Blade Runner star Rutger Hauer has died at the age of 75.
The Dutch actor died at his home in the Netherlands on Friday, July 19, following a short illness.
His funeral was held on Wednesday.
“I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched C-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhäuser Gate. All those moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain…" – Blade Runner (1982)
RIP Rutger Hauer pic.twitter.com/JRlIZhVuRI
— Rotten Tomatoes (@RottenTomatoes) July 24, 2019
As reported by Variety, the news of Hauer’s passing was confirmed by his agent Steve Kenis.
Tributes have poured in over social media, with many praising Hauer’s unique and enigmatic acting style which transcended any material he was given.
Film producer Jonathan Sothcott tweeted:
RIP #RutgerHauer one of cinema’s finest villains. One of those great actors who made rubbish watchable. A real one off.
Actor Josh Gad said:
A very sad goodbye to the great #rutgerhauer #RIP
— JONATHAN SOTHCOTT (@sothcott) July 24, 2019
Goddammit. I recently met #RutgerHauer in Dortmund, Germany. We rode our electric scooters together and I bored him with my fangirling story about doing Roy’s monologue in acting school, much to the confusion of my classmates. I wish I knew him better. RIP pic.twitter.com/ED5YtWLV8H
— Garret Dillahunt (@garretdillahunt) July 24, 2019
— Josh Gad (@joshgad) July 24, 2019
— Adam_Boyd (@adamb0yd) July 24, 2019
Born in in Breukelen, Netherlands, on January 23, 1944, Hauer grew up in Amsterdam, and went to work out at sea at the age of just 15.
He later started at the Academy for Theater and Dance, before being drafted into the Royal Netherlands Army where he served as a combat medic.
With a talent for playing dark and villainous characters, Hauer will perhaps be best remembered for his portrayal of iconic antagonist Roy Batty in Ridley Scott’s sci-fi thriller Blade Runner (1982).
Batty’s ‘tears in the rain’ monologue is among the most memorable in 1980s cinema, with many fans now quoting the following emotional line as a tribute:
All those moments, will be lost in time like tears in rain.
I met #RutgerHauer some years back when we were both on a #BladeRunner panel. He seemed amused and baffled by the idea of an academic book about the movie but he was courteous and kind, and you knew immediately when he’d entered the room: he had that star presence pic.twitter.com/nejoU86MkC
— W I L L B R O O K E R (@willbrooker) July 24, 2019
#rutgerhauer was brilliant in Soldier Orange. RIP
— Voyage Around My Dad, Harry Leslie Smith (@Harryslaststand) July 24, 2019
— BOSTON ENVY (@Wtfenway94) July 24, 2019
— Scott Mantz (@MovieMantz) July 24, 2019
Speaking with the Radio Times in 2017, Hauer spoke of how he had improvised the career-defining monologue, writing all but two of the lines himself:
The irony is that all I did in Blade Runner was… and I’m not saying it’s nothing, but it’s so little.
I kept two lines, because I thought they were poetic. I thought they belonged to this character, because somewhere in his digital head he has poetry, and knows what it is. He feels it! And while his batteries are going, he comes up with the two lines.
Some fans have noted how the first Blade Runner was made in 1982, based on the 1968 novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K. Dick, was supposed to be set in the year 2019.
I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched C-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhäuser Gate. All those moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain. Time to die.
— radarzuriak (@radarzuriak) July 24, 2019
— Anthony Ingruber (@AnthonyIngruber) July 24, 2019
Our thoughts are with the family and friends of Rutger Hauer at this difficult time.
If you have experienced a bereavement and would like to speak with someone in confidence contact Cruse Bereavement Care via their national helpline on 0808 808 1677.
Jules studied English Literature with Creative Writing at Lancaster University before earning her masters in International Relations at Leiden University in The Netherlands (Hoi!). She then trained as a journalist through News Associates in Manchester. Jules has previously worked as a mental health blogger, copywriter and freelancer for various publications.