These days, it’s hard to imagine a world in which Marvel superheroes don’t dominate the box office, but that was the case not long ago. Starting with the release of Iron Man in 2008, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has changed the course of Hollywood. But it was just a decade before that, in 1998, when a Marvel hero appeared in cinemas for the first time. We’re talking, of course, about Blade: the blockbuster film about Marvel Comics’ vampire hunter. While the Wesley Snipes-lead Blade franchise petered out after 2004’s Blade: Trinity, the character is soon set to return to the big screen, this time as a part of the MCU. So, what do we know about Marvel’s upcoming Blade movie?
Who’s joined Blade’s cast and crew?
News about the Blade reboot has surfaced in a slow but steady drip over the past two years. The film was officially confirmed at San Diego Comic-Con in July 2019, when two-time Oscar-winner Mahershala Ali was announced as the next Blade. Beyond Ali, no other cast members have been announced.
Behind the camera, Mogul Mowgli director Bassam Tariq has been tapped to direct, making him the first Muslim director to helm an MCU film. Joining Tariq is screenwriter Stacy Osei-Kuffour (Watchmen), who is the first Black woman to write an MCU film.
Do we have any plot details yet?
Like with most of its projects, Marvel Studios is keeping the details of Blade under wraps — pretty much the only thing fans do know is that it’ll star the titular vampire hunter.
Blade, who first appeared in the pages of Marvel Comics in 1973, is a “Daywalker”: a human-vampire hybrid who’s immune to vampires’ powers and, in some depictions, has vampire-like superpowers. Although vampires have not yet appeared in the MCU, the beings were recently revealed to exist in the films’ universe thanks to a throwaway line in the series Loki, in which Mobius (Owen Wilson) mentioned having dealt with them.
Does Blade have a release date?
Unfortunately, Marvel has not yet announced a premiere date for Blade. The film isn’t set to begin production until July 2022, according to The Hollywood Reporter, meaning it will be some time before the movie arrives in theaters. Furthermore, Blade isn’t even confirmed to be in Marvel’s Phase Four, which currently consists of several movies and films, the last of which, Guardians of the Galaxy: Volume 3, is scheduled for release on May 5, 2023. In all likelihood, Blade won’t debut until the second half of 2023 at the earliest, and may ultimately be a part of the MCU’s Phase Five.
How will Blade fits into the MCU?
This may be the biggest question of all. While Blade has had some crossover with Marvel’s more mainstream superheroes, he has often operated as a lone wolf in the more frightening, supernatural corners of the Marvel Comics world. That could mean that the film will be a legitimate horror movie — Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness is expected to introduce horror to the MCU — or it might end up being more in line with typical MCU fare. Bustle will keep this post updated if any new details surface.