watch a trailer for wes anderson's film on the eccentric writer behind 'blade runner'
'Escapades' promises an intriguing look into the life of a runaway flamenco dancer who forced his way into Hollywood.
Blade Runner's depiction of decaying, replicant-infested 2019 Los Angeles doesn't seem as though it would appeal to Wes Anderson. But the whimsical Isle of Dogs director is understandably fascinated by the guy who wrote the screenplay for Ridley Scott's 1982 sci-fi, and for its upcoming sequel. So much so that Anderson is executive-producing a documentary on Hampton Fancher, who dropped out of school at 11 and ran away to Spain to become a flamenco dancer named Mario Montejo, before returning to the United States to break into Hollywood as an actor. Escapes is directed by Michael Almereyda of William Eggleston in the Real World and Marjorie Prime, a Black Mirror-esque sci-fi starring Jon Hamm as a deceased hologram husband.
Though Fancher is relatively unknown to today's audiences, he enjoyed a pretty illustrious acting career before teaming up with Ridley Scott to interpret Philip K. Dick's Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?. Many of his film roles were in Westerns, including Black Saddle, Stagecoach West, and Have Gun, Will Travel. Fancher's screenwriting career, while not exactly extensive, was rather eclectic. After Blade Runner he wrote the Denzel Washington-starring murder musical comedy The Mighty Quinn and the tragicomic serial killer movie The Minus Man, starring Anderson cohort Owen Wilson. In a 1999 New York Times recap of a post-screening party for The Minus Man, Susan M. Kirschbaum described Fancher waiting at the bar for Anderson to arrive. ''He's the J. D. Salinger of film," Fancher said of the then-30-year-old Rushmore director, who later ordered a flank steak and raved about Rosemary's Baby.
One person not so intrigued about Fancher's colorful life is Fancher. "Actually the story is so terrible I'm not going to tell it," he tells the camera in the trailer for Escapes. The narration is spliced with vintage black-and-white photos of Fancher's romantic and professional escapades. Look out for Escapades when it gets a theatrical release in August, three months before Blade Runner 2049 finally hits screens in October.
Text Hannah Ongley
Image via YouTube