When two-time Academy winner Mahershala Ali was announced as the next Marvel’s Blade, Wesley Snipes, Marvel’s OG Blade, has but this to say, “I AM BLADE…forever.” Snipes wasn’t intending to disparage Ali, only trying to point out his disappointment in not being asked to return as the “Daywalker.”
Rumor now comes out that Wesley Snipes may, in fact, be returning as Blade, though he won’t be replacing Ali. We Got This Covered is reporting that Snipes would return in some sort of multiverse version of Blade. It’s all about the multiverse. Marvel and Snipes had steadfastly denied that Snipes would be part of a Blade reboot, but time (it’s been 18 or so months since Ali had been announced as the new Blade) has given Marvel president Kevin Feige time to re-think that stance. For Snipes’s part, he has always been willing to return.
It was a couple of months back when Feige spoke about Blade saying, “As we announced at Comic-Con last year, we’re moving ahead with Blade, starring Academy Award winner Mahershala Ali. The development and storylines are coming together, and we’ll have announcements very, very soon.” Feige delivered as he recently announced that the Blade reboot has found its screenwriter in Stacy Osei-Kuffour. She will be the very first black female writer to pen a Marvel movie, coming on the heels of Nia DaCosta being hired as the first black woman to direct a Marvel film as she is taking on Captain Marvel 2.
But this rumor of a possible Snipes return comes as somewhat of a surprise. Given Wesley Snipes’s initial reaction and the history of Snipes being tough to deal with on movie sets, it seemed like Feige and Marvel didn’t want to have much, if anything, to do with the actor. That didn’t stop Snipes’ fans from blowing up social media at Ali’s announcement of being Blade, a reaction that Snipes finally had to address.
Wesley Snipes gave a full statement to ComicBook, telling his many fans to “chillax” and to embrace Ali as the new Blade. “To all the DAYWALKERS losing their minds right now, chillaaxx. Although the news comes as a surprise, it’s ALL GOOD. Such is the ‘business’ of ‘entertainment!’ Much peace to the MCU crew – always a fan,” Snipes said. “Honor and respect to the grandmaster Stan. Congratulations and Salaam to Mahershala Ali, a beautiful and talented artist whose expressions I look forward to experiencing for many years to come. Inshallah, we will someday work together. Most importantly to my loyal fans, the incredible outpouring of love is overwhelming. I am grateful for the never-ending support. So, ‘nah fret nah worry, it’s not de end of de story.’ Welcome to the Daywalker Klique.”
Now that Osei-Kuffour is in place, Feige and Ali are moving on to who will end up behind the camera to direct the reboot. Feige has let Ali be directly involved with each phase of the hiring process as only black writers were seriously considered, showing Marvel’s continued focus on diversity and/or representation being their key focus. Besides Ali and Osei-Kuffour, the only other name mentioned in another hot rumor is that Oscar Isaac will appear alongside Ali to help battle vampires.
As of now, the Blade reboot is tentatively slated to arrive sometime between Black Panther 2 (July 2022) and Captain Marvel 2 (November 2022). It would be fun, and interesting, to see what Osei-Kuffour can come up with to get the 58-year-old Wesley Snipes one more time in front of the camera as Blade, even if it’s just a simple daywalking cameo.