Blade Runner 2049 misfired at the box office during its opening weekend, but it was on target in other ways. The sequel to the 1982 sci-fi classic depicted a tech trillionaire antagonist who may seem familiar to some in Silicon Valley.
Jared Leto, who plays villain Niander Wallace and is a tech investor in real life, told Recode that he drew inspiration for the role from real people. "This is a guy who saved the world from starvation and has a very clear idea of what it's going to take in order for civilization to continue," Leto said. "I do have some friends in the tech world that I may or may not have based certain aspects of this character on."
Leto wouldn't elaborate on who Wallace was based on, but he's invested in companies like Reddit, Zenefits and Houseparty, according to Crunchbase. He also said that tech isn't totally responsible for societal problems. "I don't necessarily think that just because we're driving and we're not on horseback that there are less jobs now," Leto said. "The Industrial Revolution didn't lead to less jobs, it led to more jobs, so I think that probably will continue for some time."
While Blade Runner 2049 took the top spot in the box office this weekend, bringing in an estimated $31.5 million, it was less than the $50 million it was expected to pull for its opening weekend, according to Box Office Mojo. Ticket sales weren't stellar, but the reviews were: the film has an 89 percent score on the review site Rotten Tomatoes.