The Blade films kicked off before the Marvel Cinematic Universe was established, which prevented the half human, half vampire character from becoming a household name like his Marvel brethren. James Wan, who made a name for himself directing horror films like Saw, Insidious, and The Conjuring before tackling big-budget action with Aquaman, claims he once attempted to revive the character for a feature film.
"Years back, a couple of years back, I think it was right after Conjuring 1 that I went into a particular studio and told them, 'Hey, I'm a big fan of Blade. Would you guys be interested in rebooting Blade?'" Wan recalled to the Happy Sad Confused podcast. "Obviously, nothing came out of that! But that was my first intro into looking at potential comic book properties."
While reboots often find new ways of imagining a character or storyline to deliver audiences something fresh, Wan seemingly didn't have a game-changing approach to the character, as he couldn't even remember what angle his reboot would take with the character.
"It was just to kind of talk about it. I didn't have a full presentation. I did have an idea, I can't quite remember what it was," the director confessed. "That's how far back it was and I've done a lot since then so I can't quite remember what I had thought of. But I did like it at the time."
The first Blade hits theaters in 1998, pre-dating both X-Men and Spider-Man. The success of those films helped launched a surge of superhero films, many of which were disappointing, before the Marvel Cinematic Universe kicked off in 2008. The R-rated film earned itself two sequels, yet the trilogy concluded with the underwhelming Blade: Trinity, killing off any momentum the franchise had been building.
Between streaming services and more adult-oriented superhero outings, it seems like Blade is primed for a resurrection. Even original star Wesley Snipes has regularly professed he'd happily return to the series.
"All the main execs [at Marvel] and my team, we've been discussing for the past two years. Everyone's enthusiastic about it, everybody gets it," Snipes shared with VICE earlier this year. "But they got a business to run and they gotta square the things that they gotta figure out before they can get to it, I guess. In the meantime, we got a business to run and our own slate of things to do so."
Stay tuned for details on the potential future for Blade.
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