Ridley Scott’s hefty new TV drama Blade Runner 2099 will no longer be filmed in Northern Ireland as previously planned.
The BBC confirmed the news today (5 October) with a quote from Northern Ireland Screen's chief executive Richard Williams, saying his organisation was "extremely disappointed" at the change, as it left "a gap in Northern Ireland's production schedule.”
The Prime Video project, exec produced by Scott, was into soft prep, with crew calls having gone out and creative teams – many of whom were local to NI - assembling at Belfast Harbour Studios.
There had been a delay in progress already, caused by the WGA strike, but filming had been tentatively rescheduled for 2024.
The BBC also confirmed that NI Screen had awarded Blade Runner 2099 funding of £4.1m through its screen fund awards programme in 2022-23, but said it understood that any funding from NI Screen will be returned.
Belfast’s film-friendly reputation rocketed with the behemoth Game of Thrones that filmed at Titanic Studios; the region also offers expanded Belfast Harbour Studios, Loop Studios and a major new virtual production facility called Studio Ulster situated in Giant’s Park and due to open fully next year.