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Blade Runner DVD news

Sci Fi Wire points us to the Official Website of Joanna Cassidy, which contains this puzzling statement regarding the upcoming specail edition DVD release of BLADE RUNNER:

Joanna has just finished re-shooting her scenes from the original BLADE RUNNER movie. Joanna is wearing her original outfit (which she kept over from the first production). Thes new scenes will be part of the upcoming special BLADE RUNNER DVD re-reelase….”
Personally, I find it hard to believe that anyone would be re-shooting scenes 25 years later, for obvious reasons, but this cryptic statement seems contradictory, first using the word “re-shooting” (which implies re-enacting old scenes), then referring to “new scenes.”

What’s extra-odd in this particular case is that, for all the talk over the years about what was and wasn’t shot in BLADE RUNNER – and what Ridley Scott did or didn’t want in the Director’s Cut – little if anything has ever been said about Cassidy’s role as the killer replicant snake dancer Zhora.

The only possible thing I can imagine regards the character’s death: as Zhora crashes through several plate glass windows, while being shot in the back by Deckard (Harrison Ford – our hero shoots a woman in the back, how weird is that?), it is pretty clear that a stunt double was used: you get a pretty good look at her face (albeit slightly out of focus due to the intervening glass pane) as she gets up off the ground and keeps running.

Is it possible that Cassidy was called in to run through this bit of action so that she could be digitally inserted over the stunt woman, thus erasing a rather obvious film flub?

Whatever is up with Cassidy’s reshoots, the 1982 theatrical cut of BLADE RUNNER was replaced by the so-called “Director’s Cut” in 1992 . However, the director’s cut was never really what Ridley Scott wanted: he was busy working on his Columbus movie when Warner brothers decided to cash in on some interest generated by a screening of a preview cut in Los Angeles that was considerably different from both the theatrical cut and the “director’s cut.” There is also an unrated “European cut” that was available on VHS, with a few additional moments of gore.

Supposedly, the upcoming special DVD will be a composite of these different versions, containing the famous unicorn shot from the director’s cut, leaving out the narration and the happy ending, and including footage from the preview cut and the European cut. Hopefully, this will, at long last, bring the BLADE RUNNER sage to rest.