Rutger Hauer, Star Of ‘Blade Runner’ And Video Games, Dies At 75

Dutch actor Ruger Hauer has died at the age of 75, following a short, unspecified illness. Variety confirmed that the actor had passed on Friday, July 19, and that his funeral was held on Wednesday, July 24.

Best known for his role as Roy Batty in 1982’s Blade Runner, Hauer starred in a wealth of movies, both blockbuster of scale and smaller, independent productions garnering cult praise. His higher-profile appearances included 1985’s Ladyhawke, the 1992 movie version of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, 2005’s Sin City and Batman Begins, and the 2011 black comedy Hobo with a Shotgun.

Hauer’s first English-speaking role had been as Blane van Niekerk in 1975’s The Wilby Conspiracy, alongside Michael Caine and Sidney Poitier. And at the time of his death he has three movies yet to be released, which will now come out posthumously: Viy 2: Journey to China, Emperor, and Break.

As well as his credits in movies and TV shows and made-for-TV films – Hauer enjoyed a short spell in True Blood, and received Golden Globe nominations for his work in 1994’s Fatherland and 1987’s Escape From Sobibor – he also starred in two video games.

In 2019’s Kingdom Hearts III, he voiced Master Xehanort, who’s kind of a big deal amongst that franchise’s baddest-of-the-bad guys. And in 2017, he starred as detective Daniel Lazarski in Bloober Team’s cyberpunk psychological horror, Observer. I relatively recently played it on Switch and let me tell you: goosebumps are guaranteed. A film adaptation of Observer was announced in 2017 – but sadly, Hauer won’t see that project come to fruition.

For all of Hauer’s work across film, television and video games, though, there’s no doubt that it’s the replicant Roy Batty who most people associate him with – especially his Blade Runner-climaxing “tears in rain” passage. That’s how he’ll be remembered: with the most memorable lines from an all-time cinema classic.

Hauer is survived by his wife, Ineke ten Cate, and his daughter, the actress Aysha Hauer, from a previous marriage.

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Written by Alan Smith

Alan Smith

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