The MCU's New Blade Change Is A Worrying Update

The latest change in Marvel's Blade should be a cause for concern. Announced during Marvel Studios' San Diego Comic-Con 2019 Hall H panel, the upcoming reboot will introduce the Daywalker to the MCU. Unfortunately, the project is encountering some major troubles as hinted by the newest update from the upcoming Marvel Studios film.

Academy Award-winning actor Mahershala Ali is set to headline Blade as its titular character, Eric Brooks. Two years after it was initially publicized, it landed its director, Bassam Tariq — best known for helming 2013's These Birds Walk and 2020's Mogul Mowgli. Since then, pre-production for Blade has quietly progressed. Plot details are still scant at the moment, but the film is reportedly about to start filming in November under the working title: "Perfect Imprints." Or that was the plan until Blade unexpectedly lost Tariq as its director.


Related: MCU's Blade Must Keep One Thing From Wesley Snipes' Movies

This isn't the first time that a director exited a Marvel Studios project unexpectedly, but this should be a cause for concern for Blade fans. The primary problem in this situation is the project's timeline. It has been more than three years since the movie was announced and more than one since Tariq was hired to direct Blade. Yet, there's barely any movement on its production; according to Marvel Studios' official statement about Tariq's Blade exit, its filming schedule continues to shift but there has been no mention of its release date changing with it. Blade is barely a year away from it's planned release date, and now it has suffered a massive setback by losing its director. Unless Marvel Studios already has a replacement filmmaker waiting to be announced, they may be forced to delay Blade.

Why Has The MCU's Blade Movie Taken So Long?

MCU Phase 4 Antman Avengers Powerful Too Need Humanise (1)

The coronavirus pandemic wreaked havoc on Marvel Studios' Phase 4 plans. Kevin Feige and his team had to reshuffle and delay certain projects to adapt to shelter-in-place orders around the world because of the health crisis. This is one of the reasons why it has taken so long for Blade to have any substantial production update. Besides that, the sheer amount of content that Marvel Studios are currently working on could be contributing to Blade's slow production progression. Unlike the Infinity Saga which only featured films, MCU's ongoing Multiverse Saga also includes TV shows, effectively doubling the franchise's output. Understandably, Feige would be prioritizing projects that are scheduled to be released first, but it's highly unusual for them to have a project that is set to premiere in a year that is seemingly stuck in pre-production limbo.

As previously mentioned, Marvel Studios are no stranger to losing directors. Recently, Spider-Man trilogy helmer, Jon Watts, who was long attached to spearhead the MCU's Fantastic Four reboot left the project. Not long after that, WandaVision's director, Matt Shakman, was announced to replace him, and the movie isn't due to come out until late 2024. Given Blade's November 2023, it's imperative that Marvel Studios decide on Tariq's replacement if they want to keep the film's release date.

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