Fear not, fans of futuristic guns and robot nudity, director Denis Villeneuve recently confirmed that his sequel will retain the same dystopian, dark, R-rated aesthetic of director Ridley Scott’s 1982 original film.
Not much is known about the highly anticipated sequel Blade Runner 2049 besides the fact that Harrison Ford will reprise his role as former blade runner Rick Deckard and a new future-noir cop named Officer K, played by Ryan Gosling, is out looking for him. The first teaser trailer for the film was heavy on mood and a little light on the violence, and that’s about it.
Villeneuve talked to Screen Daily about the new film, which wrapped production in November and is currently in the post production editing phase, and confirmed the films adult-oriented rating, saying, “My producers are finding it fun to remind me that it will be one of the most expensive R-rated independent feature films ever made.” (For a little context: The film will be distributed by big time Hollywood studio Warner Bros., but it’s produced by Alcon Entertainment, hence why Villeneuve is joking about his movie being indie.)
The huge $780 million-sized success of R-rated superhero curveball Deadpool might have something to do with Warner giving the gritty go-ahead to Villeneuve’s sequel, but there are other factors at work here. The somber but still somewhat bloody original movie was rated R in an era when there was no PG-13 rating to speak of, and Villeneuve is no rated-R newcomer. His previous films like Sicario, Enemy, and Prisoners were all R, though his latest and most financially successful film, Arrival, was rated PG-13.
Maybe Villeneuve just wants to match O.G. Blade Runner dude Ridley Scott’s savage sci-fi street cred. Scott’s upcoming franchise sequel, Alien: Covenant, will also be rated R. If anything, fans won’t have to worry about the potential for a PG-13 rating to defang the long-awaited Blade Runner follow-up.
The movie is scheduled to hit theaters on October 6, 2017.