It's been nearly two years since Kevin Feige announced to a packed Hall H crowd that the Marvel Cinematic Universe would be rebooting the beloved Blade character, and that Oscar-winning actor Mahershala Ali had been tapped to play the titular vampire hunter. Now, at long last, the new Blade movie has a director. According to Deadline, Marvel Studios has tapped Bassam Tariq to direct Ali in a live-action Blade movie set in the MCU.
The report states that a deal between Marvel and Tariq isn't officially done, but that the two sides are deep in talks on the project and Marvel is clearly keen on hiring the filmmaker. Tariq is best known for directing the film Mogul Mowgli, which starred Riz Ahmed as an up-and-coming rapper on the verge of his big break. Watchmen and Hunters writer Stacy Osei-Kuffour was hired by Marvel to pen the Blade screenplay. As always, Kevin Feige will be producing.
Tariq's hiring brings an end to a long search conducted by Marvel Studios, which saw several directors take meetings and deliver pitches for a potential Blade movie. After multiple rounds, Tariq ended up with the job.
Fans were asking Marvel Studios about a new Blade long before Ali walked out on the stage at San Diego Comic Con. However, the questions about the beloved vampire hunter have only multiplied since the announcement. There's no telling exactly when the Blade movie will be hitting theaters, or what story it will follow, but at least the core creative team is now in place. There could be more news on the Blade front in the near future, especially if a 2023 release is on the table.
Earlier this year, there was a report suggesting that Blade could head into production next summer, which would give Tariq and the rest of the team more than enough time to get everything in place. The next big question will be how Marvel Studios wants to approach the property. Many fans continue hoping that Blade will be the first R-rated venture in the MCU, following in the footsteps of the original Blade trilogy that starred Wesley Snipes. Marvel has yet to give any indication that it will be moving in that direction for any future projects, with Feige going as far as to say that all projects on the table are PG-13.
Are you looking forward to Marvel's take on Blade? Let us know in the comments!