The Original Blade Runner Cast Didn't Really Get The Movie, Here's How They Reacted

Deckard with a gun in Blade Runner

Like it or not, we're living in a world of nostalgia. TV and movie audiences long to go back to a simpler time, and revisit franchises and titles that are near and dear to their heart. As such, we've seen long awaited sequels and reboots, including the highly anticipated Blade Runner 2049. Starring Ryan Gosling as a new protagonist, the upcoming sci-fi adventure will bring Harrison Ford's Rick Deckard back onto the silver screen, hopefully enthralling the film's many fans. But the praise for Blade Runner wasn't always there, in fact, the cast and crew reportedly had an icy reaction to the first screening.

Actor M. Emmet Walsh played Captain Harry Bryant in Blade Runner, and recently spoke to THR about the experience of making the now iconic sci-fi flick. Apparently not even the cast knew what to make of the movie, and sat in silence after seeing an early screener. He said,

We all sat there and it ended. And nothing. We didn't know what to say or to think or do! We didn't know what in the hell we had done! The only one who seemed to get it was Ridley.

Yikes. That's not exactly the reaction you want from those closest to a movie. What I wouldn't give to be a fly on the wall, seeing Ridley Scott's excitement juxtaposed with the cast's confusion.

It's unclear which aspect of Blade Runner left the cast so mystified, but smart money points to the ending. Blade Runner's ambiguous final moments have been dissected and discussed non-stop since its release in 1982, and it doesn't appear to be stopping anytime soon. After believing Harrison Ford's Deckard to be a human, things get a little grey during the ending. As he and leaves with Rachael, Deckard finds a tin foil origami unicorn on his floor. This symbol is a can of worms, questioning whether or not Deckard was a replicant the whole time.

Then again, the cast's gobsmacked reaction could very well be in reference to Blade Runner as a whole. The film is groundbreaking, especially for the time period it was produced. There is plenty of complexity as well, which gives way for moments of pause and reflection after first viewing.

And while M. Emmet Walsh and company might not have known what to make of Blade Runner, the film has gone on to become a staple of American filmmaking. Aside from its massive cult following, Blade Runner was even registered the United States National Film Registry, immortalizing it as a sci-fi legend.

Blade Runner 2049 will arrive in theaters on October 6th, 2017. Be sure to check out our full 2017 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Graduated with degrees theater and literature from Ramapo College of New Jersey. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid. He's particularly proud of covering horror franchises like Scream and Halloween, as well as movie musicals like West Side Story. Favorite interviews include Steven Spielberg, Spike Lee, Jamie Lee Curtis, and more.