Versatile Dutch leading man in the 1970s, Rutger Hauer, who co-starred in the 1982 film “Blade Runner” died on July 19, 2019. He was 75. He passed away in his Netherlands home after a short bought with illness.
Steve Kenis, Hauer’s agent confirmed Hauer’s death and said the funeral was held Wednesday, July 24, 2019.
Hauer’s most beloved film was a flop on its original release. In 1982, Hauer played the murderous Roy Batty who was a gang leader of outlaw replicants. He played opposite Harrison Ford in “Blade Runner” written by Ridley Scott. “Blade Runner” has been a widely influential cult favorite. Batty became Hauer’s most unforgettable role.
In 2005, he appeared as Cardinal Roark in “Sin City” and the corporate villain Bruce Wayne discovers running Wayne Corp. in “Batman Begins.”
In the HBO show “True Blood,” Hauer played Niall Brigant, the king of the tribe that Stackhouse family descended from, and he is the faerie grandfather to Sookie and Jason Stackhouse. Additionally, Hauer was a recurring character in ABC’s medieval musical comedy “Galavant,” as Kingsley in 2015.
As a natural in horror and vampire movies, he starred as Van Helsing in Dario Argento’s “Dracula 3D” and vampire Barlow in the 2004 miniseries “Salem’s Lot” alongside Andre Braugher, Rob Lowe, and Donald Sutherland.
Hauer was considered handsome, energetic, and he was fluent in multiple languages. He made his mark in the late 1960s as the star of Paul Verhoeven’s medieval TV series “Floris” in the Netherlands.
He soared to the top of the ranks of Dutch stardom in 1973 when he played opposite Monique van de Ven in “Turkish Delight.” This was a sexually explosive drama which became a box-office hit and garnered a nod at the Oscar’s for best foreign film.
Hauer did three more Dutch films with Verhoeven and they became art-house successes in the United States, all Hauer was able to segue into a Hollywood career. He starred as a terrorist in the 1981 Sylvester Stallone thriller “Nighthawks.”
Increasingly, Hauer turned to action-oriented roles in the ‘80s. He starred in the fantasy film, “Ladyhawke” in 1985, and reteamed up with Verhoeven in the sword-and-armor film “Flesh & Blood.” In 1986, he played the psychotic murderer in “The Hitcher” and played a bounty hunter in the reboot of TV Western “Wanted: Dead or Alive” in 1986.
In 1988, “The Legend of the Holy Drinker” shows a more sensitive side to Hauer. He portrays a homeless drunk who is also a petty criminal who finds redemption in Paris. This film won the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival.
During the 1990s, he preferred more routine roles in both American and International productions. He played vampire Lord Lothos in the original film, “Buffy the Vampire Slayer.”
Hauer received Golden Glob nominations for performances in “Escape From Sobibor” and “Fatherland” in 1987 and 1994.
By Jeanette Smith
Variety: Rutger Hauer, ‘Blade Runner’ Co-Star, Dies at 75
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