Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige is definitely game to include Blade in the Marvel Cinematic Universe – one day. While the utter domination of the box office by superhero and comic book-based films is now taken for granted, back in the late 1990s, the genre badly needed a shot of adrenaline to wake it up. Films like Batman & Robin had done big damage to superhero movies as a whole, enough to keep the Caped Crusader out of theaters until 2005. Thankfully, a new primarily nocturnal hero would soon emerge to try and right the ship, courtesy of Marvel and New Line Cinema. That hero was of course Blade.
Excellently portrayed by Wesley Snipes, Blade brought a serious edge to the realm of comic-based films that had been sorely lacking after Joel Schumacher’s campy Batman efforts and silly entries like Steel and Barb Wire. While not completely without humor, Blade – the character – was a no-nonsense vampire killer that lived to kick ass and frowned upon taking any prisoners, and the R-rated action/horror flick surrounding him was all the better for it.
While not a critical darling, Blade was a hit with audiences, earning $131 million worldwide on a budget of $40 million. 2002’s Blade II proved to be another big success, although the less said about 2004’s series closer Blade: Trinity the better. Blade has been dormant in the live-action realm since, but with the Daywalker now back in the loving arms of Marvel Studios, one assumes it’ll only be a matter of time until he’s resurrected. To that end, Arrow in the Head recently asked Feige about the possibility of Blade joining the MCU, and received this response:
“We think it would be cool. Someday. My tenure at Marvel started 17 years ago, and there were two things that sort of launched the modern era. One was X-Men, which was the first thing that people said, “Oh, there’s life here.” But a few years before that, there was Blade. A character nobody had heard of at all, had only appeared in a few issues of Tomb of Dracula or something, turned into a big franchise. That was always a great lesson for me, where you go, “It doesn’t matter how well known the character is, it matters how cool the movie is.” Which, many years later, would be the reason we do Guardians of the Galaxy, Doctor Strange. I think Blade is a legacy character now, and I think it would be fun to do something with him one day.”
On one hand, Feige’s statement above doesn’t suggest that there are any present plans to slot Blade into the ongoing MCU line-up, which is somewhat disappointing. Still, he clearly has a lot of respect and admiration for both the Blade character and the success of the Blade movie series, and seems to see Blade as a special treat Marvel Studios can keep in its back-pocket until they need him.
Perhaps Feige’s most illuminating observation above is how he sees Blade’s early success as a sign that a Marvel character doesn’t have to already be really well-known to spawn a hit movie, which apparently was taken to heart when the decision was made to grant characters like Doctor Strange and the Guardians of the Galaxy their own solo efforts within the MCU. It remains to be seen if or when Blade will eventually reemerge, but it’ll be interesting to see what actor takes over the role, presuming Snipes might be seen as too old by then.
Source: Arrow in the Head
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