‘Blade Runner 2049’: How VFX Masters Replicated Sean Young as Rachael

triboro_build03 2.jpeg

One of the great surprises of “Blade Runner 2049” was a stunning CG recreation of the Rachael replicant played by Sean Young in the original movie. The two-minute sequence brings an emotionally stirring reunion with Harrison Ford’s Deckard that required technical virtuosity and subtle performance. This major step in digital human animation should be rewarded with a VFX Oscar nomination.

Body double Loren Peta played the young Rachael (in costume, makeup, and with dotted face) and performed on set with Ford and Jared Leto (as replicant manufacturer Wallace). She was directed by Denis Villeneuve, with Young on set as well for reference. The goal was to merge the two into a perfect replica.