Even casual science fiction fans will know that Ridley Scott's film "Blade Runner" (often argued as being the best science fiction film ever made) was an adaptation of the Philip K. Dick novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep. What most might not know is that Dick, who was a staunch opponent of any such adaptation, suffered a stroke and was taken off life support 4 months before the movie was released in 1982. Though the author never got a chance to see Scott's final vision for the material, he was able to view a couple special effects sequences from the film 5 months prior to his death. He came away an immediate convert.
Thanks to the great blog Letters of Note, we can all share in his enthusiasm as they have reprinted a letter Dick wrote to the producers of Blade Runner. An excerpt:
"Jeff, after looking --and especially after listening to Harrison Ford discuss the film-- I came to the conclusion that this indeed is not science fiction; it is not fantasy; it is exactly what Harrison said: futurism. The impact of BLADE RUNNER is simply going to be overwhelming, both on the public and on creative people -- and, I believe, on science fiction as a field. Since I have been writing and selling science fiction works for thirty years, this is a matter of some importance to me. In all candor I must say that our field has gradually and steadily been deteriorating for the last few years. Nothing that we have done, individually or collectively, matches BLADE RUNNER. This is not escapism; it is super realism, so gritty and detailed and authentic and goddam convincing that, well, after the segment I found my normal present-day "reality" pallid by comparison."
High praise, indeed. Read the rest of the letter right here.