Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Early Roles Blade Runner Actors Would Probably Like You To Forget About

In 1982, "Blade Runner" changed the face of science fiction filmmaking, delivering a groundbreaking mix of neo-noir, cyberpunk, and crime thriller stylings. Still considered one of the best sci-fi movies of all time, it was directed by filmmaker Ridley Scott, who'd helmed another seminal genre classic, "Alien," just three years earlier. Set in a dystopian future, the film stars Harrison Ford as a law enforcer called a Blade Runner, tasked with hunting down and "retiring" artificial lifeforms called replicants who refuse to go quietly at the end of their lifespan.

Despite the film's critical acclaim and far-reaching legacy, it would take more than 30 years for a sequel to get off the ground. In 2017, Denis Villeneuve stepped into the director's chair and moved the story forward with "Blade Runner: 2049," this time starring a replicant hunter known as Officer K (Ryan Gosling), a synthetic man himself. Between the two films, the "Blade Runner" franchise has made stars out of several newcomers and featured a number of Hollywood heavyweights.

Of course, each star among them has a movie from their early career they'd probably love to put behind them, never to be discussed again. But we won't let anyone forget them so fast. So set your trackers and hop in your spinner because we're hunting down films that "Blade Runner" actors would probably want us to forget about.

Rutger Hauer in A Breed Apart

In "Blade Runner," Rick Deckard is assigned to hunt down the renegade replicant Roy Batty, played by Rutger Hauer. Hauer delivers one of the best performances in the film, with a moving speech at the end that still sends chills down spines today. Later in his career, he starred in a number of hits, including the casts of "Sin City," "The Hitcher," and the cult favorite "Hobo with a Shotgun." While he can be seen in plenty of weird and awful movies too, his earliest head-scratcher is the 1984 action movie "A Breed Apart."

In the film, Hauer plays Jim Malden, a grizzled Vietnam veteran who finds a home on a remote island. He protects the exotic birds who live there and clashes with rock climber Mike Walker (Powers Boothe), who's been hired to steal endangered bald eagle eggs out from under Malden's nose. Now the gun-toting Malden quickly finds himself in an all-out war with Walker's benefactor, wealthy tycoon J.P. Whittier (Donald Pleasence). Yes, that's really the plot of the movie — a Vietnam vet mowing down egg collectors.

Admittedly, the film's animal conservation angle is laudable, but the revenge story about a murderous vigilante out to stop bald eagle egg hunters just doesn't land. Whether that's because the premise is inherently silly, because the action is lackluster, or because it's treated like B-movie schlock with an absurd romance and needless nudity, is up for debate.

Sean Young in Young Doctors in Love

In "Blade Runner," Sean Young portrays Rachael, a replicant who believed she was human thanks to implanted memories. She falls in love with Rick Deckard, and in "Blade Runner 2049" it's revealed that she gave birth to his child. Young was a rising star in the early '80s with a series of roles in major movies, including David Lynch's "Dune," Oliver Stone's "Wall Street," and the Kevin Costner and Gene Hackman thriller "No Way Out." A tumultuous chain of events kept Young from the superstardom she seemed destined for, but she's still made a lot of movies over her long career, including at least one she might look back on with some regret.

Not long after "Blade Runner," Young starred in "Young Doctors in Love," a woefully unfunny comedy that serves as a send-up of medical TV shows and soap operas. Though it was a decent money maker and had a smattering of so-so reviews, most saw it as a failed attempt to copy other similar spoof films of the era. More than one reviewer noted its efforts to ape "Airplane!" without nearly as much cleverness. In the end, it's just a lot of lame jokes on top of an insipid story.

James Hong in Dynamite Brothers

Veteran actor James Hong plays Hannibal Chew in "Blade Runner," the man responsible for the design of replicant eyeballs who's tortured by Roy Batty for information. If you don't know him from "Blade Runner," you might remember Hong from any number of classics, as the actor has more than 450 movie and TV appearances to his name (per IMDb). That includes shows like "Seinfeld" and "Friends," movies like "Chinatown" and "Kung Fu Panda," and more recently, "Everything Everywhere All at Once."

