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'Blade Runner' Served Up in 'The Final Cut'

26 Jul, 2007 By: Billy Gil

Perhaps director Ridley Scott is best known for his blockbusters (Black Hawk Down, Gladiator, Alien), but none of his films have inspired the fandom and critical analysis as 1982's Blade Runner.

Warner Home Video has responded to Blade Runner's enduring popularity 25 years after its box office run by releasing different cuts of the film in various sets Dec. 18: a two-disc special edition ($20.97), a four-disc collector's edition ($34.99) and a five-disc ultimate collector's edition packaged in a limited-edition Deckard Briefcase ($78.92).

The studio will release the five-disc edition on both high-definition formats, albeit in limited quantities. No prices have been announced for the HD DVD and Blu-ray Disc versions. Prebook for all versions is Nov. 13.

The two-disc set will have the final cut and feature-length documentary “Dangerous Days: Making Blade Runner.

The four-disc set will have everything on the two-disc set, plus the 1982 theatrical version (which included a character narration many felt was extraneous to the film), the 1982 international cut (which has some extended scenes from the theatrical cut), the 1992 director's cut (which cut the narration and tidy ending) and interviews, featurettes, deleted scenes, art and stills.

The five-disc set adds the “workprint version,” a cut with several lines and scenes that have since taken on a near-mythical status among fans. This version will have commentary from Paul M. Sammon, author of Future Noir: The Making of Blade Runner, and the featurette “All Our Variant Futures: From Workprint to Final Cut.”

The final cut is restored and remastered with added and extended scenes, new versions of key lines, cleaner special effects, 5.1 Dolby Digital audio and three commentaries, including one with Scott. It features the edits made to the director's cut, including the elimination of a happy ending.

“[The final cut is] a step toward what it was as a release print,” Scott said. “It's a film noir, it should have ended with the elevator doors closing.”

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