The Original Ending Of Blade Runner Involved A Cryogenically Frozen Tyrell

Besides maybe "Apocalypse Now," there are very few films with such a well-known and documented history of alternate versions as "Blade Runner." Directed by Ridley Scott, the theatrical version released in 1982 was nothing like the director had wanted, complete with a "happy ending" that didn't flow with the rest of the film. The poorly named Director's Cut, made ten years later in 1992, also didn't have Scott's blessing or much of his involvement. Finally, in the "Final Cut" in 2007, the director could tell the story he wanted of Deckard and his intense and existential experience with rogue replicants. 

Plenty of scenes were removed or added in all these versions of the film. However, there are still deleted scenes and scrapped concepts that have yet to be seen.  One such scene that's not in any version of "Blade Runner" that's been released is an alternate take on a crucial moment between Rutger Hauer's character Roy Batty and Eldon Tyrell, portrayed by Joe Turkel. While the various cuts of "Blade Runner" all depict the same fate of Tyrell at the hands of his creation Roy Batty, makeup effects legend Tom Savini had a conversation with Hauer that revealed an alternate version of the scene with not one, but two Tyrell's.

Confronting the wrong Tyrell

/Film recently had the opportunity to sit down and talk with Tom Savini, and the makeup effects artist who worked on projects such as "Dawn of the Dead" and "Knightriders" spoke about a conversation with Rutger Hauer that revealed a stunning alternate ending to Roy Batty's encounter with his creator:

"I remember sitting around with Rutger Hauer just talking, and he told me about 'Blade Runner.' The ending of 'Blade Runner' is not what you see in the movie. When he goes to the Tyrell Corporation and kills Tyrell, he puts his thumbs in his eyeballs... that's not Tyrell. The real Tyrell is upstairs in a cryogenically frozen container with a special tattoo on his forehead. He was bald with a tattoo on his forehead, and Rutger wanted that tattoo in [made-for-TV movie] "Mr. Stitch," which we did. But in 'Blade Runner,' he sees Tyrell frozen, which was not in the movie. You're led to believe that Joe Turkel was Tyrell, but he wasn't. So it was fun hanging out with Rutger Hauer."

Roy Batty and his group of replicants are after Tyrell throughout the runtime of "Blade Runner," hoping that the one who created them would also find a way to extend their lives. In a scene that feels like a futuristic retelling of "Frankenstein," Batty finally confronts his maker, questioning the one flaw that keeps him from living longer. The idea of Batty discovering that the Tyrell he killed was a replicant itself and the real Tyrell was frozen feels like one twist too many in a film already filled with them. Moreover, Batty's cathartic experience of killing the man who brought him so much pain is robbed with this twist. Thankfully, in the end, this was just Hauer sharing an interesting anecdote with Savini about one of possibly many "Blade Runner" scenes that could have been.