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A replicant is a bioengineered or biorobotic being created in the film Blade Runner. The Nexus series – genetically designed by the Tyrell Corporation – are virtually identical to an adult human, but have superior strength, agility, and variable intelligence depending on the model. Because of their physical similarity to humans a replicant must be detected by its lack of emotional responses and empathy to questions posed in a Voight-Kampff test. A derogatory term for replicant is "skin-job."
Philip K. Dick's novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? which inspired Blade Runner used the term android (andy), but director Ridley Scott wanted a new term that did not have preconceptions. As David Peoples was rewriting the screenplay he consulted his daughter who was involved in microbiology and biochemistry. She suggested the term "replicating" which is the process of duplicating cells for cloning. From that Peoples came up with "replicant" and inserted it into Hampton Fancher's screenplay.