Thirty years ago, moody sci-fi film Blade Runner hit theaters, with Harrison Ford and Sean Young as the stars of a robot-human tale set in a dystiopain futuristic Los Angeles. The story, loosely based on the Philip K. Dick novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, will soon get a sequel, director Ridley Scott says. And the star will be a woman.
In an interview with The Daily Beast, Scott, who also directed Alien, is asked why he is drawn to strong female protagonists:
I'm used to very strong women because my mother was particularly strong, and my father was away all the time. My mother was a big part of bringing up three boys, so I was fully versed in the strength of a powerful woman, and accepted that as the status quo. I think there are a lot of men who feel they're being emasculated by having the woman be in charge; I've never had that problem. All the relationships in my life have been with strong women, from childhood. The relationship I've had in my life for the past 30 years is with a very strong Costa Rican woman. Oddly enough, I find it quite engaging to be working with a female when I'm directing. It's kind of interesting.
Don't forget, Scott also directed Thelma and Louise and GI Jane. He continues:
The evolution of taking the side of the woman, as far as my career's concerned, is epitomized by Thelma & Louise. The budget was very slender-about $15 million-because nobody wanted to make it. I first came on as producer, and I was selling the notion to four or five male directors-this was made over 20 years ago, so there weren't many female directors to do it-that the movie should be an epic about two women on their journey for freedom. One director who turned me down said, "I've got a problem with the women," and I said, "Well you're meant to, you dope!" So I thought that I should direct it myself.
We often talk about what makes a great female action hero — as well as what makes a shitty one — but when it comes right down to it, part of what it takes is the vision to see a character as more that just gender. Scott talks about Texas Chainsaw Massacre, noting how there is a female character left at the end, covered in blood, but, "she'd survived rather than won." As for Alien: "The difference with Ripley was that she had won and survived."