If someone put you on the spot and asked you to name a vampire with a penchant for leather who starred in a string of movies around the early 2000s, 99% of people would probably go for Wesley Snipes’ Blade. Then again, a small minority may have plumped for Kate Beckinsale’s Selene from the Underworld franchise, who made more appearances and saw her big screen efforts earn more money.
Snipes’ tenure as the Daywalker spanned three films and $415 million at the box office, while Underworld somehow managed to get five despite none of them being very good, yielding a global haul of $539 million. Beckinsdale was good value as the ass-kicking hero of the piece, but everything else about the dark and gloomy mythology was painfully bland and formulaic.
2016’s Blood Wars scored the lowest critical and commercial returns in the series, hammering what looked to be the final nail in the coffin of Underworld. To try and breathe new life into the property, several potential crossovers were mooted, which included Selene making her way into Paul W.S. Anderson’s Resident Evil, a post-credits tag in the awful I, Frankenstein and a crossover with Snipes’ Blade. In a new interview, Beckinsale admitted that she regrets that it never managed to come to fruition due to Marvel Studios planning a reboot.
“I really wanted them to do an Underworld/Blade mashup. What a duo that would be. I would definitely do that, but I think they just wanted to reboot Blade as Blade, so they didn’t go for it.”
Having Underworld meet Blade could have caused in a legal and contractual nightmare anyway, with Sony producing the former via the Screen Gems subsidiary, while the latter hailed from Warner Bros. offshoot New Line Cinema, before the character reverted back to Marvel in the summer of 2012, so it may have been nothing more than wishful thinking to begin with.