Once upon a time, Blade Runner 2049 director Denis Villeneuve wanted a man with “rock star qualities” to play Niander Wallace, the villain of the piece. And so of course, he thought of a literal rock star: David Bowie.
Sadly, Bowie’s death in early 2016 forced Villeneuve to look for alternatives. Here’s what he said in a recent interview with Metro:
“Our first thought [for the character] had been David Bowie, who had influenced Blade Runner in many ways. ‘When we learned the sad news, we looked around for someone like that.”
When we think of the late Bowie and the characters he played on the big screen – like real-life inventor Nikola Tesla in The Prestige and the Goblin King in Labyrinth – it makes perfect sense.
He would have brought an ethereal, dreamlike quality to a fantastical project, and his stature alone would have elevated the movie.
Instead, Wallace is being played by Jared Leto. Can’t win them all, I suppose.
Blade Runner 2049 opens in Singapore this Thursday, October 5.