June 21, 2017
Behind-the-scenes

DP Roger Deakins Reveals 'Blade Runner 2049' Tech Challenges in Jaw-Dropping New Featurette

blade runner 2049
Revered cinematographer Roger Deakins has 'never worked on a film with so many different sets and lighting challenges' as 'Blade Runner 2049.'

We put Blade Runner 2049 in the number one slot of our most anticipated films this year and now—on the eve of the original film’s 35th release anniversary—our hunger is slightly abated with a stunning new behind-the-scenes featurette (below).

Denis Villeneuve’s sequel to Ridley Scott’s 1982 original film looks to be a jaw-dropping mix of visual feats that stay true to both the story and the technical innovation that made Blade Runner an instant classic. Villeneuve acknowledges this legacy, stating “I have massive respect for the world Ridley created. Blade Runner revolutionized the way we see science fiction.”

Villeneuve is likely the right man for the job, as he took science fiction down an entirely new road himself, ostensibly reinventing the hackneyed alien genre with 2016’s Arrival, for which he was nominated for an Academy Award in Directing. Even Ridley Scott himself is fully on board as Executive Producer of the film that reboots his classic.

 

Blade Runner 2049 indeed brings several heavy-hitters to the table to help ensure its success, including no less of a cinematographer than multiple Oscar-nominated Roger Deakins, who also shot for Villeneuve on 2015’s Sicario. No stranger to complex action movies (the James Bond hit Skyfall, for one), Deakins admits in the featurette, "I've never worked on a film with so many different sets and lighting challenges. Technically, it's quite challenging."

Of course, fans of the original are most excited to see how a now-wizened Harrison Ford reprises his role in the film. “It was a pleasure getting back to the world of Blade Runner,” Ford said.

We look forward to seeing you there, Rick Deckard.      

Your Comment

13 Comments

DSLR at 2:30...Canon 1d? For miniatures, interesting.

Does anyone know what technique drove that choice? They seem to be using Alexa's everywhere else.

June 21, 2017 at 3:27PM, Edited June 21, 3:32PM

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They are using the Canon on a motion control system to shoot a miniature. Look closely at what it is shooting; you can even see the edge of the table the model landscape is sitting on.

Not that many years ago that would have been a Fries modified Mitchell film camera weighing about 60 lbs shooting film.

June 21, 2017 at 8:23PM, Edited June 21, 8:24PM

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Yeah it seems odd they didn't go with the Mini to match everything else...

June 21, 2017 at 10:42PM

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Kenneth Merrill
Director
1143

They probably wanted more resolution than the Mini offers to match the Arri 65 footage.

June 22, 2017 at 11:41AM

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It hasn't been shot on Alexa 65. It's shot on Alexa XT...

June 27, 2017 at 8:48PM

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Oscar Stegland
DP/Steadicam
911

My understanding is SLRs are very common for miniatures using motion control and/or stop motion. Lots of tools support canon DSLRs primarily for automating precise capture. And effects shots really benefit from the extra resolution. Also still cameras are used for VFX such as capturing mirror balls etc. Many reasons to have DSLRs on set on such a movie.

June 24, 2017 at 1:11AM, Edited June 24, 1:14AM

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Noah Yuan-Vogel
Cinematographer
94

I asked him directly and Roger said this camera was purely for reference only.

June 24, 2017 at 6:21AM, Edited June 24, 6:21AM

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Aaron Lochert
Director of Photography
174

I would imagine that the 1dx is fire:ing stills, not video, and than its stils combined to a movie sequence afterwords. RAW files, in a light and small camera package? :)

June 21, 2017 at 5:02PM, Edited June 21, 5:03PM

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Nice one! This is fairly plausible.

June 21, 2017 at 10:43PM

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Kenneth Merrill
Director
1143

That would be kind of fitting, beings that Douglas Trumbull shot a lot of the miniatures for the original at very low frame rates. It was basically like motion-controlled timelapse shots.

June 22, 2017 at 3:17AM

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Totally, I remember that the mine sequence in Temple of Doom was shot on an adapted Nikon at 9 frames a second so they could mount the camera on the rails for POVs within the scaled down set. The resolution on the Canon is going to be well outside the parameters for what they need in stills mode.

July 29, 2017 at 11:36AM

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Jonathon Sendall
Stories
1443

The original Balde
Runner left such a stunning mark in my life. I can't wait to see this new masterpiece. An amazing crew at work. BRAVO!

June 24, 2017 at 11:16AM, Edited June 24, 11:36AM

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Ralph King
Director Cameraman
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Where is the "reveal"? Your headline is extremely misleading and click bate. There was what, one line from Roger in that video?

October 6, 2017 at 8:18AM, Edited October 6, 8:18AM

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Devin Bousquet
Director-DP-Editor
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