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• A KODAK MOMENT - RACHAEL'S CHILDHOOD PHOTO
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Replicant 13
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 26, 2014 9:08 pm    Post subject: • A KODAK MOMENT - RACHAEL'S CHILDHOOD PHOTO Reply with quote

PICTURE PERFECT?


Having determined the location of Rick and Iran Deckard's house, I hope to determine at least some of the details behind the "animated" photo that was used to augment Rachael's invented past.

BEEN THERE. DONE THAT.
From background suggested by the movie and the book (DADOES) we know the photo represented Rachael's false past - the photo was supposedly of Eldon Tyrell's niece from whom Rachael's memories originated. Granted to some this search may be a tired subject and no doubt attempted elsewhere in the past. And finding this information could be much more difficult than determining the Deckard House, but someone out there has the answers. Of THAT, I have no doubt.

MOTHER & DAUGHTER
Back in the eighties film credits were much shorter than today, but even now there are those in minor roles that are not listed, and so, lost to history. Only the actor or their agent might know, especially after the years since "Blade Runner" flopped at the box office. Nonetheless, it would be interesting to some to know who was cast as the mother and daughter in the picture, and possibly where the photo was taken.

THE ROSEN PORCH
As suggested in my Deckard House thread, the location could quite easily be lost to us now. And like the Deckard House, it makes sense that it was a structure on Warner's backlot, but so much has changed over the decades, and with the destruction or updating of certain structures (the entire Laramie Western Set was demolished in 2003) it could be lost. What appears to be little more than a shallow porch with a simple front door, might have been part of the Laramie Set.

OVERCOMING PAST EFFORTS
There have been many copies of the two photos sold or circulated online, but these are usually less than complete, taken from screen captures of the DVD or Blu-Ray, then modified to correct the distortion and complete those areas that are missing.

I know, it's doubtful that those who might have the answers will respond here. And for the record, Tom Southwell has offered what knowledge he has, but he was not involved in these particular props and knows little of how they were produced. As he offered, obviously the animated image of Sarah/Rachael and her mom was composited into a shot of the hand holding a keyed polaroid, but little more appears to be known. As with Kubrick's daughter appearing briefly as Heywood Floyd's daughter in "2001: A Space Odyssey", the two actresses could have been anyone.

Tom did suggest that some of the work was done by Dream Quest who handled some of the motion imagery for BR. However, a quick search of the internet revealed that Dream Quest Images was acquired by Disney in 1996, was merged into Secret Labs in 1999 and after completing only one picture, "Dinosaur", was disbanded. So, not knowing who there might have been involved, that becomes another derailed lead, with time working against finding any answers.

THE BR CLOCK IS TICKING
As we approach 2019, my hope is that someone here might know someone else who, giving it some thought, might know someone still "around" to contact or could make an educated guess. It's a long shot after all this time, but better now than in another 5 years.

Perhaps the best bet would be the young girl who appears as Sarah/Rachael in the photo. She could be in her mid-40's by now . . .

Any help out there?

HAB1! - R13
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joberg
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 27, 2014 6:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, knowing Ridley's reputation for details, he either:
Look at 20 different locations (in the back lots or outside of the back lots)

1) Took the pic(s) himself
2) Let the DP take the pic(s) and then chose the right one.

I'm sure some of these details were done way before principal photography had begun...specially "animating" the pic would've taken, again, the o.k. from SRS as for the final product.

Love that pic with Rachael holding the pic Dave

Cool
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 27, 2014 7:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Do you have "Future Noir"? There is a bit in there about it. Let me know if you don't and I can type it here.

It's more than likely that the physical photo was a "grab" and print of the filmed sequence.
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 27, 2014 8:25 pm    Post subject: PAST NOIR Reply with quote

Thanks, all -

I would guess it was something devised as the production unfolded. With so much going on - so many changes to the script and pressure building on the set - if it was something Ridley wanted to add, he probably turned it over to a second unit, doing incidentals, close-ups and EFX. Hence Tom's suggestion that a separate group may have handled it.

Thanks Nexus. It probably was a still shot, with the footage keyed into the photo.

