This article is about scene 4, “Eye on The City”.
I came across a new cut of “Blade Runner”!
In the process of converting “Blade Runner White Dragon Cut 5” to HD, I’ve been organizing the unused cuts of the film, upscaled to HD resolution, by scene. In this process, I came across an unused cut that I had not noticed the difference between the original version and this one.
This is the unused cut of the scene in the Hades landscape at the beginning of the movie. Can you tell what’s different from the original version?
Yes, the number of spinners flying in front of the screen is different. In the original version, there is one on the left, but in the unused cut, there is another one on the right. I had never noticed this difference before, in spite of this huge difference.
It may have originally been red.
You can see this unused cut in the “Dangerous Days” documentary video.
It might be a work in progress, because the lens flare of spinner’s light has not been composited on the film and the color correction has not been done yet. Also, when I compared this unused cut with the original version, it was exactly the same except for the spinner on the right.
It may have be originally made with two spinners, but the one on the right may have be eventually removed.
In the original script, was there one spinner? Or two?
There was one spinner or two in the original script? I checked the scripts from February 1981 and July 1980. But unfortunately, there was no mention of the number of spinner. Well, in my opinion, as a spinner lover, the more spinners on screen, the better. I decided to use this unused cut for “White Dragon Cut 5”.
However, as I mentioned above, this unused cut is not color adjusted and lens flare is not composited on the film. The image quality is also not good. So I decided to cut out the spinner on the right side of the unused cut with a mask and composite it on the original version. The lens flare was also newly created and composited.
Douglas Trumbull’s uncompromising SFX
Now, I realized that Douglas Trumbull’s SFX are too particular! after doing this compositing work.
The reason is…
- The brightness of the lens flare is stronger or weaker.
I thought the lens flare of the spinner would get brighter as the spinner approached the foreground, but it is brightest 30 frames before the spinner disappears from the screen, and gradually gets darker around that point.
This effect gives the effect that the light of the spinner is momentarily inserted into the lens of the camera.
- At the moment the spinner disappears from the screen, three frames of large lens flare are shown.
At the moment the spinner disappears from the screen, three frames of large vertical flares are shown. This effect gives the effect that the light is reflecting off the camera lens.
I wouldn’t have known that I was so particular if I hadn’t done the compositing of the spinner and lens flare. Those effects give this scene looks so realistic.
In creating the lens flare of the spinner on the right side, which has been newly synthesized into the original version, I have fully reproduced with the above particulars. I hope that I have come as close as possible to Douglas Trumbull’s SFX.
Another rare unused cut
In this edit, I added another unused cut to the second half of this scene. You can see the rooftop of the Tyrell Pyramid in this rare cut.
This footage was also unedited, so I adjusted the colors and added a composite of the Hades landscape in the background.
Unfortunately, the insertion of this cut made the second half of the film redundant. I may re-edit it to make it a bit shorter in the end.
<Scene 4 : Eye on The City>