Alcon Entertainment’s much-buzzed about new sci-fi project set in the Blade Runner universe – with director Ridley Scott onboard to captain the cinematic ship – has prompted a lot speculation, especially when it comes to the potential involvement (or lack thereof) of the original 1982 film’s star, Harrison Ford.

Even though Scott says the film is probably going to be a sequel of sorts, he’s also implied the project won’t be featuring any member of the original Blade Runner acting crew, including Ford. Producers Broderick Johnson and Andrew Kosove have echoed that statement, insisting this new movie is “a total reinvention” of the property, in terms of both narrative substance and casting.

Twitch, however, is now reporting that Ford has “entered into early talks” to join Scott’s second installment in the Blade Runner (would-be) franchise. While the site admits that the negotiations are very much preliminary and may not actually follow through, the mere proposal that Ford could be in line to reprise his role as former replicant bounty hunter Rick Deckard seems to imply this new film may not be a complete “reboot” after all.

Despite the previous denials by Scott and Alcon heads that Ford will figure into this new sci-fi venture, fans have been debating the legendary Hollywood action hero’s potential involvement for a while now. That’s in part due to the implications surrounding the return of Ford as the Deckard character, in a story that would have to be set decades after the original Blade Runner (to account for the actor’s aging).

To this day, film geeks are still debating whether or not Deckard is a human or, unwittingly, a replicant himself. The ambiguity surrounding that issue, as it is presented in Blade Runner – combined with contradictory claims made by people like Ford and Scott, over the years – has only kept the discussion alive and well, fueling folks on both sides of the debate to remain adamant about their position.

In other words, if Ford does reprise his role as Deckard in this new installment, that particular argument should at long last be settled. Of course, this is all assuming that the actor (who turns 70 this year) is in talks to bring that specific character back to cinematic life. For all we know right now, Ford could be in talks to simply make a cameo appearance in the new Blade Runner flick, as a shout-out to die-hard fans.

UPDATE: Kosove has now released the following statement on the matter (via Deadline):

“It is absolutely patently false that there has been any discussion about Harrison Ford being in ‘Blade Runner’. To be clear, what we are trying to do with Ridley now is go through the painstaking process of trying to break the back of the story, figure out the direction we’re going to take the movie and find a writer to work on it. The casting of the movie could not be further from our minds at this moment.”

Harrison Ford and Ridley Scott on the original 'Blade Runner' set

Many moviegoers are waiting to see how Scott’s first return trip to a cinematic sci-fi universe he pioneered (ie. the Alien universe, in this summer’s Prometheus) turns out before they get either too excited or too pessimistic about the potential of a new Blade Runner flick. Should Prometheus turn out as well as many are hoping (or vice versa), it should only heighten (or reduce) interest in Scott’s next foray into the genre.

The dramatic metamorphosis that Prometheus underwent during pre-production is also reason enough to be skeptical about any preliminary tidbits (even in terms of casting) concerning this Blade Runner project. Things are clearly being shaped, so it’s best to not assume anything is set in stone just yet.

Scott’s continued habit of attaching himself to multiple films likewise casts doubt on the new Blade Runner film’s ability to make the 2014 release date that Johnson and Kosove previously suggested was on the table. So, again, best to just wait for more official information to be released about the project, before jumping to conclusions about what it is, who’s in it, AND when it will be released.

Source: Twitch

Update Source: Deadline