Gearbox Software hasn't been shy about picking up the rights to high-profile action films over the years, having signed on to build games based on the likes of James Cameron's Aliens and Michael Mann's Heat. Bringing these games to market has been a different story, however, as the studio officially walked away from Heat and has had an off-again, on-again relationship with Aliens.
Now, it appears as if one more property Gearbox grabbed and tossed was Ridley Scott's acclaimed sci-fi epic Blade Runner. Speaking to the Official PlayStation Magazine, Gearbox CEO Randy Pitchford said that Blade Runner was among a number of IPs that his studio had acquired the rights to. However, due to financial concerns, Pitchford said that Gearbox had abandoned the project.
"Blade Runner was on [the list]," he said. "We had it too and we were like, 'No, we can't.' That game would've cost like $40 million to make and sold about 600,000 units--and that would have been the end of us. There's no rational business model that would have allowed that to make sense. If we'd made it with a business model that did work, it would not have been the Blade Runner game we all would have wanted."
Pitchford went on to note that Gearbox had progressed so far as to consult with Scott on a direction for the game. Based on Philip K. Dick's classic Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, Blade Runner starred Harrison Ford and arrived in theaters in 1982.
As for where Gearbox is finding success with film-to-game adaptations, the studio is prepping Aliens: Colonial Marines for release on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 in early 2012. Gearbox is also investigating whether it wants to bring Colonial Marines to Nintendo's upcoming Wii U.