With such a long and legendary career, including both blockbusters and bombs, Hong is clearly the kind of actor who simply loves to act. Would he really regret any role or awful movie from his past? If he does, it might be the 1974 martial arts blaxploitation flick "Dynamite Brothers." A legendarily bad movie led by NFL athlete-turned-actor Timothy Brown (not to be confused with the similarly named football player and actor Jim Brown), it centers on a street-wise fighter named Stud (Brown) who teams up with a kung fu master named Larry (Alan Tang). Together, they set out to find Larry's missing brother and clean up the streets being ravaged by a notorious drug kingpin.

A low-rent cheese-fest, "Dynamite Brothers" clearly wishes it had a bigger budget, Bruce Lee, and Richard Roundtree. Unfortunately, it doesn't even deliver the solid action that fans of the genre come to see.

Hy Pyke in Hack-O-Lantern

With such a unique name as Hy Pyke, you'd think nobody would ever forget him, but the actor is largely unknown today. That's likely owed more to the fact that he has very few prominent credits to his name. If you recognize Pyke from anything, it's probably from his small but important role in "Blade Runner" as Taffey Lewis, owner of the Snake Pit bar. The late actor also appears in the Rudy Ray Moore classic "Dolemite," but for the worst movie of his career, look no further than "Hack-O-Lantern."

A direct-to-video horror flick made on the cheap, "Hack-O-Lantern" sees Pyke in the starring role of a seemingly ordinary grandfather who's revealed to be the mastermind of a Satanic death cult. A weird old man — and not in the satisfying horror movie kind of way — he sends his naive grandson out to perform a murder on Halloween night. Though the movie may be full of gratuitous nudity, it offers up little else that's even memorable.

Perhaps most notable for its catchy glam rock anthem "Devil's Son," the film is a shoe-string budgeted snooze, made a bit more famous recently thanks to being discussed by popular YouTube film critics RedLetterMedia. Boring, awkward, and downright perplexing, "Hack-O-Lantern" might have garnered some fans for its sheer strangeness, but it's nothing anyone will ever call good.

Daryl Hannah in The Final Terror

In addition to the male Nexus-6 replicant (Rutger Hauer) and female Nexus-7 (Sean Young), "Blade Runner" also features the female Nexus-6 Pris, played by Daryl Hannah. Though she may be better known today for films like the Tom Hanks rom-com "Splash," her part in "Blade Runner" is also iconic. In her early days, though, Hannah was far from the bankable star she later became, and she took roles in a few movies she might want us to forget, including the 1983 B-movie slasher "The Final Terror."

The movie reads as a pretty clear attempt to steal dollars from the audience that was running out in droves to films like "Halloween" and "Friday the 13th." However, it proved so awful that the studio couldn't even find anyone to release it, and it sat on a shelf for two years after filming had ended before being released. The story centers on a group of young campers who take a trip out to the California Redwoods and get more than they bargained for. Starting out by telling a cliched slasher story around a campfire, they wind up becoming victims themselves, stalked by a vicious madman who wants them all dead.

The story isn't without its merits. It has a decent twist ending and some interesting themes. It's just so poorly made that Hannah — along with well-known co-stars Joe Pantoliano and Rachel Ward — would all probably prefer it be erased from history.

Dave Bautista in Scorpion King 3

When watershed movies receive belated sequels, it's often a recipe for disaster, but "Blade Runner: 2049" stunned audiences as a surprisingly worthy follow-up. Directed by Denis Villeneuve ("Arrival") and starring Ryan Gosling as a new replicant hunter, its cast also included Dave Bautista, who'd previously impressed as the alien Drax in Marvel's "Guardians of the Galaxy." Once a WWE champ, Bautista had proven himself a star with real acting talent, and "2049" was just the latest in a string of high-profile roles. Looking back, however, the former fighter also has a few parts he might cringe at, chief among them the lackluster threequel "Scorpion King 3: Battle for Redemption."

