Mahershala Ali might have two Academy Award wins for Best Supporting Actor under his belt, but he’s got a lot of work to do when it comes to dislodging Wesley Snipes as the first name that comes to mind when you think of Blade. No offense to Sticky Fingaz, of course, but the short-lived 2006 TV series was hardly the subject of widespread acclaim before it was canceled after one season.
So far, the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s reboot remains shrouded in mystery eighteen months after it was first announced, with Ali still the only talent officially attached either in front of or behind the camera. However, it would appear that major news is on the horizon, with Kevin Feige basically admitting as much recently, while Blade has been sandwiched in between Black Panther II and Captain Marvel 2 on Disney’s release schedule, which would indicate a debut somewhere around the middle of 2022.
Snipes has been full of praise for his replacement, even though you’d imagine that internally he won’t be too pleased about a character he holds so close to his heart being rebooted without him, and in a social media exchange with a fan, the 58 year-old had a great answer when asked if he’ll play the role again, as you can see below.
I AM BLADE…forever. https://t.co/0IG0RRw5EW
— WS (@wesleysnipes) January 7, 2021
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There’ve been rumors making the rounds that Snipes could show up in the MCU’s Blade for a cameo appearance, supporting role or even as the villain, but that would probably be a little too distracting and place even more pressure on Ali. A PG-13 vampiric superhero blockbuster sounds like a tough nut to crack, as Morbius is about to find out, but both the leading man and the franchise have a more than proven track record of critical and commercial success to assuage any doubts.