Niander Wallace is a scientist, replicant manufacturer, technologist and the founding CEO of the replicant manufacturering company, Wallace Corporation. He is first introduced as 2036: Nexus Dawn, a short video as a part of the promotion of Blade Runner 2049, in which he appears as the main antagonist.
It is unknown whether Wallace was born blind or if he lost his sight over time. Regardless, he manages to see with the help of a fleet of miniature drones in conjunction with an insert placed in his neck. Wallace has been seen wearing a kimono, as well as business attire for important meetings. His slicked back hair in conjunction with his beard give him a unique look, and his way of speaking is more in line with a poet or prophet than a corporate head.
A self-proclaimed recluse, Wallace's affliction made it difficult for him to travel, but did not stop him from innovating.
Events of 2025-2028
Wallace's first move onto the world stage occurred after the Blackout brought the world into a state of crisis, with stock markets crashing and food shortages prevalent. He pioneered advancements into genetically modified food, essentially bringing an end to the global food crisis, ending his reclusiveness, and allowing his company to expand on Earth and onto Off-world Colonies.
Three years later, the bankrupt Tyrell Corporation is bought out by Wallace, indicating Wallace's desire to continue replicant development despite the prohibition of replicant technology after the Blackout.
Events of the 2030's
See: 2036: Nexus Dawn
Wallace began to modify genetic engineering to produce replicants that were not only superior in strength and agility compared to their human creators, but also loyal beyond question, bred to obey. These Nexus-9 replicants were made legal by Wallace and the magistrates of Los Angeles in 2036, allowing replicants into the workforce and society.
Strive for Evolution
After the film's events progressed, K visits the headquarters of Wallace Corporation, the company of Niander, where the deceased female is identified from DNA archives as Rachael, an experimental replicant designed by the inventor of replicants, Dr. Tyrell. K learns of Rachael's romantic ties with former blade runner Rick Deckard.
Wallace himself, the CEO, wants to discover the secret to reproduction in replicants in order to support interstellar colonization, and to this end he sends a replicant named Luv, which serves as the secondary antagonist and as the main assistant to Wallace, to steal Rachael's remains from LAPD headquarters and follow K to find Rachael's child.
K seeks out Dr. Ana Stelline, the leading designer of replicant memories, who confirms that his memory of the orphanage is real. This leads K to believe that he is Rachael's son. At LAPD headquarters, K fails a test for his replicant obedience, but claims that he failed the test because he was emotional from completing his mission to kill the child. Joshi gives him 48 hours before he is retired, pending the results of his next test. After learning what K has discovered, Joi insists that he is special and names him "Joe". Preparing to flee, K transfers Joi to a mobile emitter on her request. K has the wooden horse analyzed, which reveals traces of radiation that lead him to the ruins of Las Vegas. There he finds Deckard, who reveals that he is the father of Rachael's child and that he scrambled the birth records to protect the child's identity before leaving it in the custody of the replicant freedom movement.
After killing Joshi, Luv and her men track K to Deckard's location. They kidnap Deckard, destroy Joi and leave a wounded K to die. K is rescued by the Replicant resistance movement and their leader Freysa informs him that Rachael's child is female. In order to ensure that Deckard does not lead Wallace to Rachael's daughter or to the replicant freedom movement, Freysa orders K to kill Deckard. Meanwhile, Deckard is brought before Wallace, who offers him a clone of Rachael as a reward for revealing what he knows. When Deckard refuses, Wallace orders Luv to escort Deckard off-world to be tortured for information.
K intercepts Deckard's captors and kills Luv but is mortally injured in the fight. K stages Deckard's death to protect him from both Wallace and the replicants. Wallace's status is left alive ,yet it is unknown if he would return in a possible third film of the Blade Runner films.
Niander Wallace is an extremely sophisticated and perceptive individual, possessing an incredibly high intellect.
His voice is smooth and calm and throughout the movie is never seen losing his temper.
Despite all of his sophistication, Wallace is determined to accomplish his goals regardless of the cost, he had murdered his new replicants right after they were born, and enjoyed the amount of pain the replicants recieved, for example, when a new Replicant was born, he silences her and says cynically; "Happy birthday", while the newborn Replicant is suffering. Wallace tortures Deckard after he is brought before him by showing a clone of Rachael. He is also not a man who gives up easily, as he states before Luv that the child of Rachael is the key for the future, not to the future of the humanity, but to the Replicants he wills to create. It can be shown how Luv is attempting to prove herself to her master by never giving up in accomplishing the task.
He has somewhat of a god complex, as he calls the replicants he creates "angels", and states that he is a father of millions (which partially is true). Additionally, Wallace is shown to be a brilliant strategist, delegating and employing others, rather than getting his hands dirty. But despite his brilliance he is frustrated by his inability to gift replicants the ability to reproduce naturally and is jealous of Tyrell's accomplishments achieving what he could not.
- Late singer David Bowie was the original choice to play Niander Wallace, but he passed away before the pre-production of Blade Runner 2049 began, allowing Jared Leto to be cast as Wallace.
- In order to portray the blind character of Niander Wallace Jared Leto decided to fit himself with opaque contact lenses that made it impossible for him to see any thing.
- Jared Leto used Silicon Valley tech investors and inventors that he personally knows as examples of how Niander Wallace would behave.
- Jared Leto worked with the organization Junior Blind of America to research blindness in preparation for the role of Niander Wallace.
- Gary Oldman and Ed Harris were considered for the role of Wallace before the much younger Jared Leto was cast.
- Wallace is blind so he uses to floating cameras as eyes that operate with a device on his neck moving around at Wallace's will.