The series of "Mummy" spin-off films started with "The Scorpion King" in 2002, starring Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, who promptly left the role after just one film. For the sequels, producers seemed to think that more professional fighters were needed to keep the series going, so the second film enlisted UFC legend Randy Couture, and "Battle for Redemption" called on  Bautista, whose only major roles to that point had been in a pair of other B-movies. Despite some fine, well-known actors leading the film like Billy Zane and Ron Perlman, the third "Scorpion King" is a low-budget disaster. The action is weak, and it fails to meet even its modest expectations, feeling more like a rip-off than a genuine sequel.

Lennie James in Lost in Space

Lennie James may be best known to genre audiences for his recurring role in the cast of "The Walking Dead" and its spin-off series "Fear the Walking Dead," in which he plays Morgan. But in "Blade Runner: 2049," he also plays Mister Cotton, who runs an orphanage in the wastelands of San Diego. You may also recall James from the medical drama "Trauma," as Robert Hawkins on the cult series "Jericho," and as Tony Gates in "Line of Duty." But one role you likely don't remember him from — and which he might like to keep that way — is his part as Jeb Walker in the 1998 reboot flop "Lost in Space."

An absolutely unnecessary reimagining of the small-screen classic of the same name, "Lost in Space" tries to turn the quaint 1960s family adventure series into a roller-coaster thrill ride. Led by the likes of William Hurt, Mimi Rogers, Lacey Chabert, and Matt LeBlanc, the film has a surprisingly star-studded cast. But despite the big names and big budget, "Lost in Space" was practically dead on arrival — a mindlessly frenzied, dumb-downed version of a thoughtful sci-fi icon. Punctuated by an inexplicable techno-industrial soundtrack featuring the likes of The Crystal Method and KMFDM, the movie was savaged by critics and might be among the worst reboots of all time.

Ana de Armas in Sex, Party, and Lies

In the future of "Blade Runner: 2049," people can own a DiJi — a digital companion — and Blade Runner K has his very own named Joi, played by Ana de Armas. The film proved a breakout for the young star, who went on to play a lead role in the acclaimed "Knives Out." But before she was a major A-lister, de Armas appeared in a number of smaller films. If there's one she'd like us all to forget about, it's probably the 2009 film "Sex, Party, and Lies."

The movie follows a group of teens. detailing how their lives intersect with sex, parties, and lies. Yes, it's really that simple, and outside of the sensationalist nature of the story, there's really not much going on. There's a brief mystery thrown in, but it's all so aimless, boring, and downright predictable that it all adds up to a whole lot of nothing. Cheap and trashy, the movie makes little use of de Armas' acting skills. The fact that the film's gratuitous on-screen nudity seems only meant to spice up an awful movie makes it that much more cringe-worthy.

Jared Leto in Cool and the Crazy

"Blade Runner: 2049" assembled an all-star cast, and for the role of the film's corporate villain, director Denis Villeneuve looked to controversial method actor Jared Leto. The one-time teen heartthrob who rose to fame in "My So-Called Life" in the 1990s, Leto rose to awards contender in the 2010s. While still a rising star early in his career, he had a few awkward roles in some choice stinkers, but none worse than when he played Michael, a teenage newlywed in the 1994 television movie "The Cool and the Crazy."

The film stars Leto and Alicia Silverstone before either of their respective breakout roles. It's a woefully bad period drama, set in the 1950s, about a pair of 18-year-olds who've just gotten hitched and have a new baby on their hands. Under the pressure of being young parents, they each begin having separate affairs, and before they can regret it, things turn deadly.

The first clue that something's off is that the film was written and directed by Ralph Bakshi, the visionary animator behind such fantasy classics as "Wizards," "Fire and Ice," and "The Lord of the Rings." Coming in 1994, just two years after his half-animated flop "Cool World," a 1950s teen drama seems like an odd choice for the animated fantasy filmmaker. Ultimately, the movie is poorly written, badly acted, and feels far below the talent levels of everyone involved.

Mackenzie Davis in Plato's Reality Machine

Mackenzie Davis was starring in the critically acclaimed drama series "Halt and Catch Fire" when she was cast in "Blade Runner: 2049." In the film, she plays Nexus-8 replicant Mariette, later going on to memorable turns in "Terminator: Dark Fate" and the HBO miniseries "Station Eleven," among others. But before she was even a rising star, Davis appeared in a bizarre cyberpunk romantic thriller that she'd likely prefer we all forgot: "Plato's Reality Machine."