And yes, I do have a rather well-worn copy of Sammon's 'FUTURE NOIR' and have read and studied it over the years, but I didn't recall there being much mentioned about this prop - at least not in detail, but perhaps I missed something. Smile

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 28, 2014 8:14 am    Post subject: NO "REAL" ANSWER Reply with quote


So far, in checking "FUTURE NOIR" I found two entries regarding Rachael's photo. The first is in Chapter 8, under the heading of DECKARD'S APARTMENT, starting at the bottom of page 137. The photo is only briefly mentioned in a description of the applied effect, followed by a quote on page 138 from an interview Ridley had with Phil Edwards and Alan McKenzie for STARBURST Magazine No. 51 (1982). But in this Ridley only speaks to his reasoning behind its use - as an enhancement of Deckard's thought process at that moment, as he begins to question just what is "real".

Nothing is said of the actual shoot, or those involved.

Later on page 255 under the same heading, but in Chapter 10 on Special Effects, Terry Rawlings comments on how the effect was achieved, verifying it was indeed shot on the backlot at Warner, using two extras as mother and daughter. Aside from a further comment that the post work was done by Peter Govey in London, there is no further detail or any mention of the extras or the exact location.

This seems to verify two things - Any minor support photography in California was shot on the backlot and the two extras were probably unrelated in any way to the rest of the production. They were just extras, making it rather impossible to determine their identities beyond a guess or luck.

Still, someone must know.

But, is there yet another comment elsewhere in "NOIR" that I have overlooked(?)

- R13
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Nexus7
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 28, 2014 10:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nope. Those 2 that you mentioned were exactly the ones that I remember from the book.(especially the page 255 one)

Keep at it! I'm enjoying your sleuthing! Smile
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 28, 2014 6:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

TFS with us Dave...good snooping around Wink love when someone turns all the stones; it just that sometimes, the stones are too heavy Crying or Very sad
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Replicant 13
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 28, 2014 8:08 pm    Post subject: THE GAME IS AFOOT Reply with quote

Feel free to sleuth as well. There's always a chance I will overlook a detail or an angle that might lead more directly to an answer.

- R13
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 29, 2014 6:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Do a Google satellite view of the studio back lot would offer any other clues?
I know that we cannot go back to 1982...
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 01, 2014 8:38 am    Post subject: THE HAYSTACK OF HISTORY Reply with quote

Continuing the search, there are countless possibilities at this point. As with the house used for the photo of the Deckards, it is not only a search for location, but a search through time.

For now, my focus is a bit blurred. There seem to be no candidates among the more obvious locations and sets on the Warner Backlots. Of those more accessible for viewing online, I've found no clear match, and the photo of Rachael (Sarah) and her mom shows so little of the porch that it is impossible to identify the overall structure. It could be a front porch of a smaller house set, a side or back entry or even part of some western storefront, dressed with contemporary props (the captains chair, the various potted plants, etc.)

CHANGE AND MORE CHANGE
In the search I have seen a few possibilities - but with most of the potential discoveries, further investigation proves that each usually can be discarded when some basic structural difference is revealed. Even then, structures are changed - the demands of a new production, various studio fires and other changes have altered many structures beyond recognition.

There are numerous backlot locations in use throughout the past 34 years that could have been utilized. I still think a location on what was Warner's "Laramie Street" might have served the purpose. When it still existed, the set backed up to Midwest Street "King's Row" where the Deckards' house is located. At times, both sets were used during the filming of Westerns, with the Church doubling as a schoolhouse.

While unlikely due to its barren appearance overall, I still wonder if some spot within the Laramie Set was used. In 1981, around the time Blade Runner was in production, James Garner returned to the location to film what became only a one-year return as "Bret Maverick". Due to its age and structural problems the set was revived and rebuilt for that short-lived series, with significant additions and changes, so perhaps it remains a candidate.


Laramie Street in 1993. With fewer Westerns being filmed and remote locations preferred, by this time the set was
used for smaller productions and as shown here, as a special events location.


- R13
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 01, 2014 9:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The answer is somewhere out there ...our best bet, as I said from the beginning would be from H.Ford Wink
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Bwood
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 01, 2014 11:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Then there's this picture which begs the question, was the hand holding the photo added?

http://propsummit.com/upload/696/brpolaroid3(1).jpg

http://propsummit.com/upload/696/rachaelwithpic_lg.jpg


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 01, 2014 12:33 pm    Post subject: OFF SUBJECT Reply with quote

DOUBLE VISION

This thread is referencing the smaller one that she's holding.

