is never mentioned as being on Mars the terrain and use of breathers (as seen in Black Out 2022) would suggest it could be.
It’s unknown what that colony looks like in 2049, and if people are still living there but the major theme is that Earth is full of people that couldn’t leave giving the impression that most of the popular have left already, presuming that the colonies have a high population of both humans and replicants. It would be nice to see them establish how many colonies exist and what they actually look like, how they’re run along with the societal structure for humans versus replicants.
Jared Leto’s villainous Niander Wallace of the Wallace Corporation is left alive to make a return and could be the entry point for audiences to be taken off-world. Possibly having him leave Earth to oversee off-world operations (or for his own safety) and this is where a new wave of replicant resistance operations could take place, possibly setting up a full-scale war. It’s been hinted to in basically all of these Blade Runner stories that replicants are used for military purposes, another aspect of the mythology yet to be mined. I’m interested to see where the replicants are sent, their purpose, and if the Wallace Corporation is indeed entangled with the colonies and their military outposts like the Tyrell Corporation was previously before the blackout.
We are introduced to the Replicant Freedom Movement led by Hiam Abbass’ Freysa Sadeghpour and includes Mackenzie Davis’ Mariette among their ranks, potentially a group that takes on the Wallace Corporation in sequels that Ana and Deckard become affiliated with.
Luckily, it was recently announced that Alcon Television, Warner Bros’ Adult Swim and Crunchyroll would be teaming up for an anime limited-series titled Blade Runner: Black Lotus. Although, the 13-episode series will be set in 2032 taking place ten years after Blade Runner: Black Out 2022. I’m still hopeful that the series could help flesh out some stuff Denis Villeneuve and the screenwriters attempted to do with their worldbuilding.
However, I do think it’s still worth making future live-action sequels and continuing the Deckard story along with seeing what the Replicants plan on doing. The new anime series could easily help awareness with international viewers with varying age-ranges and place the IP on the radar to a future audience.