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Frank Darabont Hates The Blade Runner Voice-Over

Director Frank Darabont (The Shawshank Redemption and next year’s Fahrenheit 451 adaptation) has some…words…to say about the studio-forced voiceover narration of the original Blade Runner theatrical release.

[via videosift]

About John DeNardo (13012 Articles)
John DeNardo is the Managing Editor at SF Signal and a columnist at Kirkus Reviews. He also likes bagels. So there.

8 Comments on Frank Darabont Hates The Blade Runner Voice-Over

  1. Ésquilo // May 17, 2009 at 8:29 am //

    Well, who doesn’t?

  2. Frank nails it. The voice over is clunky, especially in that scene.  I prefer viewing BR without it.

  3. Dean Stevenson // May 17, 2009 at 10:20 am //

    While he may be correct about the voiceover for this particular scene, and I’m not here to argue that, any assertion that the film is well done without the explanatory voiceover is absurd.  Save me the “artistic purity” crap, the movie was too esoteric and too far out there for theatrical release.  I’m a big believer in giving the director some artistic leeway but please don’t tell me that the director’s cut of Blade Runner is better than the theatrical release.  It’s not and it won’t ever be.  This is one example where the movie studio made the film better than it would have been.  I’m not saying it happens often or even occasionally, but this time they got it right.

  4. The Director’s Cut is better than the theatrical release 🙂

  5. Matte Lozenge // May 17, 2009 at 1:32 pm //

    And the Final Cut is even better 🙂

    Let’s hear it for treating the audience with a modicum of respect for their intelligence.

  6. The Director’s Cut is WAY better than the studio hacked version. The studio did what Hollywood are still doing to this day and treated their audience like idiots. If you allow for intelligence in your audience, you’ll make a better film.

    I’m not entirely against the theatrical release – I watched it dozens of times – but the director’s cut (and the final cut) are far superior. I haven’t watched the clunky voiceover version in years!



  7. I agree that the VO was not great.  Look, one of my favorite films of all time is Bladerunner.  But my thought is, ‘yeah, so?’  We’ve heard all this before.  Oh, Frank Darabont is saying it now, well, thats different.  It really must be crap….?  These arguments arent new people.  Books have been written on them.  Who cares….

  8. Weyland Yutani // May 18, 2009 at 1:34 pm //

    That is one of the better moments in filmed science fiction and Darabont nails his critique of the clunky VO.

    As a thought, I recently viewed Spielberg’s AI:Artificial Intelligence and truly believe that Kubrick could have fashioned the film into something special by tipping the storytelling into his controlled ambiguity and sense of knowing when the story has been told.

    I’m not certain where the Kubrick ends and the Spielberg begins, but the last half hour of the film is mired in clunky exposition, trying to explain ideas that would have been far better left to the imagination of the audience.   Somebody needed to step in and tell Spielberg that the story needed to end with David underwater.  If anything, a simple shot of his eyes blinking upon his reawakening would have allowed for much better ambiguous wonder.

    I believe that Kubrick would have edited the film into chapters of time, fashioning a much different film from the screenplay.  If anything, I’m confident that Kubrick would have got the ending right.

    Finally, it’s nice to know that Ridley Scott probably gets the last word on his films these days.  I’m ready for his return to sci-fi.

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