But which photo - You've linked two of the same image? ..

- R13
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 01, 2014 1:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Apologies. Corrected..
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 01, 2014 1:52 pm    Post subject: CLARIFICATION Reply with quote

No problem. The image was meant merely as an ice-breaker for the main subject of this thread. It was not intended to cloud the BR universe or in any way disrespect the subject/image.

But now, back to the main focus - Rachael's (Porch) Photo.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 01, 2014 2:18 pm    Post subject: THE MATCH GAME Reply with quote

There are a few houses on the backlot that come close, but on further scrutiny, don't pass the test - at least as they appear today.

FOR EXAMPLE -



While this house is similar - simpler, with the single front door, a window on the right, only a couple of steps - there are obvious differences. Some could be attributed to changes made over the years, but the question of proof arises. This porch could pass, but like so many others, the differences become obvious - the posts are plain and a bit too far apart, the porch and steps are more substantial (Rachael's photo shows simple wooden construction), shutters on the windows and there's a porch railing, but no tree out front to cast those moving shadows.

- R13
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 02, 2014 7:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

While the "Deckard's house" is pretty much agreed upon, I sense that the Rachael one will be a dead end... Confused Maybe I'm too pessimistic Wink
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 02, 2014 7:47 pm    Post subject: FAITH, HOPE & CHARITY Reply with quote

At this late date, even if the location still exists and is found, I fear you may be right, if only in the fact that the structure may be unrecognizable. Without someone to verify it's involvement, it can only be a guess, but I am hopeful (even optimistic) that eventually someone who knows may respond.

I am actually almost more interested at this point in possibly identifying the players. Perhaps there is some documentation that still exists, listing the extras involved in BR. With luck we might even find our Mrs. Deckard . . .



After all, I would never have guessed that Mr. Southwell would surface here - and then be so generous with his comments, answers and files. We all gained a great deal of information from him that probably never would have been discovered any other way.

Persistence and patience. And a bit of faith.

Perhaps there is someone here who has a connection at SAG. Maybe their records go back to '81(?)

Anyone? Anyone? . . . Bueller?

HAB1! - R13
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 03, 2014 12:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Working on it…
http://www.gavinrothery.com/my-blog/2011/12/27/nice-to-meet-you-mrs-deckard.html
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 03, 2014 2:27 pm    Post subject: GOOD CONNECTION Reply with quote

Glad you added this to the thread. It's an interesting connection. I was already aware of this site and the suggestion that the woman who played Deckard's wife ('Iran' - if you go by the novel) was seen in the taxi. They do look similar.

I am aware of Mr. Rothery's credentials, with his work on "Moon" with Duncan Jones (himself a professed "Blade Runner" fan, whose interest had driven him to approach a 'Runner' film of his own, after "Moon" was completed). With his connections, I might assume his source in correct, but I've found nothing elsewhere to verify this - online, here on Propsummit, or in "FUTURE NOIR". I hope to find a recognizable source with verifiable proof.

- - - - -

As to the actress. she may or may not have been the same actress, or character. Even if originally shot as Iran, with all the changes to the script, in the 1982 version, she may not have been included as anyone other than extra at that point - just someone on the streets of LA, startled by the scene unfolding outside her taxi's window . . . But who was the actress cast?

At the time "Blade Runner" was released, video players were barely on the market, and while expensive, the earliest ones did a poor job of freeze-framing ( I remember. In late 1983 I had my first player and "Blade Runner" was one of the first movies released on VHS.) And the early transfers were very dark.



Since that framed photo of Deckard's wife was virtually hidden to the audience - seen very briefly in the clutter upon his piano - I can't think it was intended that anyone could make that connection from the 1882 theatrical version. It was years before Sammon's book came out and before better technology made it more visually accessible.

Nevertheless, his source might be correct. The actress could well have been shot while some part of her story was still intact, and inserted, hoping that the audience might eventually figure it out. But this information comes from a second-generation source whose real identity remains unknown - a Twitter friend who goes by @PiranhaVonBosch. It would be interesting to know the actual source . . .

- R13
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