The Blade Runner Vid-Phon (No, That’s Not a Typo)

Regarding the “Vid-Phon” from Blade Runner: Thanks to the HD release of the film, and a certain mystery photo showing four phones lined up in a row (Photo by Richard A. Coyle), I’ve attempted to ID all the known phones with the best available references.

I think I have also spotted a Vid-Phon not ID’ed in the film before now. I therefore believe there are a minimum of 5 phones: those in the four-in-a-row photo, and the hero (which, oddly, does not appear in that shot).

Please see the following image:

Reference image of the Vid-Phons from Blade Runner

Please click to enlarge.

In the bottom row, from left to right, these are the known phones:

El Graffito – Mounted on the wall next to the exterior stage door of The Snake Pit. Time: 55:19.

The Hero (No. 1?) – This is the phone inside The Snake Pit that Deckard uses to call Rachel. Time: 50:30.

Backstage – In the backstage hallway inside The Snake Pit, when Deckard is reading his newspaper and waiting for Zhora, there are a row of phones along the wall. These are very difficult to individually identify, due to general blurriness. This single phone is visible just well enough to get a positive ID. Note also the “Out of Order” tape. Time: 52:23.

The “Sub” (No. 3?) – This phone is visible behind Deckard when he calls Rachel from The Snake Pit. This is the phone documented in “The Vid-Phon Report,” by Masakazu Takeda, published in Japan in June of 2004. Time: 50:30.

This still leaves the “?” phone as yet unaccounted for.

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Author: Staff Writer

Thirty-something graphic designer trapped in a boring part of Florida.

3 thoughts on “The Blade Runner Vid-Phon (No, That’s Not a Typo)”

  1. The original working script mentioned several ” VIDEO PHONES” but as SRS discussed the devices with me and others he commonly used the term “VIDS” or “VID”. So I developed a couple of VID PHON logos which he liked ( but he never mentioned the missing letters ). Of course one had the bar over the o to be correct.
    Tom Southwell, production illustrator : Blade Runner.

  2. The “Backstage” one is sitting in a display case in the lobby of the Cinerama theater right now 10/3/17 if you happen to be anywhere near Seattle!

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