A series of interconnected stories revolving around six New York singles, the film mostly focuses on a man named Charles who's obsessed with virtual gaming. He meets a digital woman named Sophia (Davis), and the rest is far too mind-numbingly dull to explain. Maybe it was attempting to be an arthouse indie drama, or perhaps it was trying to capitalize on the success of "Ready Player One," then a recently-released hit novel. Whatever it is, it's terrible. Beyond its cheapness — looking like a homemade high school film project — the acting is below amateur level, and the visual effects that represent the virtual game in the story are even worse. 

Somehow, the film managed a review in the L.A. Times, but far from a favorable one. A quick watch of the movie's inexplicable trailer should give an idea of just how baffling "Plato's Reality Machine" is. As talented as Davis is, this film doesn't show it.

Ryan Gosling in Frankenstein and Me

Ryan Gosling is one of today's biggest stars, with a repertoire that crosses every genre. He's starred in rom-coms, musicals, action movies, and crime dramas, and gathered all kinds of awards recognition along the way. But early in his career, he also starred in plenty of bad films. Out of them all, the one role he might want us to forget is the 1997 movie "Frankenstein and Me."

You might think Gosling would have no regrets about acting alongside the legendary Burt Reynolds, who gets star billing on the film's poster. But Reynolds isn't really the star here at all, and Gosling has just a small part, making the movie little more than a lame child fantasy very loosely inspired by the Mary Shelley classic. It's really all about a young boy named William whose obsession with horror movies has him reimagining old favorites in his daydreams, with himself in the starring role and his friends — including Gosling — as supporting players. He then encounters a real-life monstrosity at a carnival who he attempts to reanimate just like Frankenstein, and silliness results.

It could have been a light-hearted fanciful kid's movie, but it's just nonsense, and Gosling's embarrassing haircut doesn't help.

Robin Wright in Hollywood Vice Squad

Today, Robin Wright is well known for big-screen classics like "The Princess Bride" and acclaimed TV shows like "House of Cards." She also appears in "Blade Runner: 2049" as Joshi, a member of the LAPD who supervises Ryan Gosling's Officer K. As a star with such an impressive resume, you might think she has no film she'd want to wipe from our collective memory. But alas, there's still her feature film debut in "Hollywood Vice Squad."

Ostensibly a starring vehicle for "Star Wars" alum Carrie Fisher, the film sees the former space princess playing a rookie cop on the beat in Hollywood. She's put on the case when a desperate mother to a missing teen (Wright) comes looking for help, only to find the young girl has fallen deep into the city's criminal element. 

Bordering on exploitation at times, "Hollywood Vice Squad" feels like it was made from a bad TV script. The cast doesn't even seem to be trying, and the movie isn't sure if it wants to be a gritty crime drama or a tongue-in-cheek caper film. Avoid at all costs.

Harrison Ford in The Frisco Kid

The unquestionable star of the "Blade Runner" franchise, Harrison Ford plays the android-chasing cop Rick Deckard in both films. Even before the first movie was released, Ford already had his two most iconic roles under his belt, as rogue pilot Han Solo in "Star Wars" and the whip-wielding relic hunter Indiana Jones in "Raiders of the Lost Ark." He'd add another signature role in "Blade Runner," but one film that he might want us to forget about is the 1978 flop "The Frisco Kid." 

A year before "The Empire Strikes Back," Ford joined the Western buddy comedy alongside Gene Wilder. Perhaps intended as a spiritual successor to Wilder's "Blazing Saddles," this one can't quite measure up. Ford plays the renegade bank robber Tommy Lillard, who reluctantly helps wayward Rabbi Avram Belinksi (Wilder) after he's left for dead by ruthless bandits on a journey to San Francisco. While Ford does what he can in the role of the thief with the heart of gold, and while the film isn't terrible, it's just not the right part for him at all, and his chemistry with Wilder doesn't shine. He may have been cast with the hopes of recapturing the magic of his space cowboy character Han Solo, but there are times in the film when Ford seems like he doesn't even want to be there.