Blade Runner fans rejoice! A new web series based on the futuristic 1982 Harrison Ford sci-fi thriller is set to hit your computer screens this summer. Ridley Scott is developing the project along with his brother Tony, and his son Luke through a new division of their commercial production company RSA Films. London-based independent studio Ag8 is joining them on the project.
In a first time move by a Hollywood studio director, the project will be developed under a Creative Commons License (SA-3), openly allowing fans to re-purpose the content and possibly directly participate in the project.
The series, currently dubbed Purefold will focus on a world two years into Los Angeles’ future (before the original time line of Blade Runner, which was set in 2019). According to the announcement, the series explores the subject of empathy, pulling the central theme of ‘What does it mean to be human?’, Scott’s Blade Runner movie.
The only reported possible snag so far is the fact Scott’s company lacks rights to Philip K. Dick’s Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? the novel upon which the original movie was based. Because of this, none of the actual intellectual property from the movie will be used, opting instead to take inspiration from the film.
“We don’t take any of the canon or copyrighted assets from the movie,” said Ag8’s David Bausola to the New York Times. “It’s actually based on the same themes as Blade Runner. It’s the search for what it means to be human and understanding the notion of empathy. We are inspired by Blade Runner.”
Nonetheless, those who like participatory web television examining the future, get out your web cams and editing equipment. (Just remember to give credit and share alike.)
The partnership extends to powerhouse agencies WPP, Publicis, Aegis Media and Naked Communications, who will be bringing brand clients into the project. There’s also direct involvement from social media aggregator FriendFeed, which will serve as a hub for the “real-time online conversations from the audience.”